Handwriting Curriculum & Workbooks at HomeSchool thinkTank. Blog, Podcast, Video

Are you looking for a homeschool handwriting curriculum for your kids? Do you want to teach your children how to print or write in cursive? Perhaps your teen struggles with handwriting. Are you an adult who wants to improve your handwriting? You are in the right place if you’ve answered “Yes” to any of these questions!

In this article, you’ll discover the following information about handwriting. Click the bullet point to go straight to the handwriting resources you need!

  • Information about why handwriting is important and how to develop neat handwriting.
  • Definitions and proper spelling of handwrite, handwriting, handwritten, penmanship, print and cursive.
  • Handwriting curriculum for homeschooled kids, including Handwriting without Tears, Zaner-Bloser Workbooks, and more.
  • Handwriting practice paper for kindergarteners to teens.
  • Fun self-inking stamps that make handwriting lines.
  • Books about handwriting and workbooks to learn print and cursive writing.
  • Information about effective methods of handwriting, including the Palmer Method, D’Nealian Method, Zaner-Bloser Method, and Spencerian Method.
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HomeSchool ThinkTank Parenting Podcast: Episodes About Handwriting

Listen to these podcast episodes to help your child or teen learn how to write or improve their handwriting.

Each week, we share two episodes on the HomeSchool ThinkTank Parenting Podcast! On Mondays, we share an episode designed to inspire and uplift homeschooling parents. On Wednesdays, it’s all homeschooling, parenting, and education.

Is Handwriting Important?

In an age where children are playing with cell phones before picking up pencils, you might wonder if kids will need to be able to print or write in cursive once they become adults.

It’s disturbing that the public education system has deemed cursive so unimportant that more than half of the states no longer require cursive to be taught in public schools. The United States isn’t alone either. In many schools around the world, cursive is no longer being taught. While this number varies from year to year, the fact that the value of handwriting has ever been questioned is concerning.

With this in mind, we’ll explain why teaching handwriting to your children is important. We’ll also guide you toward neat handwriting curriculum, books, activities, information, and video tutorials.

Handwriting Ideas from an Occupational Therapist!

50+ Dollar Store Ideas to Help Your Child Improve Their Handwriting!

Reasons Handwriting Is Important

At HomeSchool ThinkTank, we believe teaching children how to write in cursive and print is important. Knowing how to write is a basic and important skill. Here are reasons to learn how to print and write cursive.

  1. Handwriting allows a person to create, take notes, and keep records without an electronic device.
  2. By understanding how to form letters, one learns how to read letters, so knowing how to print letters is helpful when learning to read.
  3. Handwriting helps develop fine motor skills.
  4. Memory recall is improved by writing.
  5. Different parts of the brain are engaged when typing, printing, and writing in cursive.
  6. By learning how to write in cursive, one can read documents printed or written in cursive.
  7. Cursive coincides with higher levels of reasoning.

Jake Weidmann is one of 12 Master Penman in the world. In his TEDx Talk, Jake Weidmann shares why handwriting matters. He states handwriting, specifically cursive writing, leads to three forms of literacy. Watch Jake’s TEDx Talk to see his creativity and beautiful handwriting.

  1. Historic Literacy
  2. Intellectual Literacy
  3. Creative Literacy
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A Brief History of Handwriting: Different Styles of Print and Cursive Handwriting

  • Spencerian Script. A detailed and ornate form of handwriting developed by Platt Rogers Spencer. The Spencerian Script was popular before the Great Depression of 1929, primarily between 1850 and 1925.
  • Palmer Method of Handwriting. Around 1888, during the second Industrial Revolution, Austin Norman Palmer developed this efficient method of writing to keep pace with the newly invented typewriter.
  • Zaner-Bloser Method of Handwriting. The Zaner-Bloser Method is a utilitarian form of handwriting commonly used in schools today. Charles Paxton Zaner founded the Zanerian College of Penmanship in 1888 and developed the Zaner-Bloser Method of Handwriting. After Charles Paxton Zaner sold shares to Elmer Ward Bloser in 1895, they merged their names to form the company Zaner-Bloser. Around this time, Zaner-Bloser began distributing instructional handwriting materials.
  • D’Nealian Method of Handwriting. School teacher Donald Neal Thurber developed the D’Nealian Method. Mr. Thurber found the transition between printing and cursive cumbersome for students. As a result, he added tails to the beginning and end of print letters and taught students to slant their letters. The purpose of the D’Nealian Method was to make the transition from printing to cursive easier for students. While the D’Nealian Method was also popular in the 1970s and ’80s, it is still used in some schools today.

