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TSL3107 TEACHING WRITING SKILLS IN THE PRIMARY ESL CLASSROOM

LESSON 2: DEVELOPMENTAL STAGES OF WRITING (PART 1)


Mohd Iskandar bin Daud IPGKKB

Mohd Iskandar TSL3107 Lesson 2

Developmental Stages of Writing (Part 1)


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Writing Readiness
Mechanics Penmanship

Mohd Iskandar TSL3107 Lesson 2

Developmental Stages of Writing


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Developmental Stages of Writing

Mohd Iskandar TSL3107 Lesson 2

Writing readiness
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What is writing readiness? The skills and understandings necessary for

minimum success in completing a writing task

Mohd Iskandar TSL3107 Lesson 2

Factors affecting writing readiness


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1. Maturation - sufficient stage of mental and physical development

2. Experience - exposure to basic skills is necessary before complex tasks are tackled. 3. Relevance of materials and methods of instruction - children are more ready to learn materials that meets their needs and fits their already established interests, children are more ready to learn skills of spelling, reading and writing when they are having fun doing 4. Emotional attitude and personal adjustment - Emotional stress blocks readiness for learning especially those resulting from unmet needs, overprotection, rejection in the home, previous experience of school failure, and other home difficulties.
Mohd Iskandar TSL3107 Lesson 2

Building Learning Readiness


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Begins before the child even enters school: The parents should provide books, drawing, reading, and

writing materials at home. The children should have knowledge about books, pictures, and rudiments of writing. From childhood through school, children should be exposed to skills both for their immediate usefulness and for their preparation for new learning.

Mohd Iskandar TSL3107 Lesson 2

Building Learning Readiness (cont)


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Building learning readiness necessitates the following

steps: 1. Analyze the skills, understanding and knowledge required in studying a given material. 2. Use diagnostic pre-tests and other devices to determine the level each prospective learner possesses (the prerequisite skills, understanding and knowledge as well as the specific areas of strengths and weaknesses) 3. Design the instructional programmed to match the individual needs and abilities of each learner 4. Build up the fine motor skills

Mohd Iskandar TSL3107 Lesson 2

Building fine motor skills


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In order for a child to write meaningfully, he/she must first build

up their fine motor skills. The skills along the path to writing are as follows:

Scribbling with crayons - put plenty of paper and writing materials in writing areas at home Making circles and other basic shapes - Point out shapes in the room, use stencils Gaining more control of small muscles Activities like squeezing, pinching , cutting, lacing and stringing, tracing, etc Making representational drawings get the child to explain the drawing Beginning to recognize letters - Refer to his/her name written on a card, Pick out letters they know, play Bingo, etc Consolidating letter recognition - label the room, finding and naming letters, etc

Mohd Iskandar TSL3107 Lesson 2

Building fine motor skills (cont)


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How to help writing readiness of a child? (cont) Begins to recognize written names and some words - picking out known words, notice similarities and differences in words Realizes the permanency of words (r-u-n always spells run) - Read familiar books with only one or two lines on a page, Notice word labels in the room Begins to imitate letters - provide a well-stocked writing area, provide word and picture cards, provide letter cards and stencils, provide chalk and a chalkboard, etc Writes name - model writing his/her name and get him/her to copy it, Write other names if they know how Writes other words - a journal, stories, etc Improves through practice and positive feedback - Write letters to family members, write rhymes, reminders for parents, etc

Encourage all efforts to write! **


Mohd Iskandar TSL3107 Lesson 2

The mechanics of writing


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Def - Mechanics is the term we use to describe the

technical aspects of writing, such as spelling, punctuation, capitalization, etc If a piece of writing is not mechanically well-written hard to figure out what is trying to be said, seen as poorly written, reflects the writers attitude and may be cognitive level too Good mechanics make a story easy to read, and that will attract more readers. See example:

Mohd Iskandar TSL3107 Lesson 2

The mechanics of writing


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Memorable Students they are the memorable students in any class they

participate fully in any mischief they see no point in volunteering for extra jobs they delight in distracting their classmates they take no pleasure in learning they are never satisfied
Not only is the above example difficult to read

because of the lack of punctuation and capitalization, but it also impossible to understand the meaning of it
Mohd Iskandar TSL3107 Lesson 2

The mechanics of writing


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With punctuation, it the same passage can be read this way:

Memorable Students They are the memorable students. In any class, they participate fully. In any mischief, they see no point. In volunteering for extra jobs, they delight. In distracting their classmates, they take no pleasure. In learning, they are never satisfied.

