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Write Dance in Reception

Discussion in 'Early Years' started by pinkpebble, Dec 22, 2008.

  1. Hi I wondered if anyone is using Write Dance in Reception. If so are you using the one which is called "in the Nursery" (3 to 5) or the next one?

    Do you use it alongside handwriting sessions to teach formation?

    Thank you
  2. Msz

    Msz Established commenter

    I did use Write Dance (nursery 3-5) but have moved onto Penpals for handwriting F1 & F2. I sometimes use Write Dance in the hall but not as a regular activity.

  3. Hi Msz,

    Thanks, I used penpals at my previous school, but we teach cursive so it would not be any good?

    What did you think of write dance? What about children who are already writing, is still appropriate for them?
  4. Msz

    Msz Established commenter

    The children enjoy the activities although I find the stories odd. I think Write Dance helps focus on the physical development needed for writing and does help. For children already writing the next book might be better but I've never used it so can't give a personal opinion.
    Penpals focuses on the basic movements needed for writing the letter families and I would think it would be relatively simple to adjust the F2 materials to cursive style.

  5. Thanks Msz,

    We had the individual penpal books, so there is probably more material out now. Will have a look thank you.
  6. We use "Write Dance in the Nursery" in Nursery and "Write Dance" in Reception. We use it every week, do activities in the hall and incorporate them into the areas in our unit. It works really well, the children love it, and it makes a real difference to their handwriting. I like "WriteDance" better than the nursery version because the music is better, although our Nursery Teacher uses her own music for some of it. I dont use the stories very much and when I do I adapt them to fit with whatever else we are doing - its the movements that matter. So, the Volcano became Fireworks, Circles and Eights became Snowmen etc.
  7. Please can someone tell me what penpals is? I know of Wirte Dance and will be using that shortly, but don't know about penpals.


  8. Msz

    Msz Established commenter

    Penpals is a scheme for 3-11 year olds The F1 materials include music for movement and ideas for developing the actions required to form letters correctly. F2 moves onto letter familes and formation.
  9. The blurb for Penpals says:

    Introduction; DEVELOPING GROSS MOTOR SKILLS; Unit 1; Introduction and the vocabulary of movement; Unit 2; Large movements for handwriting; Unit 3; Responding to music; DEVELOPING FINE MOTOR SKILLS; Unit 4; Introduction and hand and finger play; Unit 5; Making and modelling; Unit 6; Links to art; Unit 7; One-handed tools and equipment; DEVELOPING PATTERNS AND BASIC LETTER MOVEMENT; Unit 8; Pattern making; Unit 9; Responding to music; Unit 10; Straight line patterns; Unit 11; Investigating loops; Unit 12; Investigating circles; Unit 13; Investigating angled patterns; Unit 14; Investigating eights and spirals; Unit 4 nursery rhymes in full; Letter families; The lower case alphabet

    I'm sure this is a lovely sequence of things to 'do', but what a convoluting way to teach handwriting.

    What worries me also is why it is a several year programme.

    Whilst this might be a wide-reaching scheme of work, I wouldn't want teachers to think that all of this is an actual necessity in the business of teaching handwriting.

    With our over-packed curriculum, wouldn't it be better to - literally - teach 'handwriting' and get o with it so the children can apply it automatically when they need to write - which is pretty early on and all the time!

    [​IMG]<a>View PDF Sample Chapter[/URL]
    --> -->
  10. Msz

    Msz Established commenter

    Debbie it is only the F1 (nursery version ) that contains those elements by the F2 programme children have moved onto conventional letter formation work moving into cursive writing as the scheme progresses

    Parent information sheet; INSET sheet; Pencil hold and posture sheet;
    1; Introducing long ladder letters: l,i,t,u,j,y; 2; Practising long
    ladder letters: l,i; 3; Practising long ladder letters: t,u; 4;
    Practising long ladder letter: j,y; 5; Practising all the long ladder
    letters; 6; Introducing one-armed robot letters: r,b,n,h,m,k,p; 7;
    Practising one-armed robot letters: b,n; 8; Practising one-armed robot
    letters: h,m; 9; Practising one-armed robot letters: k,p; 10;
    Practising all the one-armed robot letters; 11; Introducing capital
    letters: L,I,T,U,J,Y; 12; Introducing capital letters: R,B,N,H,M,K,P;
    13; Introducing curly caterpillar letters: c,a,d,o,s,g,q,e,f: 14;
    Practising curly caterpillar letters: a,d; 15; Practising curly
    caterpillar letters: o,s; 16; Practising curly caterpillar letters:
    g,q; 17; Practising curly caterpilllar letters: e,f; 18; Practising all
    the curly caterpillar letters; 19; Introducing zig-zag letters:
    z,v,w,x; 20; Practising zig-zag letters: v,w,x; 21; Introducing capital
    letters: C,A,D,O,S,G,Q,E,F; 22; Introducing capital letters: Z,V,W,X;
    23; Exploring ch, th and sh; Penpals writing mats (RH & LH);
    Photocopy masters

    ... Y5/6
    1; Revision: practising sloped writing; 2; Revision: practising the
    joins; 3; Developing style for speed: joining from t; 4; Developing
    style for speed: looping from g, j and y; 5; Developing style for
    speed: joining from f; 6; Developing style for speed; joining from s;
    7; Developing style for speed: writing v, w, x and z at speed; 8;
    Developing style for speed: pen breaks in longer words; 9; Different
    styles for different purposes; 10; Assessment; 11; Haiku project:
    making notes; 12; Haiku project: organising ideas; 13; Haiku project:
    writing a draft; 14; Haiku project: publishing the haiku; 15; Haiku
    project: evaluation; 16; Letter project: using information from a text
    to make notes; 17; Letter project: structuring an argument; 18; Letter
    project: improving a draft; 19; Letter project: publishing a letter;
    20; Letter project: evaluation; 21; Self-assessment: evaluating
    handwriting; 22; Self-assessment: checking the joins; 23;
    Self-assessment: consistency of size; 24; Self-assessment: letters
    resting on the baseline; 25; Self-assessment: ascenders and descenders;
    26; Self-assessment: consistency of size of capitals and ascenders; 27;
    Writing at speed: inappropriate closing of letters; 28; Writing at
    speed: identifying un-closed letters; 29; Writing at speed: spacing
    within words; 30; Writing at speed: spacing between words; 31;
    Playscript project: collecting information; 32; Playscript project:
    recording ideas; 33; Playscript project: improving a draft; 34;
    Playscript project: publishing a playscript; 35; Playscript project:
    evaluation; 36; Information notice project: collecting and organising
    information; 37; Information notice project: organising information;
    38; Information notice project: improving a draft; 39; Information
    notice project: publishing a notice; 40; Information notice project:
    evaluation; Photocopy Masters; Penpals writing mat: right-handers;
    Penpals writing mat: left-handers; Lined sheet (10mm); Joining letter

  11. As I said - all this seems very convoluting.

    I would want to spend a term on teaching joined writing from beginning to end - and that could be in year one or remediating any year with generally 'poor' writing.

    After that, it would just be a case of some independent handwriting practice - for example, writing out a favourite poem or two from print to joined.

    I can't understand why teaching handwriting - or even rehearsing handwriting - seems to be undertaken over several years!
  12. Thanks for the info.

  13. Bumping this up again because I'm trying to find out if any of you have a contact for write dance training. The lady I had exchanged emails with last year seems to have gone off the radar.

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