Teaching Handwriting in the Classroom: Research-Based Recommendations and Commercially Available Programs

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LeBlanc Penny, Stephanie
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Mount Saint Vincent University
Despite ever-evolving technological advances, writing in many settings, including school, still involves paper and pencil or pen. Writing skills have been positively linked to academic achievement at school, especially reading. Therefore, how students are taught handwriting is important, but in Nova Scotia, guidelines for this are not in the curriculum. The Handwriting Without Tears (HWT) Program and the Center on Accelerating Student Learning (CASL) Handwriting Program are two handwriting programs that have been shown to be effective. These programs were compared on five important elements (four founded in research, one of importance to teachers and school boards) of handwriting programs. It was concluded that to teach according to the most effective elements, the CASL Program, which is available for free on the internet, would be recommended to teachers as it better addressed more of the key elements. Limitations of the study are discussed as well as suggestions for teachers, school boards, and school psychologists.
Handwriting, teaching, Nova Scotia,