Watch more videos about the history of handwriting and learn about different handwriting styles.

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Hand Writing, Hand-Writing, or Handwriting: Is the Spelling Hyphenated?

Is Hand Written one word or two words? Is it hyphenated? How do you correctly spell the word?

  • Hand Written
  • Hand-Written
  • Handwritten

How do you spell Hand Write?

  • Hand Write
  • Hand-Write
  • Handwrite

Hand-writing used to be a compound word. Over time though, handwriting has become one word. As a result, the two words are combined without a dash between them.

So whether you want to write handwrite, handwritten, or handwriting, it’s just one word.

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The Definition of Handwriting

The Merriam-Webster Dictionary defines the meaning of handwriting.

  1. Writing done by hand especially: the form of writing peculiar to a particular person.
  2. Something written by hand.

The Definition of Cursive

The Merriam-Webster Dictionary defines the meaning of cursive.

Cursive: Adjective

  1. Of writing : flowing often with the strokes of successive characters joined and the angles rounded.
  2. Having a flowing, easy, impromptu character.

Cursive: Noun

  1. A manuscript written in cursive writing. also: cursive writing.
  2. A style of printed letter resembling handwriting.
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The Definition of Print

The meaning of print as defined by the Merriam-Webster Dictionary.

For our purposes, we have only included one of many meanings the word print has.


  1. To write in letters shaped like those of ordinary Roman text type.

The Definition of Penmanship

The meaning of penmanship is defined by the Merriam-Webster Dictionary.


  1. The art or practice of writing with the pen.
  2. Quality or style of handwriting.
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Printing vs Cursive Handwriting

It’s important to teach your children both print and cursive handwriting. During the early grades, children learn how to print their upper case and lower case letters. Older students generally begin cursive lessons around 2nd grade or 3rd grade.

How Much Time to Teach Writing in Print and Cursive?

Handwriting used to be taught in schools for 45 minutes a day. Today, cursive might not be taught at all. Whether handwriting is mandatory or taught in schools, as a good homeschooling parent, you’ll want to teach your children how to write in cursive and print.

Depending on the child’s age and interest level, we suggest dedicated handwriting practice most days of the week for 10-30 minutes. The more a child practices handwriting, the better their penmanship will be.

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Benefits of Learning to Write in Cursive

  • Writing in cursive enables a person to read words written in cursive.
  • Cursive writing takes less time than manuscript printing.
  • Writing in cursive significantly impacts the development of a young brain.
  • Cursive writing helps in areas of thinking cognition (understanding).
  • Writing in cursive helps with memory.
  • Cursive handwriting stimulates brain synapses and synchronicity between the left and right hemispheres of the brain.
  • Writing in cursive allows for greater self-expression.
  • There is a profound effect on the development and activity of the brain when one learns to write in cursive.
  • The ability to read cursive allows one to read historical documents without a translation or mediator.
  • A person must be able to sign their name on important documents – hence, the word signature.

Watch this video about the importance of cursive writing.

Handwriting Curriculum Consistency

A Professor’s View on Print vs Cursive Writing

Watch this interview with Harding University (Searcy, Arkansas) Associate Dean and Professor of Education Dr. Clara Carroll. Dr. Carroll says there is room for children to learn print, cursive, and keyboarding. They are all important skills.

Dr. Carroll also suggests that students stay consistent with one type of handwriting curriculum. It can be confusing for students to change curriculum because how a student learns to write varies from curriculum to curriculum. While there are many effective methods, learning to print and write cursive is more important than the handwriting system used.

Handwriting Homeschool Curriculum, Workbooks, and Books (on Amazon)

When people have the ability to write, they can read, communicate, think, and express themselves better. For more information about handwriting, read the following books.

Books About Handwriting for Adults and Teens

Please note that these books are about handwriting. See the next section for books to help you learn how to print or write cursive.

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Handwriting Books for Adults

If you didn’t learn cursive in school, you aren’t alone. Many of today’s parents weren’t taught how to write in cursive. However, it’s never too late to learn how to print or write cursive.

You can improve your handwriting and help your children develop good handwriting too. Find the handwriting book that’s right for you!

Handwriting Improvement Practice Books for Teens and Adults

Get Handwriting Paper for Your Kids!

Handwriting Practice Sheets & Paper

When learning to print or write cursive, it’s very helpful to practice using handwriting paper. As a child progresses with their handwriting skills, the ruling or width of each handwriting line decreases.

