Regardless of the fact that we live in a technologically superior society where almost everything is done with computers and smart phones, kids still need to learn how to write by hand. Handwriting is much more than just putting letters together on a piece of paper; it is a key part of learning how to read and communicate. Time is often spent in the Reception and Year One classes, helping children gain pencil control skills.
Stencils are a fun tool that help your kids begin to understand about pencil control. They can provide a connection of lines, helping them create recognisable shapes. It can easily be used at home, doesn’t require any ‘messy’ play and the best bit is that a child does not feel they are doing handwriting work.
The main reasons why stencils are effective in the handwriting
Improves the development of fine motor skills.
Fine motor skills refer to the growth of miniature muscles in the hand and enable actions like grasping small objects. The use of stencils by kids enables their fingers and muscles to become stronger. As they master the skills of drawing shapes, letters and numbers they are improving their fine motor skills. This provides them with the ability to control the way they hold a pencil or pen. If a child is to develop a fast and fluent writing style, then they must master how to handle a pencil.
- Practising with stencils is a fun and relaxed way to help kids with their handwriting skills.
- Children learn better in a less restrictive environment, where they have the freedom and liberty to make mistakes and carry on trying until they get the hang of it. This is why making handwriting and the skills associated with it fun is crucial. Using stencils does just that. It allows the kids to play and have fun without thinking too much of the outcome. But after several tries, they will start to improve their pencil control skills.This in turn, will improve their handwriting skills.
Using stencils can help kids develop their eye-to-hand coordination.
Eye-to-hand coordination or eye-hand coordination, is the ability of the eye to guide the hands in movements. When writing, the eye needs to provide guidance to the hand in forming letters and making sure they stay within the lines.
Given that handwriting is the basic tool used in most subjects i.e. taking notes, taking tests, etc., poor handwriting can have a damaging effect on school performance. As parents, you can support your child significantly with their writing skills by doing simple but fun activities at home. Handwriting takes time and practice. Using stencils to draw is one way to help a child learn pencil control skills. One of the fundamentals in handwriting.