Monday, August 30, 2010

Peterson Directed Handwriting


Format ~ E-Workbook  (also available in print form)

Cost- $19.95 per level for a parent or teacher, $29.95 per level for a school or building license. The E-workbooks are reusable, you print as needed. No need to purchase again for younger children who will need it later, use it over and over as needed for your homeschool.

We were blessed with the opportunity to try out Peterson Directed Handwriting over the past few weeks. If you have been looking for a different approach to teaching handwriting in your homeschool, Peterson Directed Handwriting just may be the answer you have been looking for. We gave the cursive program a try since my 7 year old asked recently to learn it. We started from scratch with this program, he had not tried cursive writing before.

Why is the Peterson Method different? Most handwriting programs have you show the child how to draw each letter and them practice, practice, practice on lined paper until the letters are readable. The Peterson Method starts out with the teacher demonstrating how a letter is formed by first teaching the basic strokes, you can see an example of this HERE. Then the child first practices by writing  in the air, then by using their finger to trace, and then on UN-lined paper, and eventually to lined paper.  Different sizes of lined paper are included to print out instead of the standard sized lined paper available to purchase in stores.   The whole point of teaching this way is so children will learn how to form letters correctly and fluently and not just "draw" them. They learn the movements!

If you have a digital tablet you can actually download the e-workbooks to your tablet and use it for practice! We do not own one, but other members of the homeschool crew did, so be sure to read their reviews if you are interested in using yours. Click on the link at the bottom to go to the main blog.

Kids learn to form letters guided by voice commands from the teacher. It is a very parent/teacher involved program. Kids cannot teach themselves. There is not much planning needed ahead of time for the parent though, and each lesson has gone by pretty smoothly for us, and the kids have enjoyed them.

The Peterson Method does not have your child trace letters.  Why shouldn't you have your child trace letters with a pencil or crayon? Read the answer to this on the website HERE. You can view an entire guide to teaching The Peterson Method in just 20 minutes HERE. There is SO much information available on the website, including full samples of the e-workbooks for you to review before you purchase so you know exactly what you are getting! You can view those HERE. You are not able to print from those pages, you will need to purchase the license to be able to print them.

We are using this program to learn cursive slowly, I am letting my 7 and 6 year old guide me as to their readiness for this. Both of them are already good at printing and enjoy it, so I want learning cursive to be enjoyable for them so they will continue to enjoy writing. The Peterson Method has been an enjoyable program for them so far, they even point out sharp tops and round tops in everyday objects. My 7 year old will balk when he feels overwhelmed, so not having to write out long pages of copywork for practice is appealing to him. I like this approach even though it does take a lot of my time to teach it, I feel it will be worth it later on. I plan to buy the print version for my 4 year old when she is ready to learn to print.

What I really LOVE is the value of having a license to print unlimited from the program once it is purchased. I can use the cursive program with my younger 2 kids later, and I will get double the use from the print version when I use it later on for my 1 year old.

I recommend Peterson Handwriting for Moms who do not mind being more involved in the teaching, and who would enjoy re-using the product with multiple kids.

DISCLAIMER ~ We received this product in exchange for giving a review of it as a member of The Old Schoolhouse Homeschool Crew and no other compensation was given. The opinions expressed here are my own honest thoughts after having used the product in our homeschool.

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