23 Hacks to Help Students Improve Their Handwriting

Are you looking for hacks to help students improve their handwriting? If so, keep reading.

1. Utilize adhesive content (e.g., tape, rubber cement, etc.) to keep paper positioned properly for handwriting.

2. Utilize a pencil grip (e.g., three-sided foam rubber, etc.) to give the learner assistance in appropriate positioning of the pencil or pen.

3. Utilize handwriting models with arrows that indicate the direction in which the learner should correctly form the letters.

4. Give older students with functional handwriting chances (e.g., job application forms, reinforcer surveys, order forms, checks to write, etc.).

5. Make sure that all educators who work with the learner keep consistent expectations of handwriting quality.

6. Make sure the learner has a number line and alphabet strip on their desk to use as a reference for the correct formation of letters and numbers to reduce errors.

7. Make sure the learner knows that work not done neatly must be redone.

8. Give the learner shorter tasks, but more of them throughout the day (e.g., four tasks of five problems each rather than one task of 20 problems).

9. Minimize the emphasis on competition. Competitive learning activities may cause the learner to rush and perform work in a careless manner.

10. Tasks not finished according to teacher instructions and expectations must be finished during leisure or break time.

11. Get the learner to record the number of times their handwriting is acceptable during a given week.

12. Utilize a pencil grip or various-sized pencil to assist the learner with fine motor skills to produce acceptable handwriting.

13. Inspect the learner’s grip on the pencil to make sure that they are holding the pencil correctly.

14. Designate a peer to model acceptable work for the learner to mimic.

15. Assess the appropriateness of the task to ascertain (a) if the task is too easy, (b) if the task is too complicated, and (c) if the duration of time scheduled to finish the task is sufficient.

16. Connect with the parents to disseminate information about the learner’s progress. The parents may reinforce the learner at home for improving the quality of their handwriting at school.

17. Draft an agreement with the learner stipulating what behavior is required (e.g., improving the quality of their handwriting) and which reinforcement will be implemented when the agreement has been met.

18. Praise the learner for improving the quality of handwriting based on capacity and ability. As the learner shows success, slowly increase the amount of improvement expected for reinforcement.

19. Praise those students in the classroom who turn in tasks that are legible.

20. Create classroom rules: • Complete every assignment. • Complete assignments quietly. • Remain in your seat. • Finish tasks. • Meet task expectations. Examine rules often. Praise students for following the rules.

21. Talk with the learner to explain: (a) what the learner is doing wrong (e.g., turning in work that has spelling errors or spacing errors, work that is illegible, etc.) and (b) what they must be doing (e.g., taking time to check for spelling, spacing errors, etc.).

22. Praise efforts to improve handwriting (e.g., double-checking spelling, proper positioning of letters, correct spacing, etc.): (a) give the learner a concrete reward (e.g., privileges such as leading the line, handing out learning materials, 10 minutes of free time, etc.) or (b) give the learner an informal reward (e.g., praise, handshake, smile, etc.).

23. Consider using one of the apps on one of our best writing apps lists:

The Tech Edvocate’s List of 31 Grammar & Writing Apps, Tools & Resources

Ten Apps to Help Students Develop Writing Skills

10 of the Best Grammar and Writing Apps for Elementary School Students

11 of the Best Grammar and Writing Apps for High School Students

10 of the Best Grammar and Writing Apps for Middle School Students

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