Pedagogue Blog

21 Hacks for Teaching Kids to Use Subject-Verb Agreement While Writing

Are you looking for hacks for teaching students to use subject-verb agreement while writing? If so, keep reading.

1. After checking the student’s written work, make sure they make all appropriate corrections in subject-verb agreement.

2. Assess the type of grammatical model that the student is exposed to at home. Without placing negative connotations on their parents’ grammatical style, explain the difference between standard and nonstandard grammar.

3. Correct the student every time they use subject-verb agreement incorrectly when speaking.

4. Get the student to make up sentences with given verbs and subjects.

5. Explain that specific forms of verbs go with specific subjects and that correct subject-verb agreement requires an appropriate match of subject and verb. Teach the student several possibilities of subject-verb agreement and how to choose the correct one.

6. Provide the student a choice of answers (e.g., more than one possible answer, multiple-choice items on a worksheet, etc.) to facilitate their capacity and ability to recognize the correct answer.

7. Get the student to pick out the correct verb when given choices on “fill-in-the-blank” worksheets.

8. Give the student an app or a hand-held educational device that gives practice and reinforcement in subject-verb agreement.

9. Provide the student a sequence of sentences with both incorrect and correct usage of verbs and ask the student to find which are correct and incorrect.

10. Get the student to find examples of correct subject-verb agreement in their favorite books or magazines.

11. Provide the student a sequence of sentences, both written and oral, and have them find which ones are grammatically correct and incorrect.

12. Get the student to practice correct subject-verb agreement by providing the student with several sentences with errors on the smartboard or overhead projector. The student is then expected to correct the subject-verb errors and discuss them with the teacher.

13. Converse with the student to explain that they are using unacceptable subject-verb agreement and emphasize the importance of writing grammatically correct sentences.

14. Get the student to read the written work of peers in which subject-verb agreement is used correctly.

15. Spotlight subject-verb agreements in the student’s reading to call attention to appropriate combinations.

16. Get the student to write sentences with given verbs and subjects.

17. Play Concentration to match subject-verb agreement.

18. Get the student to help correct other students’ written work by checking the subject-verb agreement and correcting the task.

19. Find the most common errors the student makes in subject-verb agreement. Get the student to spend time each day writing one or more of these subject-verb combinations in correct form.

20. Create a list of the correct forms of subjects and verbs the student has difficulty writing correctly. Get the student to keep the list at their desk for a reference when writing.

21. 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 Learners Develop Writing Skills

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

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

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

15 Ways to Teach Learners to Use Punctuation

Are you looking for ways to teach students to use punctuation? If so, keep reading.

1. Get the student to practice using one form of punctuation at a time before going on to another (e.g., period, question mark, etc.).

2. Spotlight punctuation in passages from the student’s reading task. Get the student to explain why each form of punctuation is used.

3. Do not require the student to learn more information than they are capable of learning at any time.

4. Utilize a newspaper to locate various types of punctuation. Get the student to circle periods in red, commas in blue, etc.

5. Make the student proofread all written work for correct punctuation. Praise the student for each correction they make in punctuation.

6. Use appropriate punctuation through charts and overheads for student reference during all creative writing learning activities .

7. Give practice with punctuation using a computer program or hand-held educational device that gives the student instant feedback.

8. Give the student the appropriate learning materials to finish the task (e.g., pencil with eraser, paper, dictionary, handwriting sample, etc.). Make sure that the student has only the appropriate learning materials on the desk.

9. Create a notebook for punctuation rules to be used to help with proofreading work.

10. Acknowledge quality work (e.g., display student’s work, congratulate the student, etc.).

11. Minimize the emphasis on competition. Competitive learning activities may cause the student to hurry and make errors in punctuation.

12. Give the student a list of examples of the forms of punctuation they are expected to use (e.g., periods, commas, question marks, exclamation points, etc.). The student keeps the examples at their desk and refers to them when writing.

13. Teach the student punctuation at each level before introducing a new skill level.

14. Praise the student for using correct punctuation when writing: (a) give the student a concrete reward (e.g., classroom privileges, line leading, 10 minutes of free time, etc.) or (b) give the student an informal reward (e.g., praise, handshake, smile, etc.).

21. 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 Learners Develop Writing Skills

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

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

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

16 Strategies for Teaching Learners to Use Punctuation

Are you looking for strategies for teaching students to use punctuation? If so, keep reading.

1. After checking the student’s work, require them to make all appropriate corrections in punctuation.

2. Inspect the student’s work at several points throughout a task to make sure the student is using punctuation when appropriate.

