October 17, 2014


One Side of the Fence: Struggle

Hand work is hard for him. Pencils. Paintbrushes. Notes and notetaking. He struggles to control the lines. He gets exasperated. Frustrated. Mad.

Let's do something about it. Let's build you up, my sweet boy. Let's find a way for you not to struggle, but soar!

So all summer long after second grade had finished, every single weekday the cursive lessons came out. The book was opened, and he and I practiced. I practiced mine; he practiced his. Ten minutes, maybe one minute more. We were a sloping, curving, laughing, growling, handwriting duo.

Every grade is all about science, and language, and math, and visits to the library. Every student, every year has P.E. and gets to do drama with Miss Emma Jane. But only third-graders learn cursive. It's how every day begins.

And being frustrated with third grade because of loopy letters,

seems upside down,

inside out,

altogether unfortunate,

and just



Published: October 17, 2014 | Filed under: Home

Comments (2)
Carol Federoff said:
October 18, 2014 @ 3:41 PM

I'm sorry it's a struggle. There's much controversy these days as to whether or not cursive is even truly necessary. I can't imagine not teaching it, but I do think I may be more lax about it with my littlest guy. I've been reading a lot about the Charlotte Mason method recently and it would appear that handwriting methods were not an area of great concern in the younger years. I won't tell you what to do for your own child - but maybe let it slide for awhile... it may develop naturally without the intensity.

Jane G Meyer said:
October 24, 2014 @ 2:10 PM

Carol, thanks for your sweet comment. We finished cursive, though it was a struggle, just so he could have one less thing to be frustrated with at school this year. Doing the work at home, in a relaxed environment, with lots of play time before and after, was a good solution, I think... I believe that cursive is great for the brain, and that not teaching it in school (or at home) is a shame. I've seen such a decline in handwork in general these last twenty years of being a parent and it worries me that our children will become adults with few practical skills and an inability to problem solve with their hands...

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