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    Question about 1st Grade Cursive.

    The New American Cursive books have so much practice, verbal cues, and content. We were excited to discover them in the latest catalog. The workbooks look wonderful and the CD seems very adaptable. Plus your page of explaining the "why" of cursive writing is SO helpful.

    Since October we have been using 2 cursive programs at our house with my grandson who is dyslexic. He is doing fantastic. Mainly we use The Logic of English and we use parts of Diana Hanbury King's Cursive Writing Skills for Right Handed Students. Mrs. King has years of experience working with dyslexics at her school for dyslexics in the east. They each advocate ALWAYS beginning a lowercase letter on the baseline and then swing up, or in whatever manner of action the letter requires. This seems especially helpful for students who have directionality issues.

    1. Please comment on why you do not begin on the baseline for circle letters in particular.
    2. Also, I would like to have a copy of the recommendations of the Penmanship Council of America to show parents and other teachers.

    As a supervising homeschool teacher and dyslexia consultant, I'm currently advising several families on curriculum so your comments would be invaluable. Thank you so much!

    #2
    I cannot comment from MP but as a mama-teacher this is something that has affected us lately.

    My daughter is almost five (late summer) and she's been writing manuscript for about two years now. We planned to start NAC I this fall with First Grade but due to a review I'm currently working through LOE Foundations A with the Cursive workbook. We got to "curve" and it brought tears, attempted the lowercase a, and she melted down. She's never had a problem writing and is a bit if a perfectionist. We got out our NAC I book and I copied the "a" pages (since we'll use it in full in the fall) to see if that helped. I also printed the "a" page from Joy of Handwriting. JOH was better than the blind attempt from LOE.

    However it was not until she tried the NAC page that she was able to do it and make it remotely resemble an a. Starting up higher was easy for her, but trying to start at the baseline and go up left her freaking out. Going from one a to write a scene and third on succession was okay for her Andrade sense. But trying to get her to curve up, roll, swish, and down she couldn't do. Skip the curve and she was happy and proud of her letter.

    While we haven't gone beyond a yet (as this was only last week) the difference was profound in her attitude and mentality toward the task. It definitely puts MP NAC I in my good list.
    Margaret of Georgia, in west TN – Enginerd’s wife and Mama

    2019-2020/-2021 · Homeschooling since 2011.
    Trekking along at a student self-pace...
    DD Summer 2009 · 5th/6th + BS3&4
    DD Summer 2011 · SC4/SC5*6 + BS3&4
    DS Summer 2014 · K/SC2 + SL P + K
    DD Summer 2017 · Pre + SL T
    DS Autumn 2019 • Baby

    Memoria Scholé Academy
    Blog: Creative Madness Mama
    @ CherryBlossomMJ

    Comment


      #3
      Supervismom,

      Please take this with a grain of salt since I've only got experience with one dyslexic child and she's still quite young.....

      I'm not yet sure about starting without the curves but it seems similar in concept to the 'magic c' taught in Handwriting without tears for letters like a, d, g, etc..... so I don't see it as being terribly confusing and for us, my daughter already knows this way so it should be an easy transition to connect them). We also just started NAC mostly because my daughter saw it in her pile for starting next year and asked repeatedly to try it. I said yes --but made copies of the first few pages so we could restart next year if it is too much

      R/T dyslexia my bigger concern is when I look at the capital F. It seems to start at the top right, go backward horizontally and then down (kind of like a backwards 7 with a cross in the middle). Since this is very much opposite of the how I've taught her the letters need to go, I see this being confusing. For me, I showed her different F's and she preferred the more classic version that I was taught so I'll probably substitute this letter.

      Since the program is designed for even young children to handle, it's pretty simplistic in form and seems like a good choice to start out with.

      Comment


        #4
        Question - Cursive

        CherryBlossomMJ & CelticaDea,

        Thank you for your quick and thorough replies!

        Could it be that for children who learn manuscript first, done it for quite a while, and have that habit that it's hard for them to switch to do cursive?