3. Display a chart of punctuation rules in front of the classroom.

4. Provide the student a list of sentences in which the punctuation has been omitted. Get the student to supply the correct punctuation with colored pencils.

5. Examine with the student common punctuation rules before starting a creative writing learning experience.

6. Provide the student a sequence of sentences representing all the punctuation rules. Get the student to find the rules for each punctuation. Remove each sentence from the task when the student can explain the rules for punctuation in the sentence.

7. Give the student apps that gives practice and reinforcement in punctuating sentences and other creative writing tasks (e.g., addresses, letters, etc.).

8. Provide the student sentences requiring them to fill in specific punctuation they are learning to use (e.g., periods, commas, question marks, etc.).

9. Make sure the student receives instruction in the rules of punctuation (e.g., periods belong at the end of sentences, question marks are used when a question is asked, etc.).

10. Get the student to take part in writing learning activities that should cause them to do as well as possible on punctuation and other writing skills (e.g., writing letters to a friend, rock star, famous athlete, etc.).

11. Teach the student what all punctuation marks look like and their uses.

12. Get the student to keep a list of basic rules of punctuation at their desk to use as a reference when writing (e.g., use a period at the end of a sentence, etc.).

13. Provide the student a set of three cards: one with a period, one with a question mark, and one with an exclamation point. As you read a sentence to the student, have them hold up the appropriate punctuation card.

14. Get the student to practice correct punctuation on the smartboard by providing the student with several sentences with errors. The student is then expected to correct the punctuation errors and discuss them with the teacher.

15. Draft an agreement with the student stipulating what behavior is required (e.g., using punctuation correctly) and which reinforcement will be implemented when the agreement has been met.

16. 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 Learners Develop Writing Skills

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

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

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

14 Ways to Support Learners Who Cannot Write Within a Given Space

Are you looking for ways to support students who cannot write within a given space? If so, keep reading.

1. Give the student physical encouragement by guiding their hand as they write.

2. Get the student to correct their own writing errors.

3. Get the student to perform a “practice page” before turning in the actual task.

4. Get the student to practice writing letters, words, and sentences by tracing over a sequence of dots.

5. Give the student extra-large sheets of paper on which to write. As the student shows success, slowly lessen the size of the paper to standard size.

6. Acknowledge quality work (e.g., display student’s work, congratulate the student, etc.).

7. Give the student the appropriate learning materials to finish the task (e.g., pencil with eraser, paper, dictionary, handwriting sample, etc.). Make sure that the student has only the appropriate learning materials on the desk.

8. Utilize vertical lines or graph paper to help the student space letters correctly.

9. Create a border, so the student understands when they have written to the edge of the writing space.

10. 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.

11. Give the student shorter writing tasks. As the student shows success, slowly increase the number of writing tasks over time.

12. Provide the student with one handwriting task to finish at a time. Present the next task only when the student has successfully finished the prior task.

13. Get the student to take part in writing learning activities designed to cause the student to want to be successful in writing (e.g., writing a letter to a friend, rock star, famous athlete, etc.).

14. 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 Learners Develop Writing Skills

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

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

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

15 Strategies to Help Learners Who Cannot Write within a Given Space

Are you looking for strategies to help students who cannot write within a given space? If so, keep reading.

1. Get the student’s vision reviewed if it has not been recently reviewed.

2. Inspect the student’s work at several points throughout the task to make sure that the student is writing within a given space.

3. Inspect the student’s paper position. A right-handed person writing in cursive should tilt the paper to the left, so the lower left-hand comer points toward the person’s midsection, and as the writing progresses, the paper should shift, not the writing arm.

4. Inspect the student’s pencil grasp. The pencil should be held between the thumb and first two fingers, holding the instrument one inch from its tip.

5. Make sure the student is shifting their paper as the writing progresses.

6. Draw a margin on the right side of the student’s paper as a reminder for them to write within a given space.

7. Put a ruler or construction paper on the baseline, making sure the student touches the line for each letter.

8. Utilize a ruled paper with a midline, explaining to the student that minimum letters (a, b, c, d, e, g, h, etc.) touch the midline.

9. Spotlight lines on the paper for the student to use as encouragement.

10. Praise the student for each word or letter correctly spaced.

11. Get the student to look at correctly written content to serve as a model for them to mimic.

12. Darken the lines on the paper so the student can more easily use them to write within the given space.

13. Let the student draw their own lines on paper for writing learning activities .

14. Let the student use a ruler as a guide or “bottom line.”

15. 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 Learners Develop Writing Skills

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

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

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

13 Ways to Help Kids Who Reverse Letters and Numbers While Writing

Are you looking for ways to help kids who reverse letters and numbers while writing? If so, keep reading.

