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Penmanship

Discussion in 'Optimal Kids' started by Stardust, Aug 10, 2017.

  1. Stardust

    Stardust Silver

    My 7 year old who was diagnosed with ADHD has troubled penmanship. She is a very good speller and can form sentences just fine. Getting is on paper is a struggle. It is hard to motivate her to write. I saw no improvement with occupational therapy. Does anyone have any recommendations?
  2. caroline

    caroline Moderator

    maybe this is way off base - my daughter has dyslexia.

    It seems that it takes many different forms. When my daughter reads - it is all just separate words to her with no connection.
    some people see colours, for others the words just fall off the page.

    A friend of ours has a son who had difficulty reading - so they gave him comic books. It made a huge difference when this boy could read something that was of interest. He is a really bright kid btw.

    I understand that your daughter's problem is writing - but something is not connecting properly I would think

    What is her diet like? Is she playing outside a lot?
  3. Sue-UK

    Sue-UK Gold

    I taught my children that writing could be fun by getting them to write about what interested them ... And if they couldn't spell a word or just wanted to be creative (DD loves art), they could incorporate pictures or find a different way of expressing a word ... So a line of writing might include a picture of a spaceship, or a dinosaur or a princess .... If they were writing the word red, they could write the word itself in red ... (DS2 learned how to spell the colours from that.) My DD was a bit older so she would write the word circle as a circle, the words "upside down"....upside down :D it became a game to find words and phrases that she could express in a different way... It was a way of giving them self confidence - if writing can be seen to be interesting, and fun, it became "easy" (and I think it helps form neural networks between different parts of the brain), it honours what they know rather than focusing on what they can't do, and it helped motivation. :)
    Jude, Stardust and caroline like this.
  4. Stardust

    Stardust Silver

    In the beginning, we thought it was Dyslexia. Well, the school thought it was dyslexia. We had her assessed and they determined she was not. I agree with the not connecting properly. Her motor skills in general are lacking. Her diet is 75% Epi-Paleo. My kids have had a more difficult time shifting over than I did. She does play outside most of the day. She actually dreads being indoors which is great. I'm going to sign her up for Piano class and see what other motor skill activities I can add. How old is your daughter? I was diagnosed with dyslexia as a child as well.
    caroline likes this.
  5. Stardust

    Stardust Silver

    Those are some great strategies! I need to keep her interested in school. She is so bright! I do not want her to begin to dislike learning because writing is not fun for her. She lacks self-confidence in her writing ability. She is in 3rd grade this year and by next year she will have to be writing so much more.
  6. caroline

    caroline Moderator

    I am a grandmother .....my daughter loves cooking so she can read cookbooks and really connects with that.

    Actually - do you cook with your daughter? maybe reading a recipe and writing out in simple ingredient points would interest her?

    My younger daughter was a very difficult eater. We got her to chose a recipe and then help shop for stuff and then help make it.

    That made a huge difference - she then had control over the process.
    Stardust and Lahelada like this.
  7. Sue-UK

    Sue-UK Gold

    Its been a bumpy road since DS2 was a young child, light sensitive, food phobic, water phobic, anxious, delayed speech development ... (turned out he is incredibly sensitive to the effects of fluoride). Watching his inner doctor guide him to recovery when it got the chance is one of my greatest joys. A lot of moments of grace. We chose the guitar over the piano ... DS2 was keen to learn electric guitar, the lessons were geared mainly around acoustic but with enough electric to keep him motivated. Its turned out that he is good at it, but its not his passion, even the electric guitar. For lessons, he would do just enough practice, but if he'd done more because he was passionate about it, he would be exceptional. He sometimes goes outside and sits under the trees with his acoustic guitar, and every time he does I have another moment of grace. :).
    Stardust, Phosphene and caroline like this.
  8. caroline

    caroline Moderator

    What is your daughter most interested in? I expect that would propel her forward ....as Sue just said.

    Another thought .....my youngest daughter always got really, really bad reports about her hand writing. She would always come home crying because her teaches said she wasn't trying hard enough. The poor little thing would just be sobbing and saying "Mommy - I am trying so hard"

    It turns out a Doctor said she may have arthritis in her fingers ....This is so many years later so when I think about it seems a little odd but obviously her fingers were stiff for some reason.

