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We Write To Read: Home School Handwriting Kits Review by Christine Field

Peterson Directed Handwriting
315 South Maple Ave.
Greensburg, PA 15601-3256

I'm glad I'm not the only one who is excited about beautiful handwriting! Three generations of Petersons have been excited about it--since 1908. They offer a tremendous amount of materials for parents, teachers and students.

We have all heard that handwriting is no longer important, thanks to the computer. The Petersons disagree. They assert that the process of learning to write is a critical part of learning symbolic language (i.e., reading skills). So, the brain is intricately connected with the fingers. Handwriting is a psychomotor skill that engages the brain and the fingers.

The Peterson Handwriting Method has four steps. First, the teacher illustrates and describes the strokes of the letter. Then the students "air write" the letter. Next, they fingertrace and say the movement. Finally, they write and say.

There are several levels of this program available: Preschool and Kindergarten, Grade 1, Grade 2, Grade 3, Grade 4, and Advanced Cursive for Grades 5-8. In the complete kits, you receive several items: (1) a teacher handbook with detailed lesson plans, (2) a smaller pupil book, (3) a CD of catchy tunes and rhymes, (4) animated letter cards which the student views on a computer screen and writes in the air along with the animation, (5) a slant position guide to place under the student's paper to ensure proper slant, and (6) a really nice pen for practicing!

The website above has lots of information and ideas for you to review and sample. If your child struggles with handwriting, or if you want to encourage excellence, this is an excellent choice. Handwriting is not a dying art form. It is essential exercise for the brain!

Product review by Christine Field, The Old Schoolhouse® Magazine, LLC, January 2008