1. Get the student to keep a card with the word bed at their desk to help remember the correct form of b and d in a word they understand.

2. Get the student to keep a list of the most commonly used words that contain letters they reverse. This list can be used as a reference when the student is writing.

3. After identifying those letters and numbers the student reverses, have them highlight or underline those letters and numbers found in a magazine, newspaper, etc.

4. Spotlight the subtle differences between letters and numbers that the student reverses. Get the student to scan five typewritten lines containing only the letters or numbers that are confusing. Get the student to circle the “n’s and the “h’s with various colors.

5. Cursive handwriting may prevent reversals and may be used by some students as an alternative to manuscript.

6. Acknowledge quality work (e.g., display the student’s work, congratulate the student, etc.).

7. Give the student a number line and alphabet strip on their desk to use as a reference to make the correct forms of letters and numbers.

8. Minimize the emphasis on competition. Competitive learning activities may cause the student to hurry and reverse numbers and letters when writing.

9. Get the student to take part in writing learning activities designed to cause the student to want to be successful in writing (e.g., writing a letter to a friend, rock star, famous athlete, etc.).

10. Praise the student for making letters and numbers correctly when writing: (a) give the student 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 student an informal reward (e.g., smile, handshake, praise, etc.).

11. Get the student to practice writing letters, words, and sentences by tracing over a sequence of dots.

12. Make the student proofread all written work. Praise the student for each correction made.

13. 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 Learners Develop Writing Skills

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

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

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

14 Strategies to Help Learners Who Reverse Letters and Numbers While Writing

Are you looking for strategies to help students who reverse letters and numbers while writing? If so, keep reading.

1. Get the student’s vision reviewed if it has not been recently reviewed.

2. Utilize board learning activities (e.g., drawing lines, circles, etc.) to teach the student proper directionality for each letter or number.

3. Guide the student’s hand, providing the feeling of directionality.

4. Put letters on transparencies and project them on the smartboard or paper. Get the student to trace the letters.

5. Get the student to trace letters and numbers in magazines, newspapers, etc., that they typically reverse when writing.

6. On occasions where correcting papers with reversed letters, use direction arrows to remind the student of correct directionality.

7. Find the letters and numbers the student reverses and have them practice making one or more of the letters correctly each day.

8. Teach the student to recognize the correct form of the letters and numbers when they see them (e.g., b, d, 2, 5, etc.).

9. Teach the student to check all work for those letters and numbers they typically reverse. Praise the student for correcting any reversed letters and numbers.

10. Give the student visual signals to aid in making letters and numbers (e.g., arrows indicating strokes).

11. Give the student large letters and numbers to trace that they typically reverse.

12. Make sure that the student’s formation of letters is appropriate and continuously correct.

13. Provided with letters and numbers on separate cards, have the student match the letters and numbers that are the same.

14. 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 Learners Develop Writing Skills

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

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

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

23 Strategies to Help Learners Who Cannot Use Correct Spacing between Words or Sentences While Writing

Are you looking for strategies to help students who cannot use correct spacing between words or sentences while reading? If so, keep reading.

1. Get the student’s vision reviewed if it has not been recently reviewed.

2. Get the student to sit in a properly sized chair with feet touching the floor, their back pressed against the back of the chair, shoulders slightly inclined, arms resting on the desk, and elbows just off the lower edge of the desk.

3. Inspect the student’s paper position. A right-handed person writing in cursive should tilt the paper to the left, so the lower left-hand comer points toward the person’s midsection, and as the writing progresses, the paper should shift, not the writing arm.

4. Put dots between letters and have the student use fingers as a spacer between words.

5. Make sure the student is shifting their paper when writing.

6. Using appropriate spacing, print or write words or sentences. Get the student to trace what was written.

7. Minimize the emphasis on competition. Competitive learning activities may cause the student to hurry and fail to use correct spacing when writing words and sentences.

8. Give the student samples of handwritten words and sentences they can use as a reference for correct spacing.

9. Get the student to leave a finger space between each word they write.

10. Draw vertical lines for the student to use to space letters and words.

11. Give the student the appropriate learning materials to finish the task (e.g., pencil with eraser, paper, dictionary, handwriting sample, etc.). Make sure that the student has only appropriate learning materials on their desk.

12. Teach the student to always look at the next word to ascertain if there is enough space before the margin.

13. Give the student graph paper, instructing them to write letters in each block, while skipping a block between words and sentences.

14. Acknowledge quality work (e.g., display student’s work, congratulate the student, etc.).

15. Inspect the student’s work at several points throughout a task to make sure the student is using appropriate spacing.

16. Provide the student with one handwriting task to finish at a time. Present the next task only when the student has successfully finished the prior task.

