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Handwriting Practice
Old 08-18-2013, 12:11 PM
 
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Hello!

We use Handwriting Without Tears to teach handwriting and my district did not order any of the practice workbooks this year. We have been told we are not allowed to copy any of the workbooks pages either. We are being directed to focus on using the HWT paper for practice. Would any of you have some ideas for helping me figure out a way to teach the letters using only the blank white paper? I teach first graders.

We do have an ipad that we are using as document cameras, so I could use that to model the letters and have them copy, but there will still no longer be a model on the paper itself. I am open to the idea of them using the paper; it may help in the long run as I find they have some trouble generalizing the practice to the paper when they are writing. I am just stumped a bit on how best to manage the instruction.

Thanks in advance.


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Handwriting
Old 08-18-2013, 02:27 PM
 
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I teach handwriting without photocopied sheets or a workbook. Each child has their own lined paper either in a book or a loose-leaf sheet.

On my whiteboard I draw lines with a permanent marker. I use these lines to write the letter, using a different coloured whiteboard marker, while explaining to the class what to do eg start at the top, pull down and stop. My handwriting lesson has the date, pattern, lower case then upper case letter followed by a sentence - one on each line of a lined page.

When I have shown the letter to the class and while they are writing it, I walk around the room and see each child's work. Some work gets a tick while other children have a teacher-written letter put on the page for the child to trace and try again.

Handwriting is best taught with all children facing the whiteboard so sometimes children move on their desk so that happens ie they sit on the side of their desk!

I use permanent pens on the whiteboard for the lines then I do not have to re-do them every time I need them!

I have used this method successfully in all year levels.
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Thanks so much!
Old 08-19-2013, 08:08 AM
 
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Can you tell me more about how you organize your loose leaf papers? We will have the HWT paper so I can use that. Do you put them in a folder?

Unfortunately we do not have whiteboards. I have an easel and may try that. Any other thoughts about how to model for the whole class without a whiteboard?
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Your district is correct in that you may not
Old 08-19-2013, 08:18 AM
 
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copy the books. People are sometimes confused about that because once a book is purchased for a single child, you can make unlimited copies for THAT child. They (HWT) are pretty strict about it too. They would definitely pursue that if your school copied from the workbooks for everyone.

It does stink that you cannot have the workbooks. I think that the pp has some good ideas. Can you make a bigger version of the HWT style writing paper? You could blow it and laminate it to hang on your easel. When you show the example, write with dry or wet erase markers.

I think that HWT also offers a wall chart you could post.
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Good idea!
Old 08-20-2013, 05:03 AM
 
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We use to have the easel paper, but we used all of the charts and they were not reordered.

I think using the doc camera will be the closest thing to the whiteboard. I also have an easel with a whiteboard, but the lines are different, so that sometimes confuses the students. I'll just need to be really explicit about how to use the lines and how they are different when instructing.

I am still wondering how to organize the practice papers... Any ideas or tips on what works best? Pocket folders? Just passing out the papers? We do have the green HWT journals. Maybe I could use those for practice/instruction?


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Easel and Handwriting
Old 08-21-2013, 04:35 AM
 
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By an easel I think you mean an artist's easel on which you clip paper. If it is this, you may have to draw lines with marker pens on chart paper and then show the children as I have explained in the previous post.

I do usually use an exercise book for the children's handwriting which is already ruled correctly for them to use. Loose leaf papers I tend to only keep one each grading period and keep it in the test book file (I use a scrap book and glue the pages in). All other sheets would be just sent home or you could staple them into small pads/books and then they could have all the sheets together.

Hope you can find a system which works for you.
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Thanks all!
Old 08-22-2013, 03:16 AM
 
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Not really sure about a system for the papers, but I will try to snag some of the leftover journals for the practice. It will be an adventure!
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