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Archive for January 31st, 2010

Satori zoomed through her Handwriting Without Tears books and last fall we took a two month break (from everything actually). She continued to write letters and books, so I figured that her handwriting wouldn’t suffer too much. This month we started up Spring Semester and started only doing handwriting in our HWT Grade 1 book two times a week (we used to do it 3x a week). We’re doing one letter at a time, just a few pages.

However, I’ve noticed that her handwriting is not improving, perhaps getting sloppier, and showing some inverted letters. Lowercase letters are not on the proper line, they rarely descend below the line and sometimes aren’t tall. In HWT lowercase is either tall, small, or descending. I’m seeing this in our ETC workbook and all of Satori’s creative papers that she does on her own accord.

Time for some emergency practice! I’m using the StartWrite software which features HWT fonts to generate worksheets with all lowercase (we’ve actually never done this before). With this software I can specify not only the font, but the shading, letter type (dotted, dashed, or solid), starting dot, directional arrows, guide line options, and so much more. Our favorite is the lightest shading in solid, with a red starting dot, and only the middle and bottom lines. Just like HWT recommends.

This colorful worksheet Satori all the tall letters are circled in red, small are in blue, and descending are in green. I hope this will help her remember these if we do this worksheet now and then.

We will be adding these StartWrite worksheets everyday until her handwriting improves. We’ll also slowly go through Handwriting Without Tears, letter by letter this time to make sure we’re forming our letters correctly.

I’ll list a few examples of our worksheets generated this week. Below is Upper and Lowercase letters with directional  arrows.

Here’s an example of just the starting dot.

This day we covered “d” in our HWT book. They have clipart built-in to the software, how convenient! As you can see, Satori likes to add her own embellishements (nex tim sing wis me). We’ll be working on her pronunciation so she can spell correctly, lol!

Here’s some pages out of her HWT book, we’re reviewing the lowercase letters which we learned in the fall.

She’s pretty good at writing numbers, but 8 is a bit awkward. On these pages, Satori will make her own checkmark box and check it off if her HWT book “forgets” to include it. 😉

I promised I would review some of our favorite games and I realized I haven’t done any yet, so here is out first one – Rush Hour Jr. This Junior version is designed for ages 6-8, but we are just fine at age 5, perhaps even younger kids would enjoy this. I consider these types of games to be great fun as well as excellent ways to get the brain challenged.

The object is to get the ice cream truck out of the traffic grid. Cars can only move back and forth.

The one disadvantage is that these vehicles are very light plastic and can easily pop off their tracks. But once we paid heed to this and were careful, they stayed on their tracks better.

Daddy and Satori had a great time playing the game. I think the normal version of Rush Hour (get the Standard, not Deluxe version) will find its way into our house very soon!

And in the photo below – pop! The Ice Cream Truck sails away free!