ArtsAutosBooksBusinessEducationEntertainmentFamilyFashionFoodGamesGenderHealthHolidaysHomeHubPagesPersonal FinancePetsPoliticsReligionSportsTechnologyTravel

A New Way to Teach Your Child to Write in Cursive

Updated on January 9, 2014

Our Journey through Manuscript

I home school both of my children, and this forces me to think more outside the box when it comes to their education.

My daughter showed a small interest in manuscript when she was 3. She showed me how she could "sign" her name in a restaurant one day and I was quite impressed. At this early age, she was able to recognize the way I would string my letters together when writing. Surprisingly, all my efforts to teach her more were met with refusal, so I left it alone.

It did however spark a deep interest for my then 5 year old son. He was taken with the pretty loops and speed at which I could write and wanted to learn. I had already discovered that those boring, repetitive, worksheets that have our children write the letters over and over and over did not work for him at all. So I knew this was not the route to go to teach him manuscript.

While brainstorming this problem, the realization of just how simple manuscript really is hit me. And that is when I created this flash card packet. My husband was amazed and told me I had to share it, because to him it was revolutionary to traditional manuscript teachings. I hope you find it just as revolutionary as we did.

What you Need

  • 1 package 3x6 index cards
  • 1 package 4x6 index cards
  • 3 different colored markers
  • 1 ball point pen

Click thumbnail to view full-size

Making Your Flashcards

  1. The first thing you need to do is to make all 26 letters of the Alphabet, both capital and lower case on the blank side of the card. Do this in print.
  2. On the lined side of the card, make the manuscript version of each letter. Both capital and lower case. You want to make sure that your letters are large enough for small detail to be easy to see, and so that your child can trace over the top of them if they need to.
  3. It is helpful if the capital and lowercase are two different colors.
  4. I added small arrows to help my son know what directions to move his pencil.

This step may seem pointless, since I did say earlier that my method was different than traditional. While this step may seem traditional, what we do with these flashcards is not traditional. That part comes later.



Making the Larger Flashcards

This is the fun part. This is the part that made my husband stop and think. He said, "I never saw it that way before. They should try this in public school."

  1. Write a simple word in one color marker. Something like cat, dog, peas, ball, etc. Make the letters nice and big, and leave a tiny bit more space than normal between each letter.
  2. Using the other nice contrasting color, start linking the letter together just like you would in cursive.
  3. Below each word, in a 3rd color, write the word completely in manuscript. It should look like this when you are done. Make as many as you feel your child needs.


We found that this step was the most helpful. It really takes those confusing letters and brings them to a whole new level in the child's mind. Letters like a cursive S no longer seem so scary and intimidating when you can see that it is still just an S.

You can also do longer words, just for fun.

Again, seeing the words put together like this really helps take the intimidation factor down a few notches. The letter M and N suddenly make sense in a way they might not have before. To us it may seem logical that they extra hump is the connecting line, but this might not be the case for your child.

I think sometimes we sell our children short. We break things down into smaller pieces, thinking it is easier for them to grasp. And with a lot of things, this might be the case. But I believe there are times when we take it too far. This is one of those things. Seeing the whole mechanism work together is actually what makes it work.

How to Use your Alphabet Flashcards

Back to the individual letter flash cards we made earlier.

These are very helpful when your child needs a little bit of traditional tracing and tracing again and tracing again.

But we also found was helpful, was to string them together so my son to could do it himself.

Doing it in this manner gave my son more control over his own learning. It allowed him to put letters together himself, see how they would look, and continue to look at them while writing.

This is in no way a quick fix, but it is different, and can be very fun.

You might be asking yourself what would be a good place to start. I say, start with their name. It will give them a great sense of pride when they can "sign" their name on worksheets and cards. This is what my kids found the most fulfilling: being able to add their signature to the bottom of birthday cards we sent out to family members. It made them feel all grown up.



A Few Helpful Tips

A few tips to help make this process smooth and more enjoyable for you and your child.

