Programs & Products

LEARNING WITHOUT TEARS PRODUCTS

HANDWRITING WITHOUT TEARS

  • Q: Why should I choose Handwriting Without Tears over other handwriting programs?

    A: Our innovative curriculum draws from more than 40 years of classroom experience and research to provide developmentally appropriate strategies for early writing success. The method and strategies we have developed work for children who aren’t successful with other handwriting methods. The simple vertical style of print and cursive we teach is developmentally easier to learn. In addition, Handwriting Without Tears uses multisensory teaching strategies that appeal to all styles of learners and child friendly, consistent language in all grades.

  • Q: Why is the Handwriting Without Tears teaching order different? How does it work?

    A: Our unique letter teaching order is successful because it follows a scaffolded developmental teaching sequence. We teach easy letters first, beginning with capitals, and then teach letters in groups of similar stroke sequence. When students master easier skills, they are better prepared to learn more difficult groups—those prone to reversals or having diagonal lines. The teaching order allows children to gain mastery and confidence more quickly and can focus on the content of their work rather than the mechanics of letter formation. The result is writing that is fluid, legible, and automatic.

    If our teaching order isn’t ideal for your school or district’s ELA needs, it can be customized to fit any requirement.

  • Q: Your program emphasizes a vertical style of print and cursive. Will students still be able to develop their own style?

    A: Absolutely! By using Handwriting Without Tears techniques, your students will learn the essentials of handwriting and develop a solid foundation to become proficient with letter formation, placement of letters on lines, spacing between letters and words, and differentiating the size of capital and lowercase letters. Eventually, students will develop their own style after the basics are mastered.

  • Q: How does Handwriting Without Tears align with the Common Core State Standards?

    A: Our products and resources meet the goals of multiple standards. The majority of our products and resources correlate best with the English Language Arts standards for Common Core, despite there being few specific handwriting standards. Often, a variety of activities and products will achieve the same goal or standard, making it easy to reach children’s various learning styles.

  • Q: How can I help my students with their grip?

    A: We prefer small tools because large tools promote a fisted grip, whereas small tools promote a mature grip. If you have large, chunky crayons, break them into small pieces. Put away the markers and take them out just for a few activities during the school year. Use crayons each day. If necessary, ask others at your school for old crayons. These are ideal for breaking into smaller pieces.

  • Q: Your paper uses double lines. Our school uses three lines. Will this lead to confusion?

    A: The average classroom has 5–9 styles of paper and we want to teach students how to write on all of them. Our double lines are designed to help students master handwriting and develop an internal sense of size and letter placement that eases the transition to other styles of paper. Our Double Line Paper eliminates line confusion. Directions are plain and clear. The base line keeps the writing straight, and the midline controls the size of the letters.

  • Q: How can I use the HWT program for a left-handed student?

    All of our student editions are left-hand friendly! We have designed our student editions with models for the children to copy on both sides of the page, so that left-handed students don’t cover the model they are asked to copy. This alleviates the problem of left-handed individuals having to hook their wrists to see the models, enabling them to maintain correct positioning.

  • Q: I learned to write cursive with slanted letters. Why does Handwriting Without Tears teach children using a vertical style of cursive letters?

    We teach a vertical style of cursive because it is easier to write and to read. If a child has mastered cursive formations and connections and is developing a slanted style, that’s okay! The focus should be on ensuring their writing is neat and legible.

  • Q: I am presenting the Handwriting Without Tears program to my school/district, and I need help. Where do I start?

    A: Thank you for being an advocate for our program! We’ll provide you with in-service materials to help you present to your school or school district about our program and the importance of teaching handwriting skills. We can also send handouts (brochures, handouts, research, scripts, and overheads) to help you present.

     

    Visit our dedicated advocate site for more information on these resources.

Get support and answers about our digital handwriting tool here!

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GET SET FOR SCHOOL

  • Q: Why should I choose your Pre-K program over other, similar programs?

    A: We designed Get Set for School to be a right-sized Pre-K program that teaches skills the way young students learn best—through purposeful plan and active engagement. Other programs can be too large, too comprehensive, and difficult to implement. With Get Set for School, getting students on track for kindergarten readiness is simple. With scaffolded instruction across all developmental learning domains and engaging, hands-on manipulatives, our program supports educators, increases family participation, and enables children of different abilities to achieve.

    Visit our dedicated Get Set for School site to get samples, watch videos, and learn more.

  • Q: Why does Get Set for School only teach capital letter formation in Pre-K?

    A: When children learn to write their names, capitals are easier. While Get Set for School does teach Pre-K students to recognize lowercase letters, but it only teaches them how to write capital letters.

    Capitals are easy:

    • They all have one starting place: the top.
    • They are all the same size.
    • They are familiar (road signs, keyboards, TV).

    Lowercase letters are more difficult:

    • They have different starting places.
    • They have different sizes and positions.
  • Q: Are your Pre-K materials age appropriate for very young children?

    A: Our materials list features many products that can be adapted for 3-year-old students. The My First School Book activity book is designed for students in Pre-K. There are also many parts of Get Set for School that you can implement with 3-year-olds.

     

    Here are a few suggestions:

    • Use various hands-on activities to help young children build strength and motor skills.
    • Teach grip using small or broken bits of chalk or crayon that children can grasp easily and comfortably.
    • Use the Get Set for School Sing Along CD to teach and encourage group play, cooperation, participation, movement, and imitation.
    • Introduce the children to Mat Man! They will love putting him together. Toward the end of age 3, they may be ready to draw him with you.
    • Use all the Pre-K letter play activities; just instruct teachers to avoid formal instruction of letters or using pencils to write letters/names.

    Visit our Get Set for School page for more information!

  • Q: How can I help my students with their grip?

    A: We prefer small tools because large tools promote a fisted grip, whereas small tools promote a mature grip. If you have large, chunky crayons, break them into small pieces. Put away the markers and take them out just for a few activities during the school year. Use crayons each day. If necessary, ask others at your school for old crayons. These are ideal for breaking into smaller pieces.

  • Q: How do I use Get Set for School with my other Pre-K curricula?

    Get Set for School is a complete Pre-K program. But if you want to integrate lessons and materials from our program with other Pre-K programs, you can refer to our user-friendly Teacher’s Guides. The activities in these guides and our multisensory materials are organized by domain or skill set in a developmental sequence. You can choose activities based on what your students like, what they need, what fits into your theme, or by using the Scope and Sequence Weekly Plan within the teacher's guides.

  • Q: What type of assessments are in Get Set for School?

    A: In the Literacy & Math teacher's guides, the Check for Understanding section of each activity helps you determine what your children know. Using three key methods, Observe, Review Work, and Elicit Responses, you will be able to assess your students’ progress over time. We also have an informal kindergarten readiness assessment in our My First School Book activity book.

  • Q: I am presenting the Get Set for School program to my school/district, and I need help. Where do I start?

    A: Thank you for being an advocate for our program! We’ll provide you with in-service materials to help you present to your school or school district about our program. We can also send handouts (brochures, handouts, research, scripts, and overheads) to help you present.

    Visit our dedicated advocate site for more information on these resources.

KEYBOARDING WITHOUT TEARS

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