Denby Free CE Aided Primary School Handwriting Policy

Denby Free CE Aided Primary School
Handwriting Policy
Our Mission Statement:
The Staff and Governors at Denby Free School undertake a commitment to the pupils and parents
to offer equal access to a wide, balanced education within a secure and safe environment, based
on a Christian foundation.
This policy statement shall be reviewed and agreed on a regular basis by the full Governing Body.
“Handwriting is a tool that has to work. It must be comfortable, fast and legible.”
Angela Webb, Chair, National Handwriting Association
As a school our aims in teaching handwriting are that the pupils will:
Learn the conventional ways of forming letter shapes, both lower case and capitals.
Understand the importance of clear presentation in order to communicate meaning.
Take pride in the presentation of work, developing handwriting with a sense of enjoyment and
Be supported in developing correct spelling quickly through a multi-sensory approach to
Be able to write quickly to aid expressing themselves creatively and imaginatively across the
curriculum and for a range of purposes.
Use their skills with confidence in real life situations.
Develop a fluent, comfortable, legible, joined handwriting style.
Knowledge, Skills and Understanding In Foundation Stage
Develop gross motor control.
Develop fine motor control.
Use large equipment to make marks e.g. big chalks, large paint brushes, shaving foam, finger
painting etc.
Use a range of mark making tools such as pencils, pens and crayons, etc with confidence and
Develop a recognition of pattern.
Develop a language to talk about shapes and movements.
The main handwriting movements involved in write dance and Physical Literacy
When the children have developed appropriate gross and fine motor control, they will be
gradually introduced to letter formation and encouraged to learn:
How to write their first name, using a capital letter for the beginning and correct letter formation.
Learn letter formation alongside
Use a pencil, and hold it effectively to form recognisable letters [’flicks’], most of which are
correctly formed.
Receive instant feedback when errors in pencil grip or formation are seen.
Lines can be widely spaced (15mm). It may help children to leave a blank line between each line
of writing initially to avoid ascenders and descenders overlapping.
Formation practice will also occur without the restriction of lines, including the use of
whiteboards, sand trays etc.
At Year One the majority of children will:
Be taught letter formation in the following order:
c o a d g q (anti-clockwise round).
r n m h b p (down and retrace upwards).
i l u t y j (down and off in another direction).
v w x z (zig zag letters).
e f s k (odd letters).
Write most letters, correctly formed and orientated, using a comfortable and efficient pencil grip.
Write with spaces between words accurately.
Develop speed and stamina.
At Year Two the majority of children will:
Write legibly, using upper and lower-case letters appropriately and correct spacing within and
between words.
Form ascenders and descenders consistently and correctly.
Practise writing at speed.
Form and use the four basic handwriting joins.
At Year Three the majority of children will:
Develop joined handwriting.
Further develop writing speed and stamina.
Produce writing which sits on the line most of the time.
At Year Four the majority of children will write with:
Joined handwriting the majority of the time.
Ascenders and descenders in the correct place and on the lines.
Automaticity (ie not having to think about formation).
At Year Five and Six the majority of children will write with:
Consistent size and letter spacing.
A cursive, legible, accurate style.
Competency at a steady dictation speed.
Guidelines for good handwriting
Modelling handwriting : All teachers, teaching assistants and trainee teachers should be familiar
with the contents of this policy thereby ensuring that the handwriting modelled to the children is in
line with the style adopted throughout the school. Examples of correct letter formation should be
displayed in classrooms for children to refer to.
The learning environment
The learning environment should be conducive to good writing by:
ensuring the tables and chairs are the correct size
there is adequate space
there is good lighting
the atmosphere is calm and purposeful
the materials are accessible, suitable, varied and of good quality.
all classes will display models of handwriting
Position of the writer
Children should sit comfortably with their feet flat on the floor and their body upright, leaning
forward slightly. The non-writing hand should rest on the paper, supporting the upper body, facing
slightly to the dominant side. The eyes should be approximately 30-40 centimetres away from the
paper. If copying from the whiteboard children should be facing it.
Left Handed Children
Each left-handed child is identified and closely monitored by the class teacher to ensure success.
The following guidelines are useful to help left-handed children:
The writing surface and chair are suitable for the child's own height.
The child sits towards the left of their partner leaving plenty of space for writing on the left side of
his/her – mid line (this allows maximum space for arm movement).
The writing paper is to the left of the child's body midline.
The paper is tilted up to 32 degrees in a clockwise direction.
A writing tool which moves smoothly across the paper is used.
The paper is supported with the right hand.
The writing forearm is parallel with the paper edge as the child writes.
The writing tool is held sufficiently far from its point to ensure that the child can see what he/she
is writing.
When teaching the children to grip, care should be taken that the children do not grip the pencil
too tightly as they will tire easily and not develop a free flowing movement. They should hold the
pencil between the thumb and the forefinger with the pencil resting on the third finger. The thumb
and forefinger should be able to move slightly so that the very fine movements required for writing
are possible. Pencil grip is of paramount importance as it is very hard to undo once established.
Assessment and recording
Teachers assess handwriting when assessing writing. Teachers aim to ensure that when marking
written work, comments about neatness are kept in proportion in relation to those about content
and/or meaning.
When emulating the handwriting script using a typed font. Key Stage two use the font entitled:
Lucida Handwriting. Key Stage One font to be confirmed
Lucida calligraphy - abcdefghijklmnopqrstuvwxyz
Equal Opportunities
We ensure that each individual child receives an equal learning experience regardless of ability,
culture and gender. We are committed to equal opportunities for all irrespective of race, gender,
sexuality, disability or religion. We will monitor the impact of this policy to ensure that no group is
adversely affected.
Policy reviewed by Staff: September 2014.
Review after one year (new policy), then every 3 years
Next Review : June 2017