  • Patience, patience, patience. For both of you. This is a very different way of writing. Especially if your child has a firm grasp on print. Print is block letters with definite ends to each letter. Manuscript is flowing and free with no stopping between letters. This part can be a harder transition than learning to form the letters.
  • Allow the child space to try and try and fail, and try again in his/her own way. As an adult, you were taught a very rigid set way to cursive and you had to practice a letter repeatedly until your form was correct. This method moves away from that. Their form will be messy, and that is okay. Their writing will smooth out as they practice and their hand develops new muscle memory.
  • Teach your child what they want to learn. If your son/daughter is a bit of an over achiever and wants to learn a long 7 letter word first, let them. What they are interested in is what will be easiest for them to learn and retain.

Comments

    0 of 8192 characters used
    Post Comment

    No comments yet.

    working

    This website uses cookies

    As a user in the EEA, your approval is needed on a few things. To provide a better website experience, hubpages.com uses cookies (and other similar technologies) and may collect, process, and share personal data. Please choose which areas of our service you consent to our doing so.

    For more information on managing or withdrawing consents and how we handle data, visit our Privacy Policy at: https://hubpages.com/privacy-policy#gdpr

    Show Details
    Necessary
    HubPages Device IDThis is used to identify particular browsers or devices when the access the service, and is used for security reasons.
    LoginThis is necessary to sign in to the HubPages Service.
    Google RecaptchaThis is used to prevent bots and spam. (Privacy Policy)
    AkismetThis is used to detect comment spam. (Privacy Policy)
    HubPages Google AnalyticsThis is used to provide data on traffic to our website, all personally identifyable data is anonymized. (Privacy Policy)
    HubPages Traffic PixelThis is used to collect data on traffic to articles and other pages on our site. Unless you are signed in to a HubPages account, all personally identifiable information is anonymized.
    Amazon Web ServicesThis is a cloud services platform that we used to host our service. (Privacy Policy)
    CloudflareThis is a cloud CDN service that we use to efficiently deliver files required for our service to operate such as javascript, cascading style sheets, images, and videos. (Privacy Policy)
    Google Hosted LibrariesJavascript software libraries such as jQuery are loaded at endpoints on the googleapis.com or gstatic.com domains, for performance and efficiency reasons. (Privacy Policy)
    Features
    Google Custom SearchThis is feature allows you to search the site. (Privacy Policy)
    Google MapsSome articles have Google Maps embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
    Google ChartsThis is used to display charts and graphs on articles and the author center. (Privacy Policy)
    Google AdSense Host APIThis service allows you to sign up for or associate a Google AdSense account with HubPages, so that you can earn money from ads on your articles. No data is shared unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
    Google YouTubeSome articles have YouTube videos embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
    VimeoSome articles have Vimeo videos embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
    PaypalThis is used for a registered author who enrolls in the HubPages Earnings program and requests to be paid via PayPal. No data is shared with Paypal unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
    Facebook LoginYou can use this to streamline signing up for, or signing in to your Hubpages account. No data is shared with Facebook unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
    MavenThis supports the Maven widget and search functionality. (Privacy Policy)
    Marketing
    Google AdSenseThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Google DoubleClickGoogle provides ad serving technology and runs an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Index ExchangeThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    SovrnThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Facebook AdsThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Amazon Unified Ad MarketplaceThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    AppNexusThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    OpenxThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Rubicon ProjectThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    TripleLiftThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Say MediaWe partner with Say Media to deliver ad campaigns on our sites. (Privacy Policy)
    Remarketing PixelsWe may use remarketing pixels from advertising networks such as Google AdWords, Bing Ads, and Facebook in order to advertise the HubPages Service to people that have visited our sites.
    Conversion Tracking PixelsWe may use conversion tracking pixels from advertising networks such as Google AdWords, Bing Ads, and Facebook in order to identify when an advertisement has successfully resulted in the desired action, such as signing up for the HubPages Service or publishing an article on the HubPages Service.
    Statistics
    Author Google AnalyticsThis is used to provide traffic data and reports to the authors of articles on the HubPages Service. (Privacy Policy)
    ComscoreComScore is a media measurement and analytics company providing marketing data and analytics to enterprises, media and advertising agencies, and publishers. Non-consent will result in ComScore only processing obfuscated personal data. (Privacy Policy)
    Amazon Tracking PixelSome articles display amazon products as part of the Amazon Affiliate program, this pixel provides traffic statistics for those products (Privacy Policy)