Handwriting Programs Available
This is a standard curriculum used in many school districts. D’Nealian can be challenging for children with handwriting difficulties for a couple reasons. The children are taught to write letters with a slant. In addition, “monkey tails” added to the manuscript or printed letter. This ending stroke is used later as the connector in cursive writing. Common modifications for children struggling with this curriculum are to omit the slant and leave off the “monkey tails” on manuscript letters.
First Strokes by Jan McCleskey, MA, OTR
“The First Strokes Multi-Sensory Handwriting Program was designed by an occupational therapist to teach print handwriting on a multi-sensory basis. Inherent in the program, is large gross-motor (kinesthetic) learning of the lower and upper case, print letters.” Billy the Seal is also used to engage children in their learning.
Handwriting Without Tears by Jan Olsen, OTR/L
A developmental program that relies heavily on multi-sensory teaching methods which work well for typically developing children, along with children with special needs. Brief but effective practice sessions are used. Read reviews.
Loop and Groups by Mary Benbow, MS., OTR
Cursive “letters are taught in groups that share common movement patterns. For example, a, d, g, q, and c can be visualized on a clock face, and are called “Clock Climbers.” Easy-to-remember motor and memory cues help students visualize and verbalize while experiencing the “feel” of the letter.”