Cursive Step 4 provides 64 pages including teacher information. Practice pages provide models and practice space. The page sequence is based upon related movements and is designed for use in a daily exercise session aimed at improving control of the movements at a reduced size for adult proportion. Regular short daily exercise sessions will bring far better success than longer sessions widely spaced. Please keep in mind that the size reduction goal demands that new muscle groups learn to control the movements. We recommend that pupils use a pen for the practice exercises.
PLEASE DO NOT HAVE STUDENTS TRACE MODELS WITH A PENCIL. Making lines match blocks the fluent movement we seek to establish. The pages allow practice at a larger size and then at adult size. Improving control patterns at gross size first will help transfer good information to the fine level.
Cursive strokes are produced with lateral movements. Lateral movements are controlled by the wrist and arm. Therefore, position skills are critical for control and fluency. Chant the Action Words, Count or Colors aloud and move with the voice. The challenge to move smoothly with the vocal during exercises greatly enhances the internalization of control information.
Chant and write in the air with various muscle groups for initial gross patterning and to get the students moving with the voices. Finger-trace the movement model. Then pick up the pen to Write And Say on the practice page. The goal is to move the pencil with the voice. The voice indicates practice of the right kind of movement. Count or spell aloud to include movement in word practice. Take the strategy into spelling and vocabulary lessons to improve both handwriting and spelling.
The student who is unable to chant while writing needs help to overcome the movement problem. To move smoothly with the voice, the child must learn to look ahead to goals. The color separations in the movement models enhance that learning for letters. Exaggeration of joining control points in our models helps with word patterning. Control of fluent movement improves with rhythmic practice resulting in more accurate product. Independent practice rarely includes smooth movement as a goal. Until the patterns are well established, practice must be “directed” to include the fluency challenge.