“Should I Teach My Child Cursive If She Hasn’t Mastered Printing?” (Our Story)

“I want to learn cursive! I want to learn cursive!”

Is that something your child is saying too?

And are you as overwhelmed as I was by that statement?

Last year at this time, my daughter was ready to learn cursive, but here’s what I was concerned about:

She hadn’t mastered printing yet.

Sound familiar?

HOMESCHOOL MOMS: Is it OK to start teaching cursive if a child hasn't really mastered regular printing? That was my dilemma last year with my 7-year-old daughter. I was torn… she really, REALLY wanted to learn, but was it OK to teach? Here our story (and the solution we found to this problem!) If you’re in the same situation with your child, you’ll appreciate this!

Fine motor skills: why are they so important? How I'm using Write Through the Bible Jr. to use fine motor skills to transition my daughter to cursive writing next year. Vibrant Homeschooling

Is it OK to start teaching cursive if a child hasn’t really mastered regular printing?

We need to ask that question not just from a child’s skill-set level, but also from an emotional perspective. My daughter may still need more work in her printing, but would have crushed her heart if, instead of introducing cursive, we continued to practice printing.

So many things to consider, right?

And then I got a brainstorm: D’Nealian style. That would be the perfect transition between the two since it wasn’t quite printing and it wasn’t quite cursive.

It seemed like the perfect halfway point.

Fine motor skills: why are they so important? How I'm using Write Through the Bible Jr. to use fine motor skills to transition my daughter to cursive writing next year. Vibrant Homeschooling

thickpaperbackfront_604x964--WEBI’d heard about the merits of Intoxicated on Life’s other handwriting program Write Through the Bible and learned that they were about to release Write Through the Bible, Junior (which seemed like a great fit for her).

I happily received a review copy and was thrilled to see that Princessa took to it so quickly.

In fact, all I had to tell her was that this new book
was the “big girl transition step to cursive” and she was completely sold.

What I really like about this 32-week handwriting curriculum is that it incorporates scripture into the learning lesson.

In fact, our daily handwriting lessons in Write Through the Bible, Junior have become a fun way for us to talk one-on-one through that week’s Bible verse and character trait.

Each day’s lesson also includes some sort of an activity sheet (cut-and-paste, color, circling, etc) which adds an element of fun (and an additional layer of fine motor skills practice).

Fine motor skills: why are they so important? How I'm using Write Through the Bible Jr. to use fine motor skills to transition my daughter to cursive writing next year. Vibrant Homeschooling

Mr. Charming wanted to join the writing fun. Or at least the coloring part.

We are using the ESV Version, but there are King James Versions also available, as well as traditional printing (“ball-and-stick”), D’Nealean and cursive styles in both translations.

I love that you can even download the first lesson for free.

How Can We Best Prep Our Preschoolers for Handwriting?

Luke Gilkerson of Intoxicated on Life (publisher of the Write Through the Bible curriculum) shares this about the importance of teaching kids fine motor skills.

In our home, our youngest is still not quite ready for a formal handwriting curriculum, but I’ve committed myself to start intentionally building his fine motor skills now so that we can be that much more ahead for the preschool-to-early-elementary years. I probably didn’t do enough of that with my daughter.

To start, we will be using the free Fine Motor Skills Printable Pack (also from Intoxicated on Life). This free download is a companion product to the Write Through the Bible, Jr curriculum, but it also works as a stand-alone resource.

Fine motor skills: why are they so important? How I'm using Write Through the Bible Jr. to use fine motor skills to transition my daughter to cursive writing next year. Vibrant Homeschooling

It looks like so much fun: making faces with Play-Doh mats; building letters with Wiki Stix; learning to draw by grid, etc! Mama may have to do some parallel play here.

Along with more information about the free printable, the post mentions 21 other tips for preparing preschoolers for handwriting success.

So many great ideas here! I am going to have to put together a “fine motor skills” bin (with all of these goodies) for my 3-year-old to play with.

Eventually, in about a year, we’ll start him on the Write Through the Bible, Junior: D’Nealian curriculum. I think it will be a great fit for him too!

No matter where you child’s handwriting ability is, it’s OK to customize your curriculum to help them get where they need to be!

About Alicia Michelle

As a wife and mom to four passionate kids, Alicia Michelle loves encouraging other moms with practical tips for joy-filled living in everyday life, especially in parenting, marriage, faith and health.Alicia is the owner/editor of Your Vibrant Family; the author of Plan to Be Flexible, The Back to School Survival Manual; and the creator/producer of the "7 Days to a Less Angry Mom Online Video Course,", Christ-Centered Christmas Resources and My Memory Box Organizing System. In addition, she is a monthly contributor for several popular family blogs, including Crosswalk.com.Follow her on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, and Pinterest.

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