    She now has children of her own but her handwriting is still quite large and almost child like. Btw - she is a very bright young woman and her daughter has been identified as gifted.......so it is nothing to do with intelligence. She has a science degree ....and maybe more telling .....she is an incredible people person.
    Stardust likes this.
  9. Stardust

    Stardust Silver


    I cook with her every so often. She loves SCIENCE! Last year it was apparent to her that her handwriting was dramatically different then her classmates. It weighed on her pretty bad. It was also mentioned at every intervention meeting we had with the school. She is very bright as well and often says she is trying her best .
    caroline likes this.
  10. Stardust

    Stardust Silver

    Isn't is amazing to watch recovering right in front of you?! My daughter has come a long way as well. Passion can lead to amazing things. I suspect she will like piano but it might not be her passion either lol. She loves sewing, science, math and roaming my parents 5 acres. Can't say I blame her.
    caroline likes this.
  11. caroline

    caroline Moderator

    When it comes right down it it ....does it really matter what her handwriting looks like? Obviously she has many skills and interests.

    Think about it .....you said she loves sewing- so her motor skills are good enuf for that? It seems odd that her hand writing is less than ideal?

    Maybe something happened earlier on at her school and she was made to feel very self conscious about her writing????

    Maybe her teachers should lay off - and applaud the things she is great at?!!

    What instrument would she prefer? Have you thought of a ukulele? they are pretty easy to play when just starting and may give her a sense of accomplishment.......
    Stardust likes this.
  12. caroline

    caroline Moderator

    One other thought ......bread making is quite therapeutic. All the kneading may give you some insight into how agile her hands/fingers are?

    What could be more rewarding than baking a loaf of bread!

    The more I think about it ....why does it matter so much about her handwriting. Maybe she should become a Doctor!

    I bet Jack would have some interesting insight into this......
    Stardust likes this.
  13. Sue-UK

    Sue-UK Gold

    I did this with travel for 3 years when the kids were going to miss school (which at 6 and 4 wasn't such an issue with the school, but it helped the parent/teacher relationship that we weren't ignoring their education while we were away). But we went shopping and they each picked a book to use as a holiday journal, so their choice of colour and pattern/pictures on the cover were their own. Each day they would write a few lines on what in that day had interested them. It became their holiday souvenir. If they were enjoying something and wanted to put it in their journal later they could choose a postcard, or they would draw a picture, stick in a bus ticket etc.... The books they had chosen, a pen, colouring stuff and a glue stick ...their own interests and imagination, and no pressure. But the more they were interested in something the more they would write .... Maybe your daughter could journal what she notices on her roams in your parents 5 acres? And/or one on other subjects she finds interesting, perhaps a journal for each? The trick is to let them write spontaneously, no worrying about their handwriting or spelling, only help if asked, and if there are days when they really don't feel like doing it, or don't want to write more than a line, don't worry about it. ;)
    Stardust and caroline like this.
  14. Stardust

    Stardust Silver

    She absolutely has many skills and interests. She actually is always working with slime, putty and playdough. Writing increases in 3rd grade so this will be an interesting year. I don't have to worry about teachers this year because I'm the teacher. I pulled her out to homeschool. We saw regression when we vaccinated her at 2.5 years old and California's SB277 forced vaccine law was a problem. She left the school system with insecurity about writing though. I want to build that confidence back up. Piano is her preferred instrument I never considered the ukulele. I will look into that. Thank you Caroline!
    caroline likes this.
  15. Stardust

    Stardust Silver

    How awesome!! What a fun thing to do while traveling. We started a journal with an idea from a homeschooling workshop I went to. We basically write messages back and forth. She has loved it so far! I love the idea of journaling at my parents. She climbs trees, makes "survival" tools, talks to bugs, builds shelters and many more things out there. Running out of ideas to write about will not be possible. Sue, thank you for all the suggestions!
    caroline likes this.
  16. Penny

    Penny New Member

    I love how Montessori does hand writing - they trace sandpaper letters glued onto a wooden block - then they are constantly pulling pegs from puzzles (3 finger grip) - then they have a moveable alphabet where they make their own words, then read them, then write them - they are writing cursive at the age of 3... it's amazing to see:
    http://www.infomontessori.com/language/handwriting-introduction.htm
    caroline likes this.
  17. Sue-UK

    Sue-UK Gold

    Another thought is a special pen for journaling... I was watching a you tube video on making a slime pen using the inside of a biro through a plastic Walmart bought syringe, and then filling the syringe with coloured and glittery slime. My kids would have loved that ... I can feel a Nana moment coming on ......:D

    Another thought is chalk ... writing in chalk on a driveway, a smooth rock, chalk board signs to go in her shelters .... If a child writes "smooth rock" on a rock, it relates the written pattern of words to the visual pattern of the object. Or that written symbol patterns are a meaningful communication .. This way and arrows ..... (Name)'s den .....

    How about a map? - she can make a map of a section of the 5 acres, mark or draw in the trees or things of interest and then write in what it is .... oak tree, lots of x bugs/birds/flowers here .... favourite shelter ....
    Last edited: Aug 21, 2017 at 3:27 AM
    caroline likes this.

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