Now that your child knows lots of letter sounds, they are keen to use their phonic knowledge to write. The process of writing is not easy and research has shown that for some children, especially boys, holding a pencil can be physically painful if the muscles of the thumb and fingers are not strong enough.
Why not try some of the following activities at home to help develop the necessary muscles for writing:
- paint with fingers and with a variety of brushes
- use dough and plasticine to pound, roll, mould and pinch
- use scissors, hole punches and staplers
- pick up and sort collections of pulses, pasta and buttons
- let your child help prepare fruit and vegetables by cutting and pealing
- do up buttons and zips independently
Please encourage your child to write at home and hold the pencil correctly. However, remember that if your child’s muscles are not ready, forcing them to write at length may put them off. Practising a little every day and doing some of the above activities is far more beneficial than a longer period of writing practice.