Let’s bring handwriting sensibility to a conscious level throughout the day.
Too ambitious, you think? Not really. Once children become attuned to listen for the clinking of dice, efforts to print letters the correct size becomes more routine and deliberate.
During any writing assignment, walk around with a few dice in your palm or in a container. Children quickly learn that at any given moment, you may stop by their desk and ask them to critique their printing. Of course, it’s important to put matters into proper perspective. Suggest to the teachers that they not interrupt the children while they are thick into their daily edits, free writes or other written assignments. But at the same time, encourage them to juggle some dice as they stroll between the desks. When children sense the clicking noise, they’ll knowingly and immediately focus on making Star-Worthy letters.
It’s a great strategy to use during any subject lesson. No reason you can’t be thinking about neat printing during science or social studies.
What’s more… it’s a perfect adjunct to a push-in or collaborative therapy session. Model how stopping by one child’s desk causes a domino effect among the rest of the class. Each child knows s/he could be next.
But on the occasions when it’s not until you arrive in a classroom that you realize you’ve forgotten your dice, all is not lost.
Got fingers? Then shoot. Both student and therapist/teacher hide one hand behind their backs. On the count of three, each thrusts the hidden hand into sight with anywhere from zero to five fingers pointed forward. Note in this game… a closed fist stands for six. Add up all the digits (or fist) for the total number of times that child has to make a Star-Worthy letter.
Playing cards work fine, too.
In fact, there is no excuse not to sneak in a little extra practice. Even without the audible reminder of the dice, a Machiavellian rubbing of your two hands together will tip off your students that a game of chance is just an errant letter away!