Give Your Small Muscles a Work Out, Too

Nothing replaces practice when it comes to learning how to write, but too much practice can get boring. Here's how to liven up your child's writing experiences.

  • Children tend to write their letters in the wrong direction. Kindergarten will help correct this, so focus on the correct letters rather than being perfect.
  • Start with their favorite letters: the letters in their name.
  • Tackle uppercase letters first.
  • Make writing fun, not a chore. If they're frustrated, they won't learn as much. Practice should be just a few minutes at a time. Take a break, run around outside, have a snack and come back to it.
  • Write your children's names with a highlighter and let them trace it.
  • Write their name at the top of a page and ask them to copy underneath.
  • Let your children write their names with their finger in paint, shaving cream or salt or sugar in a tray. You can also use bath time to write letters in the tub with shaving cream.
  • Have them sign in to any activity, like meals, snacks, playtime, etc.
  • Give their writing a purpose. Sign cards or artwork to give to relatives.
  • Use chalk and cover the sidewalk with their colorful signatures. Let them use a spray bottle to wash away the chalk and start all over again.
  • Dry erase markers are fascinating to children! Use a dry erase board or dry erase markers on a window and let them wipe away their practice.
  • When they're not writing, let them play with playdough or any squishy toy. They'll be developing their fine motor muscles and won't even realize it!
  • Tape paper to the wall and have them write standing up.
  • Use graph paper and make dots to form the letters. They can connect the dots.
  • Designate a notebook for each child to write their name in every day. How does their signature change over the days and weeks?