What I received: Perfect Reading & Beautiful Handwriting Bundle – eBook (218 pages). You can also purchase on the print or a print and ebook bundle as well.
This is a unique program that not only teaches your child how to read but also how to write in beautiful italic handwriting. It includes a total of 60 step-by-step phonic lessons that can be used as a primary or supplementary teaching tool. The handwriting portion can be used by both children and adults who want to improve their handwriting.
How did we go?
I learned a little of calligraphy while I was at school, but have been unable to get our boys interested in any type of handwriting at all. They are able to write, not very neatly, as they tend to hurry through to get what they need to write down as quickly as possible. I am hoping with a little bit of slowing down and practice, they too, can learn to write quickly, but still have very neat and legible handwriting.
At the start of the book, there is a list of four ways in which this book can be used:
- To teach young children how to read and write
- To teach children with reading difficulties to read effectively
- To teach children to have fast, legible, attractive handwriting
- To teach yourself beautiful handwriting
Both of our boys can read quite well, reading numerous books per week. They’re read most of the books in our little country library, so I decided we would use this program to concentrate more on#3 above, though after using it with the boys, I know think I might have a go at it myself to brush up on the skills I haven’t used for years.
We did start at the beginning of the book, the phonics section. Not because they need to learn their phonics, though it was good for them to review this, but to learn and practice on slowing down and spending some time learning this new style of writing. As it is so different to the handwriting the boys have learnt it did take them some time to get the hang of writing this way.
They started with practicing the letters of the alphabet. They repeated this a few times, over a few days in an additional exercise book. Then they moved onto the short vowel sounds. There was a page of words that contained the short a sound which our boys copied multiple times in an exercise book before moving back to the Perfect Reading, Beautiful Handwriting ebook to copy sentences that included these words. Then they moved onto words with the short e sounds.
One thing our boys did struggle with was the lowercase letter ‘e’. They thought it was strange to write it with 2 strokes instead of the one they had been using. This seems to be one of the harder things to change for them. They still alternate between writing it with one and two strokes, but are getting better with this.
After completing all the phonics pages, they will move onto the ‘proper’ handwriting practice pages. They will review the whole alphabet before moving onto copying a small section of the poem, ‘The Night Before Christmas’. The first word of each line is traceable which will help them with getting the correct sizing and spacing for each line.
This is then followed by writing while slanting the letters. The rest of the poem was completed in this slanting style. There are guidelines to help children maintain consistency with the slant. Again, the first word was traceable as before.
As the book continues, there are pages that teach how to join the letters correctly as well as pages that teach how to write with an edged pen. These are the pages I would love to have a go at myself with a proper calligraphy pen.
Overall, I think this is a great reading, writing, spelling and handwriting program. It is intended to teach your child/ren to read and write in 60 days and I would have loved to have had this from the start for our boys. It has been a slow progress for our boys as they are trying to change to a completely new style of writing, but you can slowly start to see the progress they are making. We are definitely going to continue using this program in the future.
Even if you don’t have a child learning to read like me, I believe the Perfect Reading, Beautiful Handwriting still makes a wonderful tool for learning the italic style of handwriting.