17. Designate the student with fewer tasks. As the student shows success, slowly increase the number of tasks over time.

18. Get the student to practice writing letters, words, and sentences by tracing over a sequence of dots.

19. Utilize vertical lines or graph paper to help the student space letters correctly.

20. Get the student to take part in writing learning activities designed to cause the student to want to be successful in writing (e.g., writing a letter to a friend, rock star, famous athlete, etc.).

21. Get the student to look at correctly spaced written content to serve as a model.

22. Praise the student for each word and/or sentence that is properly spaced: (a) give the student a concrete reward (e.g., classroom privileges, line leading, 10 minutes of free time, etc.) or (b) give the student an informal reward (e.g., praise, handshake, smile, etc.).

23. Get the student to perform a “practice page” before turning in the actual task.

24. 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 Learners Develop Writing Skills

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

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

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

15 Ways to Teach Learners to Use Capital Letters

Are you looking for ways to teach students to use capital letters? If so, keep reading.

1. Teach the student how to form all the capital letters of the alphabet.

2. Make sure the student proofreads their work for correct capitalization. Praise the student for each correction made in capitalization.

3. Examine with the student common capitalization rules before starting a creative writing learning experience.

4. Make sure the student receives instruction in the rules of capitalization (e.g., the first word of a sentence, the pronoun I, proper names, cities, states, streets, months, days of the week, dates, holidays, titles of movies, books, newspapers, magazines, etc.).

5. Teach appropriate capitalization of sentences when assigning creative writing learning activities. This could be done on the smartboard, an overhead projector, or in chart form.

6. Praise the student for capitalizing correctly: ( a) give the student a concrete reward (e.g., classroom privileges, line leading, 10 minutes of free time, etc.) or (b) give the student an informal reward (e.g., praise, handshake, smile, etc.).

7. Draft an agreement with the student stipulating what behavior is required (e.g., using capitalization correctly) and which reinforcement will be implemented when the agreement has been met.

8. Give practice with capitalization using an app or a hand-held educational device that gives the student instant feedback.

9. Give the student the appropriate learning materials to finish the task (e.g., pencil with eraser, paper, dictionary, handwriting sample, etc.). Make sure that the student has only the appropriate learning materials on the desk.

10. Give the student a list of examples of capitalization (e.g., proper names, cities, streets, holidays, etc.) that the student keeps at their desk to refer to when writing.

11. Minimize the emphasis on competition. Competitive learning activities may cause the student to hurry and make mistakes in capitalization.

12. Give the student apps that gives practice and reinforcement in capitalizing words.

13. Identify quality work (e.g., display student’s work, congratulate the student, etc.).

14. Give the student lists of words and have them indicate which ones should be capitalized (e.g., water, New York, Mississippi, etc.).

15. 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 Learners Develop Writing Skills

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

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

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

15 Strategies to Help Learners Who Use Capitalization Incorrectly While Writing

Are you looking for strategies to help students who use capitalization incorrectly while reading? If so, keep reading.

1. After checking the student’s work, require them to make all appropriate corrections in capitalization.

2. Inspect the student’s work at several points throughout a task to make sure the student is capitalizing where needed.

3. Display a capitalization rules chart in the front of the classroom.

4. Place emphasis on one rule of capitalization until the student masters that rule, then move on to another rule (e.g., proper names, cities, states, streets, etc.).

5. Find names, cities, states, etc., on a newspaper page and underline them.

6. Provide the student a sequence of sentences representing all the capitalization rules. Get the student to find the rules for each capitalization. Remove each sentence from the task when the student can explain the rules for the capitalization in the sentence.

7. Get the student to take part in writing learning activities that should cause them to do as well as possible in capitalization and other writing skills (e.g., writing letters to a friend, rock star, famous athlete, etc.).

8. Get the student to practice writing words that are always capitalized (e.g., countries, bodies of water, nationalities, languages, capitols, days of the week, months of the year, etc.).

9. Spotlight all the capitalized letters in a passage or paragraph and have the student explain why each is capitalized.

10. Create a notebook of rules for capitalization to be used to proofread work.

11. Give the student a list of rules for capitalization at their desk to use as a reference.

12. Teach the student capitalization at each level before introducing a new skill level.

13. Get the student to practice correct capitalization by providing the student with several sentences with errors on the smartboard or overhead projector. The student is then expected to correct the capitalization errors and discuss them with the teacher.

14. Do not require the student to learn more information than they are capable of learning at any time.

15. 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 Learners Develop Writing Skills

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

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

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

27 Hacks to Help Learners Learn to Improve Their Content Copying Skills

Are you looking for strategies to help students learn to improve their content copying skills? If so, keep reading.

