Monday, February 25, 2013

TOS Crew - Handwriting Without Tears

Over the years I honestly haven't focused much detailed instruction on handwriting. All of the boys learned their letters when learning phonics and then I used another program that has a lot of copywork which worked well. But now that I have reviewed Handwriting Without Tears it makes me wish I would have gone this direction with everyone.

Handwriting without Tears Logo

Handwriting Without Tears is a multisensory curriculum that engages the student helping them to learn and is fun too. It is "easy to teach, and easy to learn, in just 15 minutes a day".

HWOT Kindergarten Workbook     HWOT Kindergarten Teacher's Guide

How It Worked for Our Family

I used HWT for the Kindergarten level mainly with Seppy but also somewhat included Missy. The Teachers Guide is packed full of information and activities that at first I was overwhelmed. I am used to copywork and what I liked about this program is that it was much more than copying letters on a page and includes setting foundation skills.

With Sep I started having him learn to draw MatMan which was interesting to see how just going through a simple exercise and online game taught him in minutes how to add more detail to his drawing. What starts as an attempt at a circle for a head with two legs sticking out suddenly includes a body, arms, etc. And that is the beginning of learning to form letters.

 photo Sep-playing-matman_zpse197ba3e.jpg

There are so many things you can do with this program and one of them is using wooden pieces to spell out letters. You can purchase them but there is also a pattern in the book to make your own. I made my own out of craft foam although did improvise as I only had the small pieces of foam. The smile face in the top left corner signifies the starting point. Seppy and Missy had fun seeing all of the letters they could make out of the various pieces.

HWT - foam pieces photo HWT---foam-pieces_zpsaba0db26.jpg

What I Liked

My children have all written letters backwards or interchanged them. And this is a common observation I've heard from Moms. What I like about Handwriting Without Tears is that they teach writing letters in such a way that prevents reversals. They begin by having the child print in a gray box starting the letter at the top left corner with the first line being on the left and the next part of the letter on the right. Always the left to right formation. I am curious to see how Seppy does in the long-term after he has gotten through all of the letters. You begin with the capitals so we haven't gotten to the point of letters that reverse.

I also like the catchy songs and phrases to help remember things like "Where Do You Start Your Letters? song (at the top). And the phrase "frog jump to the top" to remind the child to jump back to the starting corner as in the letter F.

This curriculum is simple to pick up and go. The only confusing part for me was all of the introduction before getting to any writing. But I found that you simply do what is needed for your child depending on where they are at.


You can purchase the Kindergarten Student Activity book Letters and Number for Me for $8.25. This workbook has black and white simple drawings and is not overloaded with color and graphics which I really like.

You can purchase the Kindergarten Teacher's Guide for $9.25. I did find this helpful at least for the kindergarten level as there is so much information on letter formation, helpful hints, online links with video demonstrations, etc.

Disclaimer: I received a copy of this product through the Schoolhouse Review Crew in exchange for my honest opinion. I was not required to write a positive review nor was I compensated in any other way. All opinions expressed are my own or those of my family. I am disclosing this in accordance with FTC regulations.  

No comments:

Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...