OR
They are the memorable students in any class. They participate

fully in any mischief. They see no point in volunteering for extra jobs. They delight in distracting their classmates. They take no pleasure in learning. They are never satisfied.
Mohd Iskandar TSL3107 Lesson 2

The mechanics of writing


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So are these memorable students good students or bad

students? Based on the original text, we have no way of knowing. Can you see how important mechanics are to meaning? Some basic mechanics of writing: Sentences

To put it simply, a sentence is a complete thought or idea

Punctuation marks such as periods (.), question marks (?), exclamation points (!), commas (,), apostrophes (), quotation marks (), semi-colons (;), and colons (:) When used correctly, they make writing look more organized and easier to read and understand
Mohd Iskandar TSL3107 Lesson 2

The mechanics of writing


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Paragraphing

A paragraph is a group of sentences that all revolve around the same topic or idea Huge paragraphs are hard to follow. It is easier to read, both from a comprehension and a physical standpoint, when text is broken up into smaller paragraphs with empty spaces in between The general rule is, you should start a new paragraph every time you start talking about something new The most important thing to remember about tense is to choose one tense and stick to it. This is another problem some beginning writers have. Many kids, when learning to write in school, switch tenses like crazy. SVA - different forms of every verb that go with different subjects, dont get confused

Grammar (Tense, Subject-Verb Agreement, etc)

Mohd Iskandar TSL3107 Lesson 2

The mechanics of writing


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Homonyms words which sound the same, but are spelled differently and have different meanings. another lovely feature of the confusing English language

Eg: Your/Youre, There/Their/Theyre, Its/Its, To/Too/Two, Then/Than, Lose/Loose commonly confused


Reading over what youve written with a critical eye, judging on not just content, but mechanical correctness as well, is crucial. It helps you catch and correct your mistakes before readers see them

Practice (proofreading)

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Proofreading practice
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Kevin Howie Brian AJ and Nick piled onto the bus, they had just

finished there concert that night in Chicago and was on theyre way to grab a bite to eat than they would be driving on to the next city Milwaukee. Wear should we eat? asks Howie his body jerking backward as the bus lurched away from the venue. How about McDonalds? AJ suggested smiling. You always want two go too Mickey Ds AJ complained Kevin cant we eat healthy four once? Howie agrees with Kevin but the to were quickly overruled by the other three who insisted on fast food, before they knew it the bus was pulling up in front of the familiar golden arches. Oh my God its the backstreet boys screamed the gurl at the counter when they walked in to order. I love U guys so much your my favorite band, will U sign a song 4 me? Sure Nick agreed and breaks into dont wanna loose you now, the other guys came in on theyre parts but the girl was squealing louder then they could sing
Mohd Iskandar TSL3107 Lesson 2

Answer (50 errors)


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Kevin, Howie, Brian, AJ, and Nick piled onto the bus. They had just finished

their concert that night in Chicago and were on their way to grab a bite to eat. Then they would be driving on to the next city, Milwaukee. Where should we eat? asked Howie, his body jerking backward as the bus lurched away from the venue. How about McDonalds? AJ suggested, smiling. You always want to go to Mickey Ds, J, complained Kevin. Cant we eat healthy for once? Howie agreed with Kevin, but the two were quickly overruled by the other three, who insisted on fast food. Before they knew it, the bus was pulling up in front of the familiar golden arches. Oh my God, its the Backstreet Boys! screamed the girl at the counter when they walked in to order. I love you guys so much; youre my favorite band! Will you sign a song for me? Sure, Nick agreed and broke into Dont Wanna Lose You Now. The other guys came in on their parts, but the girl was squealing louder than they could sing

