Handwritingtutorials: Practical modules for promoting writing skills in schools
The aim of the Erasmus+ project is to promote effective acquisition of handwriting in schools.
Educators and decision-makers will be made aware of the relevance of good handwriting as a key skill in terms of educational opportunities in general and literacy acquisition (such as spelling) in particular. It is about the development of writing skills in general – independent of the learnt or selected type of script.
Furthermore, the project will develop innovative, field-tested online tutorials and handouts for educators to promote writing skills in schools as well as in the transition from pre-school to primary school. The multipliers trained as part of the project will then be able to pass on their knowledge by offering training courses in the participating regions. Findings from research on handwriting are thus transferred to teacher training and an innovative, high quality teaching approach is promoted.
||interviews with experts, quantitative questioning, literature analysis, user test, formative and summative evaluation
Writing skills primarily involves the key skill of writing by hand, in addition to spelling and textual skills. The fundamental importance of successfully developing writing motor skills when learning to write, above all during the first school years, must not be underestimated. With increasing motoric assurance, learners are better able to engage in cognitive processes. This benefits spelling, memory retention and reading performance. The prerequisites for writing motor skills are created during pre-school years. In the process, bad habits such as cramped pen hold can set in which will interfere with learning to write later on. In this respect, this phase is also relevant to a holistic approach to the topic.
Many teachers feel insufficiently prepared when it comes to teaching handwriting, particularly when problems arise (Legakids teachers’ survey, 2010). The teachers’ survey conducted by the Schreibmotorik Institut and the German Union of Teachers in 2015 showed that 31% of girls and 51% of boys had difficulties when learning to handwrite. Almost two thirds of pupils in secondary schools cannot write for more than 30 minutes without complaint. They are at a disadvantage in their educational efforts, because sufficient writing skills are a key competence for lifelong learning and social participation. In the long term, it is apparent that 11% of European school leavers leave school without any qualifications (as of 2016; according to Eurostat, 2018), many of whom have poor literacy skills. They run the risk of becoming functional illiterate (German Commission for Unesco, 2002).
In view of this situation, there is a need for action: children need targeted support in developing their handwriting. Educators require further training and practical materials for promoting writing skills. Additionally, the principles of teaching writing should be evidence-based and follow the results of linguistic, neuroscience and motoric research.
September 2018 - August 2020
The project is carried out by Schreibmotorik Institut (Coordinator) and the following partners:
This project has been funded with support from the European Commission. This publication [communication] reflects the views only of the author, and the Commission cannot be held responsible for any use which may be made of the information contained therein.