Kinetic Letters is a handwriting programme for use in primary and secondary schools.
Four main threads of:
• Making bodies stronger,
• Holding the pencil,
• Learning the letters, and
• Flow and fluency
It enables children to develop legible handwriting that is produced quickly and automatically. With the development of automaticity, handwriting becomes a valuable tool and not a hindrance to learning.
The Kinetic Letters® font covers all the letters in the alphabet and is based on a set of rules that have been made as simple as possible to enable fast learning. The order in which letters are taught recognises the cognitive development of children. The programme can be used with any reading programme including phonics. Initially reading and writing are taught separately (as recommended by phonics programmes); later on, reading and writing are combined.
Strength: Writing is a fine finger operation; children must have core body and arm strength to be able to control their fingers precisely.
Pencil hold: The pencil/pen grip must be comfortable to allow writing for long periods (eg exams often last for hours). Pens and pencils with a triangular cross-section assist in developing the correct hold.
Letter formation: The movements to form the letters begin with whole body movements and progress through writing in sand trays to writing on whiteboards and finally writing on paper. In Kinetic Letters®, all the letters and numbers are formed by one of two monkeys, a brave one (Bounce) who goes to the top branch of the tree, and a scared one (Skip) who goes to the lower branch.
Flow and fluency: Letter movements are minimised to help a fast writing style to develop. There are no lead-in strokes (a waste of time and effort).