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Cursive Writing In Reception


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Hello! Is anyone using cursive writing with reception children? We have been asked to adopt this approach and, having read the research which all seems very positive, are game to give it a go. However, we are a little wobbly about it! Would be grateful for comments and tips. If you live in the SE ..........can we come and see your setting?

 

Thanks

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Hi there!

Afraid I'm in the east mids! But welcome aboard anyway!!

 

Sure someone will be along soon with advice and help. Look forward to getting to know you!!

Sue :D With very bad cold !!! :o

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Hi Hillside & welcome.

thats an interesting first post but unfortunately I cant help you. Have been to a school which had beacon status for its handwriting and dyslexia friendly approach but I was never fortunate enough to visit and see it in action.

I do know that in reception they rarely put pen to paper in a more formal sense, lots of opportunities for role play writing and all the sorts of activities that are being discussed on the teaching children to write thread, together with letter formation.(all letters starting on the line).

If I remember correctly all children, without exception got a level 3 for KS1 SATs because of this joined cursive approach.

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Thanks for your responses. It is marrying the more formal letter formation with our current approach of emergent writing that is troubling me. Hopefully there is someone out there managing it!

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Hillside - I wouldn't worry too much. No where in the literature I've read "Guidance on the Development of Early Writing in Reception Class" and The National Literacy Strategy does it mention cursive writing has to be done at Reception Level. Children at this age tend to be developing better pencil control and just putting marks on to paper in their role playing or using other techniques that have been mentioned in other threads. When showing the children how to form their letters we use the flicks which is really a pre-cursive technique which is then developed in to cursive writing in Year 1 and 2 at our school.

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We use the flicks too. Contary to current trends we do letter formation everyday as part of Jolly Phonics session, on whiteboards 4 days and in a book on Friday - the chn. love this and their confidence, neatness and letter size have improved dramatically, plus all chn. participate in writing activities far more frequently during child initiated play than ever before and are using letter shapes in their writing (as well as cvc words) - budget for mark-making equipment has soared!! but isn't that great!!

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Guest freidalaurie

I'm a nursery teacher in 2 form entry school in Bexley. The school is 'trialling' using joined writing from reception after an in-house study session on the benefits. All looks promising. In nursery we are modelling writing using flicks at present - but mainly doing lots of large 'air writing' patterns and continuing our development of fine motor skills with threading, construction, all manner of mark making with paints, shaving foam etc. One thing I would like to add to discussion is the importance of the development of whole upper body physical strength and coordination which is needed to enable the natural development of 'fine motor ' skills. Consider building wih large crates, bricks, large wall painting, using ribbons and streamers to create continuous 'letter' shapes in P.E. and outside play.

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Guest Tracey F

I went to a training course about this just this week. An infant school near to ours has a wholly cursive approach BUT at Reception level they just work on handwriting patterns and physical development, they won't be pressured into expecting the children to write before they feel that they are ready, and, having taken this approach for some 9 years now they have some excellent results! They took this approach following some reasearch into the way that children in France are taught.

 

 

I just did a quick google and found a copy of the research on the TTA website- Its in pdf form, I'll try to attach it! :o

 

Other wise you can find it here

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Hi Tracey

 

just read it (the TTA report) and think it is very intersting that the french seem to place the correct emphasis on developing the mjsces that faciitate writing skils. Surely food for thought for all those who make 3 year olds 'do' worksheets of handwriting practise :o

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I am an NQT and my head wants me to adopt the cursive writing, although I'm pretty unsure, as I don't write that way and I have been concentrating on letter formation with the flick at the end. Any help would be great.

Chris

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Have I been kidding myself for the past few years...I thought cursive writing was letters with flicks? :o

 

If so, when I progress to more formal teaching of letter formation (probably late Autumn term or January), then cursive writing is how I teach the formation of the letters. I also use the same font in displays etc.

 

As part of our literacy scheme, I will do 5 minutes handwriting every day, children will begin by following dots etc and then progress to writing letters on dictation which is later followed by spelling in the summer term. We follow a very strict scheme with a set format, but it works brilliantly.

 

I'm like you Leo and hate worksheets xD , but I can't figure out another way of getting down to the specifics of letter formation without the help of worksheet templates? :(

 

I do think that it is pointless teaching the children to write letters in one way and then the following year or so expect them to change their formation, so to me it makes sense to teach cursive writing from the start of formal letter formation.

 

I also think that once children know they can write some letters, they feel more confident at using writing in their play and emergent writing may include recognisable letters as well as general mark making.

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The school my children attend start them off with cursive writing from reception year. A bit of a mess to start with, but some time in year 1 or year 2 it becomes legible. The only problem I`ve come across is with left-handed children - they can find it difficult to do the "flicks". Parents get given a sheet with cursive alphabet (upper and lower case) so we can encourage children to write this way.

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Guest Tracey F

I think the distinction here is between 'precursive' - that's writing with flicks -and 'fully' cursive - that's joining from the very start. At the school I visited they teach children to join letters right from the word go, but only once they are able to form all of the patterns etc. and are ready for it... That's my understanding of it anyway... I'm sure someone else could give a clearer picture!!

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I think your dead right TraceyF. I don't think you could have been clearer. I think it is important at pre-school level that practitioners know how their feeder schools do handwriting. I had so many children forming letters incorrectly that it has been a hard task getting them to change their ways - or maybe I had a stubborn set of children.

My own son is in Year 2 and he is not quite ready for fully joined up writing yet. He has good pencil control, forms his letters correctly and it's clear and legible with the appropriate flicks. To me that's great. I'd rather his writing be clear that just a mess of unreadable joined up handwriting plus I don't care in the slightest if he doesn't reach level 3 by the end of the school year.

 

mousebat

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All these replies are so helpful - many thanks to everyone. I have emailed Lorna but not sure if I did it properly and hope to visit her. Also, TraceyF, could you give me the name of the school in your area so I coulds contact them? I am in West Sussex so it wouldn't be too far.

 

Keep the help coming and thanks again

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HI JPH & welcome!

 

Ive heard the teacher behind the handwriting practises in the Kent school speak. Cant believe there can be 2 such schools in Kent anyway. She was very good and impressive. The children learn a series of writing patterns or shapes and use them continuously for colouring etc and enjoy it! They run courses and open days.

The Write dance materials were being advocated too.

 

With this approach the physical skill of writing becomes so embedded that that the children can then use their energy on the what to write rather than mixing the what and how. It makes sense to me.

I trialled this in my Reception classroom and the results were good.

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