In order to raise attainment for all pupils we have a consistent approach to the teaching of handwriting throughout the school.  We aim for all children to develop a legible, fluent and adaptable handwriting style that can be produced at speed and empowers children to write with confidence and creativity.

Handwriting is an important communication skill which has a developmental process with its own distinctive stages of progression.  We use the Penpals for Handwriting scheme which is published by Cambridge University Press.  The Penpals materials provide everything necessary for structured teaching in the context of our creative curriculum.  There are five stages that form the basic organisational structure of the scheme that we use throughout the school:

  •       Readiness for handwriting; gross and fine motor skills leading to pattern, marking and letter formation (Foundation/3-5 years)
  •       Beginning to join (Key Stage 1/5-7 years)
  •       Securing the joins (Lower Key Stage 2/7-9 years)
  •       Practising speed and fluency (Key Stage 2 7-11 years)
  •       Presentational skills (Upper Key Stage 2/9-11 years)

Teachers need to be flexible with their cohort of children and make individual judgements of where in the scheme each child is ready to work.

Based on the level of handwriting in the class, the teacher makes the decision about the time that needs to be dedicated to the teaching of handwriting.  There will be times when handwriting needs to be taught daily for 10-15 minutes, and there will be other times when it can be taught through other activities, e.g. shared and modelled writing sessions.

Considerations when teaching handwriting:

  • Pencil grip and tension;
  • Writing pressure;
  • Clarity of the stroke;
  • Paper position for left/right handed children;
  • Body posture
  • Furniture

Further TIPS FOR TEACHING (National Handwriting Association) is available for staff on the school server in the following location.

publicdata\Staff\Teaching\Ac Year 2012-2013\Resources\English Resources\Handwriting\National Handwriting Association


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