Handwriting and fine motor/muscle control

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  • Sandi Luciano

    Hi!  My 6.5 year old struggles with handwriting.  I suspect he has extra trouble with fine motor and muscle control.  We have been using Handwriting Without Tears, and I have been going slow, just learning one letter per day which only takes about 5 minutes.  But at age 6.5 years old he still struggles with writing his own name properly.  Does Charolette Mason talk about what to do when the child struggles with fine motor muscle control?  I was thinking of trying to do more on the chalkboard and maybe a tray of sand.  I also found a lot of helpful OT  (occupational therapy) exercises to help finger, hand and shoulder muscles prepare for handwriting exercises.  I was thinking of incorporating some of that too – and also more scissor work, drawing lessons, mazes, etc to help.  Anyone have similar struggles?  What worked?  I am worried that I am not doing enough to help my child but don’t want to exhaust him with a bunch of handwriting assignments when he clearly struggles with muscle control.

    Oh and one more quesiton… outside of the 5-10 minutes of handwriting, do your children who are learning to write do any other writing throughout the school day?  Even as much as a simple word.  If so what writing do they do in other subjects and how much is it?


    My oldest son hand writing came easily, my youngest not so much, LOL.

    At 6.5 he was doing one or two words a day, that was it 🙂 Now at 7 he can copy words for about 5 minutes and do maybe 12 words in that time.


    I would not worry about it at this young age, I would do as you are thinking, chalk board, sand, bigger movements. 6.5 is still pretty young with plenty of time 🙂

    You could also do other fine motor skill activities such as building legos or other building activities that require small pieces. I think that helped out my youngest a lot because the hand eye cordination required and it was something he enjoyed too 🙂


    Hi, these are some things I did with my son that helped his fine motor skills tremendously.

    Playing with Playdoh

    Crushing egg shells with a mortar and pestle.

    Using a push pin to punch holes on lines I would draw on a piece of cardboard. I’d make straight lines, zig zags, swirls, etc.

    Hope that helps!

    Sandi Luciano


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