Young children need motivation to write. Parents can provide a variety of writing tools to encourage writing. Here are a few suggestions…
You can try writing the alphabets in highlighter pens like the one below. It is still tracing but after the child writes over them, the pencil marks will cover over it making it seem your child managed to do it freehand.
There are also alphabet stencils that can encourage freehand alphabet writing. Alphabet stencils are easily available in neighbourhood stationery shops or at Popular bookstores. They’re made of hard plastic, easy to clean, comes in various fonts and sizes to suit the smallest of hands/fingers. Some stencil templates even support cursive writing.
If you’re looking for more fun stencils for younger children, this is a good buy for you to consider. It’s Scholastic’s Alphabet Stencils and it is available online @ Amazon.com.
Alphabet Stencils are excellent tools for use in developing the motor and visual perception skills needed to form and distinguish letters. The following information is found in the guide that comes with the Alphabet Stencil kit.
The Alphabet Stencil kit contains uppercase letter stencils and a corresponding animal, person, or object stencil for each letter plus a crayon pack. The stencils are designed to meet the following key instructional goals:
naming alphabet letters
writing uppercase letters
distinguishing confusing letters
identifying letter & letter sounds
developing automaticity (fluency) with alphabet-recognition skills
The stencil kit is ideal for small group instruction when you are working with selected children who have not yet achieved mastery with these basic skills. Be sure to explicity teach the letter name, sound, and formation. For example, say, "This is the letter s. The letter s stands for the /s/ sound. Watch as I trace the letter with my finger." To accelerate the children’s progress, have them say the letter or the sound of the letter as they practice writing the letter (e.g., /b/, /b/, /f/, as they write the letter b, b, f).
You can also consider using other interesting mediums for your child to write on… like whiteboard markers, now they even have blackboard markers too! Use a paintbrush to paint letter shapes.. (brushes are also good practice for pencil work… ), chalk (if you have a chalkboard) or even with oil pastels.
Make a rainbow with oil pastel colours on a drawing paper, cover up everything with black oil pastel. Then scratch on the paper with a thin stick and you can see the rainbow colours as you make lines of the alphabets with it.
Another simple at home way is to print using your computer these hollow alphabet tracer. Children can use various writing tools/mediums to trace freehand around the shapes of each alphabet. You may encourage child to change colours after writing/tracing over the letter each time and you then form your own rainbow writer.
Don’t wanna waste paper, printing over and over again? Just laminate them, and voila! It can now be used for tracing with markers… over… and over… and over again. It can be binded into an alphabet writing booklet or pasted on the walls of the child’s room like an alphabet wall frieze.
Many possibilities to explore! And the possibilities are endless.