        Question 1. The 1st graders I've worked with had major directionality and sequencing of sound issues. Starting them on the baseline made this difficulty disappear in their writing and spelling. It also helped them with connecting the letters right away in words with 2-3 phonemes.

        Unlike your daughter though, they did not have much experience with manuscript since they were having so much trouble with it before turning 5. They could not remember the numbers on a clock or where to start either. They also had trouble keeping their letters on the line, etc.

        The HWOT paper seemed to be a good start for them. We also purchased the sandpaper flashcards from LOE, worked in rice and sand and on the iPad while saying the verbal prompts from the workbook. Plus we did large motor work and practice in the air with a letter before attempting anything with pencil and paper. Seemed to work really well. Now in 5 months most of the lowercase cursive are becoming automatic when doing dictation. They are really motivated. Now we've moved the the Diana Hanbury King book since it has more practice and I'm looking for more appropriate OG sequenced practice.

        CherryBlossom, could you explain what you meant by the "blind attempt from LOE".

        Question 2 - I'd really like to know why the author of Cursive First chose this method over another. Was it because of the recommendations of the Penmanship Council of America? Is there research on which is better for dyslexics or children with dysgraphia? Starting lowercase letter practice on the baseline or not?

        Sorry if it sounds too picky. I've just seen some kids who have really struggled trying to learn cursive once they are older.

        Thank you!

        Comment


          #5
          Question - Cursive

          Sorry for the mistake. I'm asking the author of the NAC not cursive first. I really like how the pages are presented in NAC so wondering about the rationale of starting on the baseline vs. using the clock letter starting point for cursive.

          Comment


            #6
            Re: blind attempt

            In the LOE workbook there is an example and the student writes it. While with NAC and JOH you trace for a bit before writing it alone.

            JOH has hollow tracing. NAC has dotted lines.

            I'm not saying LOE doesn't work. We're not far enough along to really comment on that. We do have the sandpaper letters too, but so far that hasn't helped. Not to say it won't.
            Margaret of Georgia, in west TN – Enginerd’s wife and Mama

            2019-2020/-2021 · Homeschooling since 2011.
            Trekking along at a student self-pace...
            DD Summer 2009 · 5th/6th + BS3&4
            DD Summer 2011 · SC4/SC5*6 + BS3&4
            DS Summer 2014 · K/SC2 + SL P + K
            DD Summer 2017 · Pre + SL T
            DS Autumn 2019 • Baby

            Memoria Scholé Academy
            Blog: Creative Madness Mama
            @ CherryBlossomMJ

            Comment


              #7
              Hello.

              I had to ask Iris Hatfield for help on this one. Here is her response:

              1. You are on the right track, a simple cursive is much easier for Dyslexic students than the stop and start strokes in printing. We purposely eliminated the rigid, unnecessary initial strokes on all letters. To make it easy for students, we use the starting dots and directional arrows on letters. Once they learn these simple, legible cursive letters it is a faster script to execute. We also simplified the method of connecting letters to just three easy to remember connection strokes.

              2. Here is one of the latest endorsements from a member of the Penmanship Council. "Iris Hatfield has done it again! Teach Yourself Cursive makes practice easy and interesting, with plenty of guides and incentives to keep us improving in handwriting that is consistent, legible, and yes, faster than printing. Above all, New American Cursive is proven to be based on positive psychological principles.”-Willa W. Smith: Ed. D.

              All the best,



              Iris Hatfield, Handwriting Coach

              Author, New American Cursive

              Penmanship Program

              www.NewAmericanCursive.com

              502-253-1954



              NAC developing brains, one writer at a time.

              Comment


                #8
                Question - Cursive

                Tanya!

                Thank you for digging into this. Very helpful!

                Does the Penmanship Council have a web page that I can share with others?

                Warm Regards

                Comment


                  #9
                  Hello.

                  Iris says that the Penmanship Council does not have a website.

                  Tanya

                  Comment

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