How can drawing doodles help handwriting?
There are many students who find forming letters tricky and it is not specific to a particular age. Students end up with wobbly lines on the page, letters that are too big, or word spacing that is difficult to identify. All of these problems relate to having reduced pencil control skills. They can be easily improved, even for those students who are reluctant writers.
Have you ever considered encouraging your child to be drawing doodles?
It is a fantastic creative solution to improving handwriting that can take as little as a few minutes a day. It can also happen any where and at any time. Where else can we improve and master a major lifeskill by having fun?
When we look at the letters that we write, the alphabet is made up of straight lines and round circles. This is true if we write capitals or lower case letters.
If you think about the lowercase letter b, you have one straight line and then a curve which is similar to a circle. Again the letter w has four straight lines.
When you encourage your child to doodle, you are helping them develop control with a pen or pencil. The key is to encourage drawings with both lines and curves.
Who are they for?
Drawing doodles can be great for any age. For younger and reluctant writers, it can take away the fear of seeing a blank piece of paper. As students get older, they may not want to ‘doodle’ unless someone tells them it’s a good way to relax. Hence the rise in mindfulness colouring books. I’d like to propose that we readdress this belief. Drawing doodles is an ageless activity. It can help some to concentrate. It helps others to think creatively. In a world full of AI we need to allow our imaginations to wander.
Below are a selection of different doodles that your child can do. There is number one and number two. Number one or more for the younger years and number two for the older students. However, all the doodles here are a great way of being able to develop pencil control skills. The images become harder when you are not allowed to take your pen off the paper. They can also help students learn how hard to press when writing with a pen or pencil. See the shaggy dog image in particular.
When to be drawing doodles?
Now! Like handwriting and learning to write there is no set time in the day to be drawing doodles.
There are many times that we can be doodling. Before starting any creative writing activity. Taking notes or use it as a transition between activities. Alternatively, as a family, you could have a doodle drawing competition. I would suggest thinking of it as a warm up activity to handwriting. Athletes warm their bodies up before a big race. The same is true that our fine motor skills need to warm up before writing a long piece of writing. That’s why in our handwriting club, our worksheets have a warm-up activity. It can be pen control exercises, creative thinking, or physical hand movements. You can find out more about our handwritng club here.
Although doodling is often discouraged, it is actually a great handwriting warmup activity. Teachers don’t like doodles on paper because it messes up the work’s appearance. It also gives them an idea that a student had not been fully paying attention in class. I would suggest having a separate book or even a Post-it note to do the doodles on before writing is a great strategy.
Try drawing doodles to improve letter formation and handwriting skills. It can be beneficial.