Question about “Italic” handwriting

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  • 4 1/2 year old desperately wants to do “school”. I have been contemplating how to teach handwriting, I don’t necessarily use a “book” but do have them practice writing neatly. I have not done italic w/ any of my children. I have considered modern manuscript (it is curvy) or italic but I have a hard time seeing the benefits of italic, what am I missing? I had also heard that when they are used to “italic” they have a difficult time reading “regular” cursive.

    If they learn italic is the print in books difficult or an adjustement? To me it makes sense to use just regular manuscript because that is what they will be looking at in books to read?

    What do you all use, or whay type of print do you encourage?

    Thanks a bunch!



    I agree with you that it could be confusing to introduce italic handwriting while encouraging reading regular manuscript. For that very reason we have stuck with regular manuscript. If you are helping your child in reading/letter recognition it only makes sense to use the same script for beginning writing excercises. 4 and 1/2 is definitely early to begin regimented lessons, but no harm can come of spending some time with a special notebook, practicing writing. Especially if it makes your child feel like he/she is part of what the older ones are doing!

    I would suggest making your child his/her own writing practice notebook and letting him/her decorate it to give a sense of pride and ownership (in a positive way). When your child wishes to participate, great! But I wouldn’t make it part of the structured lessons, just let it be available, oversee so bad handwriting habits don’t form and encourage his/her overall desire to be part of the learning process:)


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