Our aim is for every pupil to develop a comfortable, fluent, legible and attractive style of handwriting. In order to raise standards of handwriting and presentation for all pupils we use a consistent approach to learning handwriting throughout the school.


What is continuous cursive handwriting?

The main features are:

  • Each letter starts on the line
  • Pupils keep the pencil on the paper giving a very fluent style
  • Pupils eventually develop the ability to produce letters without thinking
  • The automatic style releases the brain to concentrate on other ideas, for example, spelling, grammar, style, content and syntax


What are the benefits of continuous cursive handwriting?

  • It is beneficial to all pupils, including those with dyslexia, as the continuous motor movement means they do not have to think about the order of the letters As each letter begins at the same point on the line there is less opportunity for pupils to reverse their letters.
  • The motor memory in a pupil’s hands and fingers help him/her to learn new spellings as each word is made up of one movement
  • One style is taught throughout the school
  • No need to change or relearn shapes from printed to cursive style
  • Natural spaces occur between words automatically
  • Fluency established by early use of joined up letters helps pupils express ideas in written form more easily
  • Improvement in spelling as the hand motions required to form the words encourage muscle memory. At the same time the natural flow helps the process become automatic.


Writing Position

Maintaining a good writing position is an important component to correct letter size, formation and spacing. Here are some important tips to get you started:

  • Sit comfortably, but maintain good posture.
  • Lean forward slightly.
  • Leave feet flat on the floor.
  • Have both arms resting on the table or desk while you work.
  • Hold the pencil between your thumb and the first two fingers of your writing hand.
  • Maintain constant pressure when holding the pencil.
  • Be certain your grip is not too tight, and not too loose.
  • If you are a right-handed writer, position the paper so that the top is slanting to your left. If you are a left- handed writer, position the paper so that the top is slanting to your right.


 When your child first comes to school, they will learn to form every letter with an entry and exit stroke.

This is a solid foundation for teaching joined handwriting later on. Children are taught that every letter starts on the line. Next we begin to teach digraphs and trigraphs as joined letters. The first being

Constant repetition is the key, emphasising the correct entry and exit strokes every time. It is essential that your child gets into good habits early on and this includes having the correct pencil grip.

One of the advantages of the continuous cursive style is that you can quickly identify when a child is forming letters incorrectly. For example trying to start a    at the bottom and moving clockwise, rather than starting with the entry stroke and then moving anticlockwise from the top of the letter to the bottom.

Although the continuous cursive style can seem quite laborious to start as it takes slightly longer to write each letter separately, you will really see the benefits when your child starts to join fully towards the end of Year 1 and in Year 2. 

Important points to remember

Here is a short film on correct pencil grip:
and another for correct seating position: