A Closer Look at Handwriting and Copywork

 

Guest post by Gale of Imaginative Homeschool.

 

Copywork can help kids practice correct spelling and letter formation while getting exposed to great quotes and useful information. Precisely for these reasons, I’m picky about the fonts used in the copywork I give my kids. At least in this stage of our educational journey I want copywork and tracing work to mimic the style of lettering my child is learning in their regular handwriting lessons. I figure I’m not alone in this.

A Closer Look at Handwriting and Copywork in your homeschool with a comparison of resources available in the Build Your Bundle sale. hsbapost.com

So for that reason, when I was checking out the Build Your Bundle homeschool sale, I paid special attention to what font was used in the various copywork offerings there. Sometimes that info wasn’t easy to find. In many cases I had to visit the publishers’ websites or even contact the author to find out what style of lettering was used. To save others this hassle, I wanted to share what I found while you can benefit from the huge savings available through the Build Your Bundle sale.

Below you’ll find a list of the copywork and tracing work resources from this year’s Build Your Bundle sale organized by lettering type.

Regular Manuscript (ball and stick)

This is the most common text style used in early educational materials. The simple shapes make it easier for some children to learn, but writing some of the letters this way requires taking your pencil off the page, which can slow down writing later. Also, it can be more difficult to transition to handwriting from this type of font than some others.

BallAndStickManuscript copywork

Ball and Stick Manuscript

Armor of God Copywork – $7.99 Value (Copywork, Notebooking, & Lapbooks Bundle)
– Also includes D’Nealian and Cursive

Color Through Ancient History – $6.44 Value – (Charlotte Mason Inspired Bundle)

Handwriting Lessons Through Literature: The Story Book of Science – $15.00 Value (Charlotte Mason Inspired Bundle)
– Also available in cursive (3 styles), and HWT.

Horse Copywork – $3.00 Value (Copywork, Notebooking, & Lapbooks Bundle)

Missionary Copywork Collection– $8.97 Value (Copywork, Notebooking, & Lapbooks Bundle)
– Also includes D’Nealian and Cursive

Preschool Fun Pack – $5.47 Value – (Early Learning Bundle)

Summer Learning Activity Pack – $7.97 Value – (Early Learning Bundle)

Women’s History Collection – $4.47 Value – (Brother & Sister Bundle)
-The Women’s History Coloring Book and Women of the Bible Coloring book have traceables in Manuscript. The Women’s History Notebooking has some pages that COULD be used for copywork in a typical textbook font (not manuscript…see picture under TEXTBOOK below).

 

Write Through the Bible: Philippians (Manuscript, ESV) – $10.00 Value (Copywork, Notebooking, & Lapbooks Bundle)

HWT Printing

HWT (Handwriting Without Tears) style font is similar to manuscript, but the lowercase a,b,g, q and to some extent the p and d are different, allowing children to form the letters without taking their pencils off the page. It is usually upright but some of these use a slightly Italic version of this.

Handwriting without Tears copywork

Handwriting without Tears

Handwriting Lessons Through Literature: The Story Book of Science – $15.00 Value (Charlotte Mason Inspired Bundle)
– Slightly italic form. Also available in 3 styles of Cursive and Manuscript

Anne of Green Gables Copywork Set– $5.98 Value – (Brother & Sister Bundle, Copywork, Notebooking, & Lapbooks Bundle)

D’Nealian (Printing)

This style falls somewhere in between HWT printing and traditional cursive. Letters are slanted and many have curved “tails.” Lowercase a, b, g, q, p and d are otherwise formed similarly to HWT. The letter k contains a loop. The transition from D’Nealian to handwriting is usually easier than with other fonts, and is sometimes introduced in between teaching manuscript printing and handwriting.

DNealian copywork

D’Nealian

Armor of God Copywork – $7.99 Value (Copywork, Notebooking, & Lapbooks Bundle)

ASL Handwriting Unit – $5.00 Value (Early Learning Bundle)

Missionary Copywork Collection– $8.97 Value – (Copywork, Notebooking, & Lapbooks Bundle)
– Also includes Manuscript and Cursive

Cursive

Some people prefer to teach cursive BEFORE printing and some don’t teach cursive at all. It has been dropped from many public schools, but it has advantages (such as the speed of writing that comes from not needing to lift your pencil from the page between letters). While there are various styles of cursive, unfortunately I’m not very familiar with them all so I only mention the type of cursive if the product description specified which one was used.

cursive font copywork

Cursive

Armor of God Copywork – $7.99 Value (Copywork, Notebooking, & Lapbooks Bundle)
– Also includes Manuscript and D’Nealian

God’s Alphabet in Cursive – $16.00 Value (Elementary #1 Bundle)

Handwriting Lessons Through Literature: The Story Book of Science – $15.00 Value (Charlotte Mason Inspired Bundle)
– Available in three styles of cursive (slant, verticle, italic), as well as Manuscript and HWT

Missionary Copywork Collection– $8.97 Value (Copywork, Notebooking, & Lapbooks Bundle)
– Also includes Manuscript and D’Nealian

Super Hero Cursive Set – $3.50 Value (Early Learning Bundle)

Textbook Fonts

There are various font styles used in printed books which have letters (like the a and g pictured) which I’ve never seen anyone attempt to write. There is no curriculum that I know of that teaches kids how to write like this (save maybe books on how to do calligraphy or graphic design)…but they will need to know how to read it. While copywork with these fonts may not be as beneficial for teaching letter formation, it’s still useful for other purposes such as helping with memorization and learning about the topic of the copied text.

textbook font

Textbook

Women’s History Collection – $4.47 Value – (Brother & Sister Bundle)
– The Women’s History Notebooking has some pages that COULD be used for copywork in a typical textbook font. The Women’s History Coloring Book and Women of the Bible Coloring book’s traceables are in Manuscript.

Philippians in 28 Weeks – $18.95 Value (Character Bundle)

Unknown

Intermediate Language Lessons Part 1 – $10.00 Value (Charlotte Mason Inspired Bundle)
Intermediate Language Lessons Part 2 – $10.00 Value (Charlotte Mason Inspired Bundle)
I asked about what font is used for the copywork included in this curriculum. The publisher said that “In those language arts books, the copywork is simply text (poems, etc.) and then blank lines for the child to copy the selection. That way you can have them use just print or they can write in cursive if they are able.” I’m guessing this is probably a typical textbook font, but don’t know for certain.
One Week Only - Ends 5/23/16 - Save 93% on the Copywork, Notebooking, & Lapbooks Bundle

With handwriting becoming a lost art, one way that homeschoolers can encourage fine motor skills and an appreciation for literature and historical documents, as well as the Bible, is to use copywork on a regular basis.

Do you use copywork in your homeschool? What handwriting style do you prefer?

 

 

ImaginativeHomeschoolGale is a wife and mother to three boys, one of them homeschooled. Her blog is named Imaginative Homeschool after her imaginative homeschooler, and she believes make-believe and play can be powerful tools for learning. She also blogs about life as a blended homeschool-public school family, and will soon be starting a series on HWT lettering resources, and another on Story of the World lesson ideas. You can connect with her on Facebook and Pinterest.

 

A Word From Our Sponsors

«
Read the next post: »

Charlotte Mason Homeschooling on a Budget

 

If you love the process and methods of Charlotte Mason but shrink away from the expense, I have great news for you — it is possible to use Charlotte Mason in your homeschool on a budget! I have gathered some of my favorite tips and resources to show you how to reduce costs but give the education that you desire to your children.

Want to add some frugal Charlotte Mason inspired learning to your homeschool? Check out these great ideas! hsbapost.com

Charlotte Mason Homeschooling

There are 3 main themes to Charlotte Mason education and all can be achieved frugally.

Atmosphere

Surrounding and immersing your child in a positive learning environment.

Discipline

Cultivating good habits in your child’s life.

Life

Not just simple, boring, dry facts but living ideas.

Charlotte Mason Resources

You can even find free curriculum online to help you teach –Ambleside Online is an online FREE curriculum guide and book list that follows Charlotte Mason Principles.

Setting up the physical atmosphere

Nature is all around and it is free! Create a collection of nature items on a shelf or table with items you and your child gather — pinecones, leaves, shells, living plants, abandoned birds nests. Add items like a magnifying glass, journal, and sketchbook. If you’re new to nature study, you might want to read this post about Nature Study for Beginners.

Living books

These are a very large part of the Charlotte Mason philosophy. They are written in a more conversational or narrative style than in the style of a textbook or encyclopedia. They make subjects come alive for children rather than dry textbooks. You can find living books at  the library, Goodwill, yard sales, on Ebay, Facebook used curriculum groups, and local curriculum fairs.

Teach Math with Living Books – Use simple beans, buttons, rocks, wooden beads. You do not need a separate expensive curriculum. Choose living books instead of dull textbooks. Buy second hand when you can. I found these at a yard sale:

Math Curse

Math Curse living math book Charlotte Mason homeschooling

 

Sir Cumference and the First Round Table

Sir Cumference living math book Charlotte Mason homeschooling

 

 

We grabbed these wooden math manipulatives that are similar to a Charlotte Mason set at a fraction of the cost:

Charlotte Mason homeschooling wooden rods

Artists and Composers

This can be introduced and studied using books picked up from sources above, print pictures, play music from Youtube or other free sources. The resources available on the internet are nearly limitless, many sites offer free printable field guides, studies, and more. We’ve enjoyed A Young Scholar’s Guide to Composers from Bright Ideas Press, which is an affordable hands-on study. You can read my review here.

The Mystery of History is a living books approach to history studies.

Outdoors

Spend plenty of time outdoors with your child — studying, observing, journaling, learning, and gathering. There is so much to learn about the world right around them and it costs nothing! Outdoors is a major part of the CM education.

Some of my favorite Charlotte Mason homeschooling resources are on sale at huge discounts right now at the Build Your Bundle sale. Grab them while you can before May 23rd!

