Every individual has his/her own individual style of penmanship, and some of these styles may have derived from the Palmer method of writing. What we know of today as cursive was developed around the 18th and 19th centuries by Platt Spencer—the originator—and Paul Palmer. This method became widely used in schools; however, print is now more widely used.


1. Letter formation
2. Size
3. Spacing

To successfully teach handwriting, you have to follow the basics of handwriting in order. No matter which letter the child chooses to write, he or she should always begin at the correct starting point and follow through to the correct ending point. Tracing dotted letters from start to finish can be an effective method of learning this. Repeating this step should allow for the correct slant and letter formation.

The size of the letter should stay consistent every time—in some cases, make note that the heights of upper and lower case letters are the same. Dd Ff Hh Ii Jj Kk Ll Tt. ALL of the upper case letters are also the same height as the other upper case letters. It is usually easier to figure out letter proportion by writing on lined paper.

Spacing between letters and words should also stay consistent. A student can use his or her pencil eraser to check that the distance between letters match up. In order to write a good letter, holding the pencil in the proper position becomes vital. At first, young children especially will tend to hold the pencil near the top, but with instruction and time, they will learn that their letters will be easier to make if they hold the pencil in the right spot.

Learning to write

A basic skill yet so complex, writing involves having mastered fine motor skills Not all the letters should be taught at once. Once several are mastered, it is then ok to master the remaining ones. At first, a child will write random letters out of order, and then he or she will start to group them together. Children will have a better understanding of the way a letter is formed once the basics of handwriting are all put together.


Handwriting is an acquired skill that is needed in order to comprehend reading. Even though some people may type more than they handwrite, handwriting is still a requirement for children in school. Once a child knows the right way to write, he or she can begin to understand spelling, grammar, punctuation, and organization.

A child who is struggling with handwriting is in luck because there are many free online worksheets that you can print out that can help him or her through this process.