Designed by an occupational therapist, this resource is for preschool and kindergarten children who are ready to learn basic writing strokes. It has eight categories of pencil control movements. Strokes practiced include vertical and horizontal lines, circles, up/down bumps, sideways bumps, diagonals, x-shapes, and weaving. Use these sheets on their own or as handwriting warm-ups.
Pencil control is the efficient manipulation of a pencil in a child’s hand. It requires fluid motor control for straight lines and turns, mastery of starting and stopping strokes, and command of very small precision movements.
For each category children complete two winter, two spring, two summer, and two fall activities. Children learn about how the the weather changes during the seasons, how animals adapt and find food and shelter during all of the different times of year. They also learn about fun seasonal activities kids like to do during the different seasons!
How to Use This Resource?
1- Finger First!
•Have a child use a Finger First to make the pencil strokes. That’s right! Make the pencil strokes with no pencil.
•Why? Holding and manipulating a pencil can be challenging. We want to introduce each pencil control stroke in the simplest way possible. Children should understand and master the pencil movements first.
2- Rainbow Strokes!
•Have a child make writing strokes with short crayon pieces. Using short (1 to 1½ inch) crayons promotes proper thumb and finger placement and a better pencil grasp.
Try These Variations!
•Practice pages in this workbook again and again using different writing tools. This helps build pencil control. Try wide crayons, ball-shaped crayons, paintbrushes, fingers and finger paint, Q-tips cut in half and dipped in paint, cotton balls dipped in paint, stamps and ink, and more!
•Have children work on a vertical surface. Tape these pages onto a wall and participate this way. Working on a vertical surface builds shoulder and arm strength, tilts the wrist back to promote a better pencil grasp, and is visually less challenging for kids.
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Also, check out HANDWRITING HELP FOR KIDS to learn more about the skills children need to succeed with handwriting!
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