One Week Only - Ends 5/23/16 - Save 86% on the Charlotte Mason Inspired Bundle
Here are a few Charlotte Mason books for you that are free or cheap on Kindle. {Remember that prices change quickly on Amazon!}

Habits: The Mother’s Secret to Success

Charlotte Mason homeschooling book for moms

 

The Outdoor Life of Children

Charlotte Mason homeschooling outdoor life

 

A Twaddle Free Education

Charlotte Mason homeschooling twaddle free book

 

Do you use Charlotte Mason inspired resources in your homeschool?

 

Sara (148 Posts)

I'm a reader, writer, dreamer, wife, and homeschooling mom of 3 girls. We take a relaxed, eclectic, Charlotte Mason-leaning, Montessori-ish, literature-rich, delight-directed, almost unschooling-at-times approach to learning. Lots of unit studies, field trips, and lapbooks, too. I like to blog about our learning adventures (plus faith and encouragement) at Embracing Destiny.


A Word From Our Sponsors

Write Through the Bible Junior
«
Read the next post: »

10 Tips for Organizing Digital Homeschool Curriculum

 

We’re living in a digital age so it only makes sense that homeschooling resources are available digitally as well. Whether it’s a site like Khan Academy or Time4Learning or downloadable digital curriculum, it can help simplify things in your homeschool. Just like anything else in life, if it’s not kept up with it can quickly become disorganized. {If you’re still wondering about the benefits of digital homeschool curriculum, you’ll want to read this post.} I would encourage you to check out these tips for organizing digital homeschool curriculum.

10 practical tips to keep your digital homeschool curriculum organized so you can get the best use of it! hsbapost.com

#1. Keep your passwords in one spot

The issue with having digital homeschool curriculum is that it will oftentimes require passwords. You probably don’t want to have the same password for each log in. To take care of this issue, keep your passwords in one spot. Be smart about where you store your passwords, but also keep them close enough that you can retrieve them if necessary.

#2. Pick out a good organizational system

It’s going to be hard to stay organized with your homeschool curriculum if you cannot find an organizational system you like. My advice would be to use something like Dropbox to store PDFs, printables, and Word Documents. It’s nice to have a “go to spot” for all of your digital homeschooling curriculum. The cool thing about Dropbox is that you can even make folders within folders. It’s quite easy to stay organized. {You can read more about getting your homeschool organized in this post.}

#3. Start utilizing those bookmarks

In case you aren’t familiar with it, there is this really cool thing at the top of your Internet screen and it looks like a star. You can click it to bookmark the important Internet pages you visit often. Instead of typing the curriculum destination into your browser each time, bookmark it so it’s easier to find later down the road. You can even create a secret Pinterest board to store site pages you need on a regular basis.

#4. Backup your files

I’ve noticed that storing a bunch of important homeschooling curriculum on my desktop probably isn’t the best idea. If I do store anything on my desktop, I always back up my files. I have an external hard drive that helps me store anything I need. This is a nice way to deal with storing digital files, especially if you have a lot of them.

#5. Keep a running list

Another great way to organize those digital homeschooling files is to keep a running list. If you’re like any other homeschooling family, you may just collect as you go and the list will get overwhelming. You can use an Excel sheet or Google Docs to create a spreadsheet of all your digital homeschooling curriculum. Keep a list of the title, location, and any other important information you’ll need to find your curriculum quickly. Remember when it comes to being organized, it’s really all about how quickly you can find things as well. You can be as organized as you want, but if you can’t find it, what’s the point?

You can use a free printable planning form like this one from the Build Your Bundle homeschool sale, which features excellent digital curriculum from the top publishers in the homeschool world.
Click here to download the Build Your OWN Worksheet

#6. Utilize the search system on your computer

Let’s say you get your digital homeschooling curriculum organized, but lose something. You can use the search system on your computer to find any Word Document or PDF file that you need.

#7. Get organized immediately

From the time you buy a new curriculum; you need to get it organized immediately. Don’t delay in putting the digital curriculum where it goes because later it may be harder to locate and organize it. Ask me how I know! Getting it done NOW is always a great solution to disorganization. A hint to keep things from getting disorganized is to name the file exactly what it is!

Getting organized with your digital homeschooling curriculum may seem impossible, but with these tips you can do it. Some of the best advice is to pay attention to what you’re buying, get a good filing system in place, and start organizing things immediately. Remember that before you delete any of your files, contemplate on whether or not you plan on using them later for younger siblings.

How do you keep track of your digital homeschool curriculum?

 

Don’t miss the chance to stock up on quality digital homeschool curriculum at the Build Your Bundle sale. You can choose from 15 pre-assembled bundles by category, or build your own custom homeschool curriculum bundle. It’s a great deal,but it’s only here for a week so hurry!
Buy any 2 individual bundles OR Build Your OWN Bundles and get one free!

Sara (148 Posts)

I'm a reader, writer, dreamer, wife, and homeschooling mom of 3 girls. We take a relaxed, eclectic, Charlotte Mason-leaning, Montessori-ish, literature-rich, delight-directed, almost unschooling-at-times approach to learning. Lots of unit studies, field trips, and lapbooks, too. I like to blog about our learning adventures (plus faith and encouragement) at Embracing Destiny.


A Word From Our Sponsors

«
Read the next post: »