Mohd Iskandar TSL3107 Lesson 2

Penmanship
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Def - Penmanship is the technique of writing with the hand

using a writing instrument The various generic and formal historical styles of writing are called hands, whilst an individual personal style of penmanship is referred to as handwriting Motor control - Handwriting requires the motor coordination of multiple joints in the hand, wrist, elbow and shoulder to form letters and to arrange them on the page. Holding the pen and guiding it across paper depends mostly upon sensory information from skin, joints and muscles of the hand and this adjusts movement to changes in the friction between pen and paper
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Penmanship
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With practice and familiarity, handwriting

becomes highly automated using motor programs stored in motor memory Compared to other complex motor skills handwriting is far less dependent on a moment-tomoment visual guidance

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Reasons for good penmanship


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In the United States each year: the health of at least 1 in 10 Americans is endangered by the poor handwriting of their physicians. up to $95,000,000 in tax refunds are not delivered because of unreadable tax-forms. $200,000,000 in time and money is lost because poor handwriting results in such problems as confused and inefficient employees, phone calls made to wrong or non-existent numbers, and letters and packages delivered to incorrect addresses -- or not delivered at all.

The repercussions of poor handwriting aren't limited to the

workplace; they begin in the classroom - repeated research has shown that even when teachers are told not to take off points for bad handwriting, poor handwriting results in lower grades -- as much as a full letter grade lower -- for similar or identical work.
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Poor penmanship
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physicians handwriting is notoriously bad, and with the increased importance of prescription medicines in treating diseases of every sort, poor penmanship increases the probability of fatal medication errors

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Teaching handwriting
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Effective handwriting instruction should focus on the three

components of handwriting - letter formation (form and slant), size, and spacing. When teaching handwriting, teachers should focus on one component at a time -- first, letter formation; then, size; and then, spacing. The form and slant of specific letters will depend on the style of handwriting being taught. Whatever style you're teaching, however, children first must learn the starting and stopping point of each letter. That can be accomplished by having children trace the letters with their index fingers before they begin writing.

Mohd Iskandar TSL3107 Lesson 2

Teaching handwriting
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Posture and paper position also are important to ensure

correct letter formation and slant. Students should sit upright with both feet flat on the floor, placing the paper at a 45 degree angle toward the writing-arm side of the body and tilting it to conform to the position of the writing arm's forearm.

Mohd Iskandar TSL3107 Lesson 2

Teaching handwriting
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Paper position and correct posture


Mohd Iskandar TSL3107 Lesson 2

Teaching handwriting
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Letter size -- more accurately, letter proportion -- is fairly

consistent across handwriting styles. Similarly-shaped letters should be the same height. For example, small letters (a, c, e, i, m, n, o, r, s, u, v, w, x, z) should be half the size of ascenders (b, d, h, k, l, t) and descenders (g, j, p, q, y). Capital letters should be about the same height as ascenders. Proper proportion can be taught using handwriting paper with a dotted middle line.

Mohd Iskandar TSL3107 Lesson 2

Teaching handwriting
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Mohd Iskandar TSL3107 Lesson 2

Teaching handwriting
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Handwriting paper with a dotted middle line.


Mohd Iskandar TSL3107 Lesson 2

Teaching handwriting
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Follow the direction of arrows when writing letters and numbers


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Teaching handwriting
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Proper spacing includes both spacing between letters and

spacing between words. The space between each letter in a word should be the same. The space between each word also should be consistent. Students can use their pinkies to measure the correct distance between words. Proper grip of the pen or pencil is another important aspect of good handwriting. Instruct students to hold the pen or pencil close to the writing tip with the thumb and index fingers. The middle finger should be curved under the writing utensil, with the utensil resting lightly on the area between the tip and first knuckle. The fourth finger and pinky should be curved in toward the palm.

