16–20 February 2016
Keen interest in graphomotor skills at Didacta 2016: diverse workshops, graphomotor exercises and information at the Schreibmotorik stand
At the Schreibmotorik stand at the Didacta trade fair for education and training, (prospective) teachers, nursery-school teachers and parents learned how children’s handwriting can be promoted in a targeted and efficient way with a colourful programme of scientific workshops and playful exercises.
A recent parent survey conducted on behalf of the Schreibmotorik Institut in cooperation with the Bundeselternrat made it clear that too many children are having problems with handwriting. In the survey, which was presented at Didacta, 23 percent of the surveyed parents admitted that their child has trouble writing for more than 30 minutes. Extrapolated to all of Germany, this amounts to 1.2 million children between the ages of six and twelve who cannot write legibly for longer periods and without cramping.
In view of this development, science must face the topic of graphomotor skills with its relevance to education policy. Teachers require adequate support in order to counteract the trend towards a deficit of motor skills. Neuroscientific findings have show that motor development is also important for cognitive development.
SUPPORTING TEACHERS, PROMOTING GRAPHOMOTOR SKILLS
Workshops on the following topics were offered at the Schreibmotorik Institut trade fair stand:
(1) “Teacher in need! Problems with handwriting are on the increase. How to counteract them early.”
(2) “How can you recognise potential in learning to write? Individual diagnostic and promotional approaches.”
(3) “Learning to write is learning to move! Why graphomotor shills are so important.”
At the end, the listeners were able to try out the graphomotor exercises used in the lectures for themselves.
In addition, measurements were carried out using the WritingCoach® writing analysis tool. In this way, those interested could learn about their individual sequence of movements when writing, and their writing type. After just five minutes of test measurements, the SchreibCoach® generates a report showing the subject’s writing performance in the criteria writing frequency, fluidity, pressure, and basic hand and finger movements.
GRAPHOMOTOR EXERCISES AND STIMULATING DISCUSSIONS
Information provided on the topic of handwriting was very well received: numerous interested teachers and parents whose children are having trouble with writing had intensive discussions with the Schreibmotorik Institut employees and tried the graphomotor exercises for themselves. Many teachers learned how they could recognise weak motor skills in children and efficiently counteract this with playful exercises.
The well attended Schreibmotorik Institut trade fair stand, the great media response at the press conference for the parent survey and the “Handwriting 2020” campaign show how important basic research into graphomotor skills continues to be.