Studies have shown that older schoolchildren handwrite almost 50% of the time and younger children handwrite almost 90% of the time so good handwriting is crucial!
During a school day, children write in workbooks, make notes, fill in worksheets, write exam papers, write down their homework and also write texts. Handwriting is an integral part of a typical school day. Pupils generally try their best to make their work legible and neat as their ideas flow from their mind to their hand. We can see the frustration when writing skills are undermined by illegible handwriting. Teachers may misjudge their pupils as being less intelligent or mark their work down as they struggle to read the content. If the same child had good handwriting, this would not happen.
Research has shown that letter formation is a key component in reading and writing skills.
Research has shown that learning to form letters by hand is a critical foundation for a pupil’s literacy and academic success. The goal of the Magic Link Handwriting Programme is for pupils to be able to write automatically and neatly to fluently write in a neat cursive style. Research has shown that the correct formation of letters of the alphabet is the most important factor in reading and writing skills. A study in 2005, showed that children who independently wrote by hand improve their learning and were able to memorize letters much more efficiently than tracing, copying or typing.
This automaticity of handwriting is important for students’ continuing academic success.
Studies show that direct instruction measurably improves students’ handwriting legibility and fluency through primary and secondary children. Being able to write both neatly and automatically is important for students’ continuing academic success. They can use the stored memory of how words should look in order to write them fluently.
Children who struggle with writing by hand may avoid writing tasks and may also suffer from poor self-esteem.
It is often noticed that students who struggle with writing by hand may avoid writing tasks. The fact that these children avoid writing means that they do not enjoy composing and writing for pleasure. If they write less, they may struggle with spelling because of a lack of practice. (Montgomery, 2012). Research has shown that children may feel reluctant to write because of lack of self-esteem by their peers who complete their classroom written work more quickly.
Older students still write by hand in school. The effects of poor handwriting can carry over into adulthood in job applications. Even in the era of keyboards and smartphones. The skill of handwriting is still important skills in the 21st-century classroom. Fluency in cursive writing is crucial. In order to perform well, pupils need to focus on speed, legibility and automaticity. The Magic Link Handwriting Programme teaches good handwriting. It and provides direct instruction and practice for both primary and secondary school students. This teaches a lifelong skill which supports academic and professional success and is never too late to learn!