Handwriting at Shilbottle Primary


Children achieve a neat, legible style with correctly formed letters in cursive handwriting.
Children develop fluency and speed.
Children recognise that handwriting is a form of communication and as such should be considered important
To promote confidence and self-esteem
To encourage children to take pride in their work
To display neatly presented work around the school as a model of excellence for others to  aspire to



Equal opportunities are provided for all pupils to achieve success in handwriting
Handwriting is taught regularly and systematically in classes, groups or individually as appropriate.
Patterns are used initially, by writing with a variety of tools and using multi-sensory methods, to help free flowing hand motions.
Correct pencil hold and letter (and number) formation are taught from the beginning and handwriting is frequently linked with spelling.
When marking or writing comments, members of staff use cursive handwriting as appropriate.
Displayed writing throughout the school includes cursive writing and computer generated writing.


Provision for left handed children:

Each left-handed child is identified and monitored by the class teacher to ensure success. Left-handed children sit on the left side of right-handed children, so their elbows don’t bump. They are encouraged to find a comfortable orientation for their paper, usually slightly to the left of centre of their body, and to have their fingers about 1.5 cm from the point of their pencil.

Resources and Writing Materials

Children are given experience of a variety of writing tools.
Handwriting pens are used in Year 3 and 4 after children have gained their ‘Pen Licence’.
Handwriting books with pairs of lines are used to help to achieve appropriate height and even formation of letters.
Guidelines are also used with plain paper when redrafting where appropriate


Special Educational Needs:

Children are identified early and provision is made for extra support.  Activities to develop 'gross motor skills' are widely used.

Older children needing additional support are given short bursts of handwriting practice, one -to-one with a teacher. Children will be provided with pencils with plastic pencil grips where appropriate and may be encouraged to write on a slight slope.


How handwriting is taught throughout the school

Foundation Stage:

In the Foundation Stage children take part in activities to develop gross and fine motor skills and recognition of patterns. Individual letter formation is taught, modelled and practised in working towards the objectives listed below at Key Stage 1.  Children are taught the letter formation in the school’s ‘handwriting alphabet’.  Copies of the school’s alphabet are displayed in every classroom and are available for parents. Children are taught good posture and pencil hold.


Key Stage 1:

The children are taught how to form both lower case and capital letters and how to join them, whilst still developing fine and gross motor skills with a range of multi-sensory activities Handwriting is taught regularly and in conjunction with the introduction of phonic skills.

The children are taught to:

Write from left to right and from top to bottom.
Start and finish letters correctly.
Be consistent with the size and shape of letters and the spacing of letters and words.
Have the correct pencil grip.
Find a convenient position for their page.
Have the correct posture and position.


Key Stage 2:

During this stage the children continue to have direct teaching and regular practice of handwriting. We aim for them to develop a clear and fluent style and by the end of Year 4, be able to adapt their handwriting for the following different purposes:

A neat legible hand for finished, presented work.
A faster script for notes.
Print for labelling maps or diagrams.