Is Teaching Printing and Handwriting Still Important In This Digital Age?
Increasingly more students are arriving in our classrooms never having the opportunity to hold a pencil, coloring and cutting with scissors and fine-motor skills are lagging. I have certainly noticed a significant decline since I started teaching 34 years ago. This blog post is meant to address some of these concerns. How often do you hear, “children do not need to know how to print because they will just learn to type.” More research has been done in this area and supports the importance of still learning to print
Importance of Learning to Print – Correlates to Learning to Read
A 2012 study showed that young children who attempted to write letters on a blank piece of paper demonstrated similar brain functionality used by adults when reading and writing. Children who only traced letters or shapes with dotted lines, or those who typed the letter on the computer showed no such effect. Their brain functionality for activating the same skill level was much weaker.
Printing and Writing Results In Better Retention
The video below discusses how printing/writing results in better retention.
Teaching Printing In Relation to Learning Letters and Sounds
The research above confirms the importance of teaching printing in conjunction with learning letters and sounds. There is such a huge connection between learning letters and sounds and printing the letter.
In conclusion, the importance of learning to print should not be overlooked even in this digital age. I believe even more research is going to become available showing the same outcomes. Below I have posted a few printing “Literacy Centers” ideas.
Literacy Games That Promote Fine-Motor and Letter Learning
The game displayed below was one of my student’s favorite Literacy Center games. I place the picture circle graph in a paper plate so the top would not roll off. The students must twist the spinner (great for fine-motor) and print the letter represented by the picture the spinner lands on.
Roll, Count, Move and Print Game
This is a great game to assist in letter learning and printing and also incorporates math. Students roll a die and move their game player accordingly. They must print the letter that represents the sound of the picture they landed and print that letter on the chart provided.
Draw and Print
As a member of the Kinderplans site you have access to 156 alphabet picture cards. The students would draw a picture card and print the letter represented.
CVC Word Printing
As a member of the site you will have access to 45 CVC picture cards. Students can make words as displayed in the photograph below.
More Literacy Center Ideas
In the link below you can find more Literacy Center ideas.