St. Bartholomew s Primary School. Handwriting Policy

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1 St. Bartholomew s Primary School Handwriting Policy

2 Philosophy The school aims to help children to develop their handwriting skills by initially concentrating on developing one consistent style; gradually widening their experiences to develop confidence with a range of scripts as seen in the wider environment. Our children will be entering into the modern, technological, computer dominated workplace on leaving school so our Key Stage 2 children are therefore familiar with keyboards. However we feel that it is essential for all children to develop a consistent, legible and free-flowing handwriting style. Why? So that the children have a range of skills to draw upon Provides the children with another way of expressing themselves and to communicate with others To improve their co-ordination skills Handwriting is closely linked with spelling. A good free-flowing handwriting style assists with their spelling. Aim To help children to develop a flowing and legible handwriting style, which is well set out and organised, to enable them to communicate their meaning effectively when writing for different purposes. Resources Variety of age appropriate writing implements, triangular pencils, chalk, pens etc. Roller ball pens for use with Y4 children looking to transition. Pupil handwriting books for both formal and informal lessons Activity resource material to practice and consolidate Guidelines

3 Teaching and Learning The school has adopted a whole school approach so that teaching is consistent. New parents are given a copy of the school s handwriting style. Every new teaching member of staff also receives a copy of the handwriting style in the Staff Handbook. Ways of helping children to develop are discussed at parent workshops. Teachers own handwriting, when marking work, writing on boards or displays and producing activity resource material should provide a good role model for the children i.e. clear, even and neat. Special attention is paid to ensure that the children work at appropriate height desks with appropriate posture, and adequate working space is available. Children are encouraged to use their spare hand to prevent work from moving. The use of a comfortable and efficient grip is taught to children who would benefit from one. Handwriting is taught through a variety of methods as outlined in the National Literacy Strategy. Handwriting is taught every day in throughout the school using letters and sounds. Initially, letter formation will be taught alongside the teaching of the letters of the alphabet in the reception class, using a multi-sensory approach. Letters taught in families further support the correct letter formation, as they are based on a similar movement. From the end of Reception onwards handwriting and letter formation are taught using letters and sounds phonic sessions. In order to develop a legible style, children at Key Stage 1 are taught: How to hold a pencil To write from left to right and top to bottom of the page To start and finish letters correctly To form letters of regular size and shape To put regular spaces between letters and words How to form lower and upper case letters To join phonemes and diagraphs within words. At Key stage 2 this work is continued plus all the children are taught to: Write legibly in both joined and printed styles with increasing fluency and speed

4 At the beginning of Y3 pupils will use joined handwriting using Cripps, until a neat cursive script forming letters from the line, pupils will choose when and if they use loops. At both Key Stages, the importance of clear and neat presentation in order to communicate their meaning efectively, is emphasised. Children are to use a line to cross out mistakes, the use of erasers is discouraged. The school uses pastel coloured, unlined paper with guidelines or lined paper/specially ruled paper. Writing Implements At Key Stage 1, the children use a pencil for all their written work. Year 4 This is the transition year from pencil to pen. Each child is assessed individually by the class teacher who determines the appropriate time for moving on to a pen. The child is presented with a special certificate in achievement assembly for each stage of progression, fat to thin pencil, triangular to round, pencil to pen. Support of Left Handed Pupils The teacher supports left handed pupils by - Encouraging the child to place the paper/book to their left side so that they can see what they have already written; - Allowing the child, wherever possible, to use a slightly higher chair than usual so they can see over their hand; - Encouraging the child not to hold the pencil too near to the point; Assessment - Children need to be supported and encouraged to develop a neat and legible handwriting style. This may need a sensitive approach by the teacher to ensure motivation and progress, by the use of stickers, certificates and magic things. - Teachers are to use Marking Policy. - Personal literacy targets with a specific handwriting focus will be used. Marking See Marking policy See Writing policy

5 SEN and Equal Opportunities Our policy is monitored and reviewed to ensure that all pupils have equality of access to a range of writing opportunities and that all pupils achieve to the best of their potential regardless of gender, race or culture. Children who experience great difficulties with handwriting are referred to the SENco by the class teacher. These children will follow a structured handwriting programme tailored to their own particular needs. Monitoring and Evaluation The standards of teaching and learning in handwriting are regularly monitored and reviewed. The head teacher observes Literacy lessons throughout the school, using literacy monitoring forms. Feedback is given to the individual staff. Evidence gathered is used to form an action plan, which teachers will subsequently implement.

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