When learning to print or write in cursive, the broken midline is helpful for writing practice. In the beginning stages, you’ll want to have a red baseline. Later, the paper will have a blue baseline. Finally, the handwriting student can progress to standard composition paper.

It’s more important that the student progress sequentially than on grade-level.

In summary, young students generally learn to print and older elementary-aged kids learn to write cursive. Students progress through handwriting practice paper that progresses from wider to narrower lines.

Initially, handwriting practice paper should have a blue topline, a broken midline, a red baseline, and empty space beneath the red baseline. Later, the student will progress to a wide-ruled paper, then a college-ruled paper.

Handwriting with Occupational Therapist: Polly Benson

Whether your child is just learning to write or you have a teenager who struggles with handwriting, this video interview contains helpful handwriting tips you can use today.

Get Polly’s Handwriting Lessons Here.

Create Handwriting Lines Anywhere with LegiLiner Stamps!

From kindergarten students to teenagers, LegiLiner stamps are helpful and fun.

Here are a few ways you can use LegiLiner self-inking stamps.

  • Create handwriting lines on any piece of paper.
  • Use for art projects and scrapbooking.
  • Make homemade games with these fun stamps.
  • Use Legiliner stamps to make number lines, graphs, etc.
  • Make roads for toy cars to drive on.
  • Use to make music staff lines anywhere.

Purchase LegiLiner stamps on Amazon!

See ALL the LegiLiner stamps and learn about Polly’s handwriting lessons!

LegiLiner Self Inking Handwriting Stamp.  Make Your Own Handwriting Lines.  More Ideas:  Arts & Crafts, Scrapbooking, Music lines, Math, Roads for Toy Cars.

Best Handwriting Curriculum & Workbooks for Homeschooled Students (Multiple Grades & Ages)

Below is an overview of handwriting curricula that works well for homeschooled students. Each method teaches both print and cursive handwriting. While this list is not all-encompassing, it is some of the best handwriting curriculum available.

While there are several print and cursive styles to choose from, we suggest choosing a method with care and continuing with that method throughout your child’s education.

If your child attends a public or private school and you want to supplement their curricula, this handwriting curriculum can work well for you too.

Zaner-Bloser Handwriting Curriculum

If you want a simple, affordable, and easy-to-use handwriting curriculum, Zaner-Bloser Handwriting Curriculum is a good option. It’s unlikely that you’ll need the teacher’s manuals.

Zaner-Bloser curriculum is easy to use and inexpensive. They also offer handwriting books in both Spanish and English. The book levels generally correspond with the grade level of a child. This curriculum is widely used and effective.

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The D’Nealian Method of Handwriting

Public school teacher, Donald Neal Thurber, developed the D’Nealian Method of Handwriting. The purpose of this curriculum is to make the transition from printing to cursive easier for students. This method adds tails to the beginning and end of print letters and slants the letters. Some schools still use this method, but it was primarily used in the 1970s and 80s.

Handwriting Without Tears Curriculum (published by Learning Without Tears)

While Handwriting Without Tears works well for many kids, it is excellent for kinesthetic learners and kids struggling with handwriting.

The Handwriting Without Tears curriculum has workbooks and manipulatives available. If you have a child who is a kinesthetic learner, you’ll want to consider using this multi-sensory approach to handwriting.

Kinesthetic learners benefit from moving, touching, and using manipulatives (tools, toys, objects) to help them learn. If this sounds like your child, you’ll want to incorporate sensory activities to help your child develop their handwriting skills.

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Hand Written vs Typed Notes: Which Is Better for Your Memory?

If you’re debating whether to take notes by hand or on your laptop, it’s important to understand that writing in cursive will lead to better retention. Even if you print your notes, you’ll retain what you’re writing better than if you typed the information. This is because when handwriting, you must summarize what you hear. As a result, you’ll remember the information better by writing rather than typing.

Watch this video about whether typing or handwriting is better for your memory.

50+ Dollar Store Ideas!

Help Your Child Improve Their Handwriting.

    Helpful Handwriting Videos

    Watch handwriting tutorials, curriculum reviews, and more videos to help your kids improve their penmanship.

    • Lowercase letters.
    • Uppercase letters.
    • Write cursive letters.
    • Print individual letters.
    • Learn a proper pencil grip.
    Handwriting Videos: Curriculum Reviews, Handwriting Tutorials, Helpful Information.

    More Articles, Podcast Episodes, and Videos for You

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