Monday, August 17, 2009

Handwriting without Tears

My Printing Book
I am so proud of Bug this summer. Her handwriting looks wonderful. Writing has been so hard for her and it is still a challenge.

Last year, for kindergarten we used- A reason for writing book A. We both loved it. She never complained and she was always excited to color the back page. When I started looking at the next workbook in the series, I knew it would be very difficult for her. The lines got much smaller. I also knew it was not working for her even if we loved it. It made me look at her handwriting and I realized that it was so messy and unrecognizable.

Before, we started kindergarten her occupational therapist recommended Handwriting Without Tears. I blew it off. I had looked over it previously and thought that the writing looked so different from others and all the manipulative's in a handwriting program seemed like a waste of time and money. It's handwriting not math!
I went to her OT to inquire more about Handwriting without Tears and I wanted to see and touch it and find something bad about it.

She convinced me that it would work and I ended up ordering the wood pieces for capital letters, mat for the wood pieces, capital letter cards, stamp and see screen, small pencils for little hands, chalk bits,gray block paper and the wide double line paper, and the slate and double line chalk boards. We opted out on the Roll-A-dough letters and the play-doh cards. With Bug already knowing her letters and the drooling issues that play-doh does to her. Her mouth turns into a faucet. It's hard to turn it off even after using play-doh. Paper and drool just don't go to well together.

I ordered both kindergarten and the 1st grade book. We have been working on the kindergarten book over the summer. Her writing looks so good, its 100% better. I can't believe how hard headed I was not to use this program in the beginning. The small pencils are pretty much golf pencils with erasers. Her hands don't shake anymore. I guess small pencils are great for using with kids with low muscle tone. I have used many different types of pencil grips also which are now collecting dust.

This has been a wonderful handwriting program for Bug. It's hard to believe that after 2 1/2 months her handwriting has improved that much. Her therapist has even noticed how much her handwriting as improved. For all you hard headed moms out their not liking the way the style looks-give it a try. I have also asked on some of the forums how kids do with the transition to other programs when they are done with HWT and it has been very positive.

If you want to know how this program works. It starts out teaching upper case letters rather than lower case. It does letters that have the same types of strokes together. Its a great multi-sensory program. In the beginning it starts out with the hands on stuff. It mixes it up often so it's not the same thing every time. I can see how it helps with letter reversal with "b and d". The hands on really reinforce those skills. None of the letters are slanted and even when you get to cursive the letters do not slant. It only takes around 15 minutes to do daily.
Next year Bug will start the 1st grade book. I look forward to using it with her and I will even start Little man with it when his time comes.

A drawback to some families may be the style of writing. If you have a struggling writer it will be okay that it is a little different. It is worth the difference to build their confidence and ease of writing. Buying the whole set is pricey compared to other handwriting programs. I have found that it is worth the extra money to help Bug with handwriting that is legible.

Disclaimer I have received no product or money for this review. This opinion is based on my personal use of this curriculum.

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