Some ideas:TriciaMR wrote:Okay, writing is not my dd's best subject, but she has improved greatly in the last 3 weeks. But then, she can get so sloppy, to the point of being illegible. She has asked several times, "Does it really matter if I do this right (or get this right)?" I've said, "Yes, it does." (I also always make her correct her incorrect answers.)
I've talked about math and how if you were an engineer and made a mistake designing a car, you could hurt or kill someone. I've talked about being a doctor and having neat handwriting so the pharmacist can read your handwriting and get the right medicine (the wrong medicine could kill you). We've talked about how God wants us to do our very best.
I've told her that if she doesn't write neatly I'm going to make her re-write her papers. But, then I think, "Am I being too hard on her? She is only 7. I probably didn't care about any of this stuff when I was 7 either." I don't want to make her a "perfectionist" (believe it or not, she does have a little of that in her, in spite of the sloppy writing and messy room), but I often feel that she isn't really doing her best work.
Trying to find out what other moms and dads do.
*If she is just not ready for cursive writing, take that into account. I know the curriculum you are using teaches it now, but that doesn’t mean it has to be done now.
*Yes, it is important to do our work neatly. Maybe it would work to just let her "practice just one assignment again". Instead of making her do everything all the way over, encourage her to choose one assignment to Practice it Again. Don't try to fix everything all at one time.
My girls take dance and have to practice it again. Their teacher gently says “let’s practice this again”.
And yes, let your 7 y.o choose which one assignment even though she will choose the shortest assignment. That's ok.
*It is my experience that trying to get a 7 year old to think too far in the future—well uhm…it just doesn’t work. It is too abstract for a young mind to think that way. Look for ways to give her a concrete incentive that has meaning to her. How about if you encourage her to practice her handwriting pretty so that she can be ready to send a pretty card to her cousins when they are in the hospital? (Hi Uncle Mike’s kids) Or to be able to write a letter to Grandma. Something that has a positive meaning to her might work better than an abstract concept that is taught in a negative fashion.
*make sure that you are providing proper physical elements so that she isn't getting too tired while writing. In other words, get a pencil grip if she needs one. Make sure she is sitting properly at a desk/table that is the right height for her size. (Kitchen tables are *not* always the best thing for that.) Sometimes we overlook those real simple solutions like that when it comes to penmanship and writing.
hang in there --- I think all teachers have these learning moments when learning how to teach. I even see this kind of thing with one of the rookie preschool teachers at my dd’s preschool. The multiple decade veteran teacher and I just look at each other and smile. You’re doing a good job, Trish! Laugh gently at yourself knowing that I've been there, done that too :)
p.s. doctors are known for sloppy handwriting. <grin>