1. Make sure that the content to be copied has a sharp contrast with the background/foreground to maximize visibility (e.g., black on white projections, white chalk on a green smartboard, etc.).

2. Utilize an overhead projector to enlarge the content to be copied.

3. Get the student to proofread all their work before submitting it.

4. If the student wears glasses, urge them to wear them if needed while working.

5. Give the student a number line and alphabet strip on their desk to use as a reference for the correct form of letters and numbers to reduce errors.

6. Make sure there is no glare on the content to be copied from a distance.

7. Teach the student that work not done accurately must be redone, corrected, etc., during their recreation time.

8. Make sure the student’s desk is free of all content except that from which they are copying.

9. Make sure the student has all the learning materials appropriate prior to beginning a task to lessen unnecessary distractions while copying.

10. Pair the student’s tasks with their learning experience level. On occasions where the student is feeling highly active, assign tasks that require a great level of movement. On occasions where the student is most likely to keep attention, assign more sedentary tasks (e.g., copying from a textbook, smartboard, etc.).

11. Give an incentive statement along with an instruction (e.g., “On occasions where you have copied the work correctly, you can work on the computer.”).

12. Give more hands-on learning activities instead of copying learning materials from books.

13. Alter the content from which the student is to copy (e.g., lessen the amount of content to be copied, enlarge the print, etc.).

14. Establish time at the end of each class period for the student to complete unfinished tasks.

15. Utilize a frame or window to cover all content except what the student is to copy.

16. Give the student the content to be copied at their desk if they are unable to copy it from a distance.

17. Teach the student the relationship between unacceptable behavior and the consequences that follow (e.g., failing to copy the instructions will result in homework tasks being done incorrectly).

18. Acknowledge quality work (e.g., display student’s work, congratulate the student, etc.).

19. Minimize distracting stimuli (e.g., noise and motion in the classroom) to enable the student’s capacity and ability to copy letters, words, sentences, and numbers from a model.

20. Minimize the emphasis on competition. Competitive learning activities may cause the student to hurry and be careless when copying.

21. Get the student to use the word processor on the computer as an alternative to using a pencil and paper.

22. Utilize the computer and monitor as an alternative writing tool.

23. Make the student proofread all written work. Praise the student for each correction made.

24. Place the student closer to the content being copied.

25. Make the student finish a task again if it has been done incorrectly due to their hurrying just to get things done.

26. Give the student a private space to work (e.g., study carrel, private “office,” etc.). This is used to lessen distracting stimuli, not as a form of punishment.

27. 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 Learners Develop Writing Skills

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

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

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

21 Ways to Teach Learners to Copy Content

Are you looking for ways to teach students to copy content? If so, keep reading.

1. Select a peer to assist the student in copying the content (e.g., read the content aloud as the student copies it, copy the content for the student, etc.).

2. Get the student to ask for help when they need it.

3. Give the student the appropriate learning materials to finish tasks (e.g., pencil with eraser, paper, dictionary, handwriting sample, etc.). Make sure that the student has only the appropriate learning materials on the desk.

4. Provide a consistent format from which the student copies.

5. Get the student to read their written work out loud when proofing.

6. Create an environmental setting for the classroom that promotes optimal individual performance (e.g., quiet room, background music, fresh air, etc.).

7. Get the student to question any directions, explanations, or instructions they do not understand.

8. Put the content from which the student is to copy at a distance to him/her. As the student shows success, slowly move the content closer to the student.

9. Get the student to work on the task at another time (e.g., later in the day, during lunch, etc.) when they should be able to concentrate better.

10. Praise the student for copying letters, words, sentences, and numbers from a model at a close proximity: (a) give the student 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 student an informal reward (e.g., praise, handshake, smile, etc.).

11. Assist the student in completing writing tasks so they will not have to hurry.

12. Spotlight the content the student is to copy.

13. Widen the print from which the student is copying.

14. Select a peer to proofread all the student’s work before it is submitted.

15. Find any particular letters or numbers the student has difficulty copying and have them practice copying those letters or numbers.

16. Get the student’s vision reviewed if it has not been recently reviewed.

17. Boost supervision (e.g., by teacher, peer, paraprofessional, etc.) of the student while they are performing tasks that require copying.

18. Train the student to list five attributes of a peer who produces neat work. Get them to select one of those attributes to work on each week for five weeks.

19. Get the student to practice writing letters, words, and sentences by tracing over a sequence of dots.

20. Provide consistent expectations for the student to finish a task neatly and accurately.

21. 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 Learners Develop Writing Skills

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

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

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

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