Handwriting Troubles!

  • My son is great in math and science, but when it comes to handwriting he is horrible at it. He constantly writes too big or too close together and his writing is not improving in spite of extra help. In this day and age of computers should I even be worried about his handwriting? – Bonnie, StrongMoms Facilitator

  • Absolutely you should be concerned with handwriting. Not only is handwriting a valuable skill to have; the process of learning it will teach him values such as practice makes perfect, caring how to be neat, thinking ahead, being organized and perseverance among many other things. It will help him memorize what the letters look like and how they go together, and further into school the act of writing will help him with memorizing how to use proper grammar. Beyond that I cannot tell you how many times I have had to write down directions for someone while I was working at Walgreens, or my daily tasks, or writing in the daily log book so that the following shifts know what's going on in the department with supplies, machines, and customers. Granted a lot of things are computerized these days, but there are just as many things that aren't such as the things listed above, and Heaven forbid a computer failure. Anyhow I think that it is important for children to learn good hand writing. I'm not really sure on how to improve the quality of his writing other than practicing and maybe giving him some specific guidelines to follow. Maybe give him a rule about spacing words apart like using his pinky finger to space between one word and another. Then have him practice writing words where the letters aren't touching. Maybe even games like tic-tac-toe could help because it would require him to write an X or O in the amount of space provided. Anyway this is all I have for ya.. Just keep practicing.

  • Some people naturally have worse handwriting than others, I think. My sister always had really "childish" looking handwriting but it has developed into an "adult scrawl" as the years have gone on. :-) I think it is important for job skills and life, as Brinny said. However, I wouldn't make a massive deal about it to your son in a way that makes him feel bad. I'd say, however, that practice makes perfect. Perhaps you could have a little activity each week to just keep working on things. I think it'll eventually click...