3 Tips for Teaching Handwriting when Yours Stinks

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My handwriting has always been neat. Manuscript or cursive doesn’t matter. I get compliments on it often. My husband’s, however, is barely legible. Oh he can write fairly neatly if he absolutely has to, but his “normal” handwriting rivals that of the best-known surgeons and attorneys.

Are you worried about teaching handwriting in your homeschool, because yours stinks? Here are 3 Tips to help!! :: www.inallyoudod.net

Since I have neat handwriting, it never dawned on me what kids might think with less than neat handwriting – until my husband tried to fill-in one day. Our oldest saw his dads handwriting and couldn’t understand why it was so messy. Our son asked his dad how he could teach him, if his own handwriting wasn’t neat. That was the moment I had realized it might be difficult to teach handwriting if yours stinks.

A couple months ago we were able to review a curriculum here on the blog that many of you said you wanted, but your handwriting wasn’t great. And that got me to thinking…how can you teach handwriting if yours isn’t neat? No worries…it can be done and here are some tips to help!

Find a good curriculum

First, a good curriculum is important. You need to find one that gives clear instructions on prewriting – lines, zig-zags and shapes – to help develop those fine motor skills. If the fine motor skills are not developed properly, it will make handwriting that much more difficult as they get older. Working on those skills and getting their muscle-memory working will go a long way in their handwriting. And remember…its all about practice. The more they do it, the better they will get – generally speaking.

Re-Learn it with them

When our oldest pointed out the fact that my husband’s handwriting wasn’t great, he sat down and began to work alongside our son. He showed him that you’re never too old to work on your handwriting as well as, learning proper handwriting is important. Showing them our flaws can be the best way to teach our children. We show them we’re not perfect, but learning new skills…or re-learning old ones is important at any age.

Use yours as an example

You might be embarrassed by your handwriting, but use it to your advantage! When our oldest was struggling with his own handwriting and not wanting to practice, my husband used his own handwriting as an example. He showed him how fast he could write with his messy handwriting, which thoroughly impressed my son. Until my husband went to read what he wrote and couldn’t. He told our son that taking notes in school was nearly impossible, because he could rarely go back and study from them, as he couldn’t read his own handwriting. I’m not sure how much that all sunk in to a five year old, but he did try harder after that.

Our Favorite Handwriting Curriculums

Write Through the Bible Junior – this is a great beginner curriculum as it works on all areas of fine motor skills.

A Reason for Handwriting – this is what I used with our oldest from the beginning through 3rd grade. I like that it coordinated with their spelling curriculum and gave us some Bible throughout the week as well.

Explode the Code – We tried this with our oldest as it combines handwriting and reading/phonics, but he was bored with them because he already knew his letters and sounds. However, with our Middles, it has been great. It helped improve their handwriting and we’re learning to read as well. It has been a wonderful fit.

Try our Mastering Handwriting Curriculum

This digital curriculum goes from prewriting, in the beginning stages of teaching your child how to properly hold a pencil, into manuscript and cursive writing side-by-side.

Letters are introduced in alphabetical order. Rather, I introduce them in an order I have seen effective in my own children. From the formation of the letters to the sounds they make, I believe this order works best.


To download the Mastering Handwriting Digital Curriculum, simply add it to your cart, then checkout. Upon checkout, you will be added to my Weekly Newsletter list.

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Annette has been married to her husband and best friend since 2003. Together they are raising their six children to follow the Lord’s will, no matter what. Annette longs for the day when she will meet all her angel babies who have entered heaven before her. She enjoys creating fun and engaging printables, unit studies and curriculum for homeschool families. You can follow her crazy life at In All You Do where she blogs about marriage, parenting, and homeschooling all while maintaining her sanity. She is also the owner of Thrifty Homeschoolers, where she shares free printables and resources from around the web as well as deals on curriculum and homeschooling resources. You can also keep up with her via Facebook, Twitter, Instagram and Pinterest.
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This Post Has 3 Comments

  1. This article caught my attention because I have 3 children who all have pretty bad handwriting! (Thanks for linking up with us on Hip Homeschool Moms, by the way!) One of the things I want to work on over the summer is handwriting. Like you, my handwriting is pretty good, but my husband’s is pretty bad, and so far I haven’t been able to get my kids to develop good handwriting either. Thanks for your suggestions and the reminder that we need to work on this!

    1. Well, I hope the tips help! Good luck! And thanks for hosting!

  2. hahhaa I been told mine is aweful. however I don’t agree. I can read mine even if others can’t. what I can’t read is that fancy looking handwriting that others say is sooooo neat. they have good handwriting. not to me. I can’t read it.

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