Tuesday, April 14, 2015

Memoria Press Review

Memoria Press Review
For the last few weeks the girls have had the honor of working with a great product by Memoria Press. We received a copy of new American Cursive 1. You can check it out here http://www.memoriapress.com/curriculum/penmanship/new-american-cursive. This level 1 book is geared for grades 1+ and sells for $22.95.

American Cursive 1 teaches beginning cursive writing. The book was developed by Iris Hatfield. She has over 35 years of experience in handwriting. By using NAC's simplified strokes New American Cursive helps children learn cursive at a younger age. The book uses a character Mr. Meerkat, to guide your child through making letters step-by-step. The directions are clear and easy to understand. It uses arrows to show your child the correct directions for forming letters. It gives lots of practice pages for both tracing and free hand. The New American Cursive book is also bound at the top instead of the side. This type of binding is a HUGE thing for us Lefties. We don't have to fight the binding.

I am using this book with Snoopy my 5 year old lefty. Though I started out with Hotrod girl using it. Once Snoopy realized it was bound at the top she threw a fit that it was for lefty's only. She thinks all books with binding was at the top are for lefty's. Sister is a good sport and gave up the book. So now Snoopy is writing in the book and Hotrod girl is waiting for hers to come in the mail. Snoopy has declared that she loves the book. She says that it is much easier than the last cursive handwriting book we tired. The directions are written so simple that even Snoopy can read them on her own. She says the arrows really help her out a lot. Being left handed she tends to want to start her letters from the right hand side. The arrows are a nice reminder of where to start and which direction her pencil needs to travel in.

It takes snoopy about 20 min to do the days lesson. A teachers guide at the front of the book will help you get started. I like that the program uses steps to help your child learn the letters.
The steps they uses are:
Introduction: How to form the letter.
Practice: They trace and then write the letter.
Play: These are exercises with a free space for drawing or trying out a new letter.

The teachers guide has you use a simple multi-sensory approach to learning the letter. This is how we are doing it:

1. I say the letter and use a few words that begin with that letter. 2. We feel the letter: This means we write the letter in the air and on our boogie boards. We talk about the strokes that are used in the letter. Are they curved or straight etc. Then she traces over the large letter on the instruction page in the book.
3 Write the letter: This is where the practice pages come in. Snoopy will basically trace and write the letter free hand on these pages. While I make sure she is holding the pencil correctly and is sitting straight at the desk. I also check to make sure she has the paper angled the right direction. For my righty she would tilt hers to the left. For my lefty she tilts hers paper to the right. After she has  finished the practice pages she is free to draw or write what ever she wants in the blank play space.

This is a picture of the one hand writing pages HotRod girl
did before snoopy took the book from her. Snoopy wouldn't let
me post a picture of hers. She says its not good yet.
So far New American Cursive has worked out really well. Snoopy's hand writing is improving and most importantly she is having fun. Hand writing is something she struggles with. It is good to see her starting to enjoy writing in cursive. We cant wait to try the next book. Hotrod girls is waiting for her book to come in the mail.

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