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Teaching handwriting
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Proper pencil grip


Mohd Iskandar TSL3107 Lesson 2

Common Things that Contribute to Poor Handwriting


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Posture - sprawling on desk, holding head up with one

hand, knees not under desk & aligned with paper Pencil Grip awkward, incorrect fingers used to hold pencil Writing on the lines - writing in the space in top margin, writing along the bottom edge of the paper under last line, not writing on the lines Starting at the margins - not starting at the left margin, indent too large (should only be the width of a finger) Spacing - too much space between words like in primary (should only be the width of the letter m)

Mohd Iskandar TSL3107 Lesson 2

Common Things that Contribute to Poor Handwriting


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Speed - slow (lack focus, no continuous writing), slow

(needs to think of letter formation while writing), lack of speed means that student cannot keep up with transcribing notes from the board (constantly behind), too fast (writing becomes illegible) Neatness - smudged, blotchy, irregular letter size Writing tools - pencil not sharpened well enough, pencil lead is too hard (writing is very light & hard to read), pencil lead is too soft (smudges), writing tools not at hand (lost, misplaced - time wasted)

Mohd Iskandar TSL3107 Lesson 2

Cursive vs print
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What is cursive writing? Joined-up writing, joint writing, linking, running writing, or handwriting is any style of penmanship in which the symbols of the language are written in a conjoined and/or flowing manner Generally for the purpose of making writing faster The terms cursive or script are popular in the U.S., known as Joinedup writing in the U.K., double writing in Australia and linking in New Zealand. The term handwriting is common in the United States, Canada, Australia and New Zealand Quite distinct from the so-called block letter, print-

script or printing method of writing, in which the letters of a word are unconnected
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Types of cursive writing


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D'Nealian Getty-Dubay Zaner-Bloser

Palmer Method

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Types of cursive writing


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ManuscriptModern (DNealian)

CursiveModern (DNealian)

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Types of cursive writing


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ManuscriptItalic (Portland, Getty/Dubay)

LinkedItalic (Portland, Getty/Dubay)

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Types of cursive writing


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ManuscriptZaner-Bloser

CursiveZaner-Bloser

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Types of cursive writing


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ManuscriptPalmer

CursivePalmer

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Reasons to teach cursive handwriting


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1. Learning cursive writing helps students develop reading, communication, and fine motor skills

There is a direct link between the process of learning to write in cursive and the ability to read fluently. Several studies also suggest that cursive writing improves the fluidity of thought in written communication and helps to develop students fine motor skills, including hand-eye coordination

2. Students must be able to read cursive handwriting

Not only will these students struggle with cursive writing - they cant read it either. Studying for a test is difficult when students cant read their own notes. Scholars point out that without instruction in cursive handwriting, students wont be able to read historical documents such as the Declaration of Independence

Mohd Iskandar TSL3107 Lesson 2

Reasons to teach cursive handwriting


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3. Cursive writing receives higher marks.

Multiple studies have found that neatly written papers receive higher marks than papers with messy handwriting Some researchers also suggest that papers written in cursive receive higher marks than those written in block, or manuscript, style

4. Students can write in cursive faster than they can print 5. Illegible writing creates problems for society.

Undeliverable tax refunds, letters and packages sent to wrong addresses, and employee mistakes in the various areas

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Lesson and activities


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Sample lesson Sample activities

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Tutorial
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Divide your class in a group of three and do one of the

following tasks: 1. Discuss in class the ways how the mechanics of writing can be taught in class 2. Discuss how to teach penmanship to beginning learners. 3. Study a sample of poor handwriting. Original sample would be good.

Identify the problem. Discuss techniques to be taught to overcome the problem Present your findings / solutions / suggestions to the class.

Exchange notes and compile them in your folio


Mohd Iskandar TSL3107 Lesson 2

ISL
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Read Chitravelu, N.et.at (2005). ELT

Methodolology: Principles and Practice, Selangor: Fajar Bakti. Make notes of what you read Compile in your folio

Mohd Iskandar TSL3107 Lesson 2