This blog post on creative cursive practice was originally written August 27, 2015. It was updated with more creative cursive writing solutions as of February 27, 2024.
One thing I wanted to share as a school-based occupational therapist is the use of creative cursive strategies to support cursive writing. So often, OT practitioners hear from parents and teachers that a student can’t write their name in cursive, when this is the only functional form of cursive writing they’ve had to retain. I’ve seen time and time again, where students are taught cursive letter formation one time, and then they are expected to use and retain that formation. One summer break (or even a weekend) and the formation pattern for the cursive letter is lost. Or, a student struggles with handwriting in general and cursive is a back up plan used as a handwriting accommodation. While this is completely appropriate for some students, if you don’t use it and practice it, you definitely lose it.
Using creative writing strategies to support letter learning is key to letter formation. This creative cursive journal fits the bill for practicing cursive in different and fun ways. These strategies are just some of the cursive writing tips we have on the site.
If you are starting to consider how to teach cursive writing, then having a toolbox of strategies in your mind is helpful. Creative cursive activities supports the motor plan needed to form cursive letters in handwriting automatically.
Learn to Write Cursive with a Cursive Writing Journal
To use the Cursive Handwriting Journal:
- Encourage your child to use the written letter as a guide to correctly form the pipe cleaner letter.
- You can create a permanently formed fuzzy letter by adding a dab of glue at the connecting parts of the pipe cleaner letters.
- Then, trace the pipe cleaner with your finger to further practice cursive letter formation.
Get your Cursive Handwriting Journal and Creative Cursive Tips printable and have fun learning cursive in a creative way!
More ways to learn to write cursive and creative cursive handwriting activities you will enjoy:
- Napkin Letter Formation Art
- Textured Cursive Letters
- Writing Positioning for Cursive
- Fizzy Dough Letters
- Cursive Writing Lesson Plan
Creative Cursive Tips and Tools for Learning Cursive Handwriting
When I worked in a variety of upper elementary and middle school settings, cursive writing came up a lot. Some practice activities work well for some students and others work for other students. Having a variety of tools in mind is nice because I’ve found that you can try things once that don’t work for learning cursive takes a lot of work…and practice.
1. Cursive Writing Apps- Use tablets or touchscreen devices equipped with stylus pens for interactive cursive practice apps. These apps often provide engaging activities and games to make learning cursive more enjoyable for children. An example is “Cursive Writing Wizard” available on both iOS and Android platforms. Here is my list of favorite occupational therapy apps, which includes handwriting apps.
2. Cursive Art – Combine cursive practice with art by incorporating calligraphy techniques. Encourage learners to create artistic pieces using cursive writing, such as writing quotes or poems in cursive and decorating them with illustrations or borders. I love this handwriting art activity, and kids do too.
3. Multi-Sensory Cursive- Engage multiple senses by practicing cursive writing in different mediums, such as sand trays, shaving cream, or finger paint. This tactile experience can enhance muscle memory and retention. These multisensory letter mats are printed version, but a similar activity could be done with cursive.
4. Outdoor Writing Activities- Take cursive practice outdoors by using sidewalk chalk to write letters and words on pavement or by tracing letters in the sand at the beach or in a sandbox. This change of environment can make the learning experience more enjoyable and memorable.
5. Music and Movement– Integrate music and movement into cursive practice by playing instrumental music in the background and encouraging learners to write cursive letters in rhythm with the music. You can also incorporate gross motor movements, such as writing large cursive letters with arm movements in the air.
6. Cursive Handwriting Games– Create games that involve cursive writing, such as scavenger hunts where participants search for objects with cursive words written on them or relay races where teams write cursive letters or words on a whiteboard or chalkboard. I also love to use handwriting games to practice specific letter formations.
7. Letter Building– Provide materials like wooden blocks or clay and challenge learners to build cursive letters with them. The Handwriting Without Tears program offers This hands-on activity helps reinforce letter shapes and spatial awareness.
8. Storytelling– Kids love fun stories! If you do a writing prompt where students build on one another’s ideas. We love using this strategy for working on cursive because they can read their peer’s cursive. This not only provides practice and letter recognition skills with cursive writing. It also fosters creativity and narrative skills when writing in cursive.
9. Pen Pal Program– Pair learners with pen pals who communicate through handwritten letters in cursive. This real-world application of cursive writing can motivate learners to practice and improve their skills.
10. Collaborative Projects– Initiate collaborative cursive writing projects, such as creating a class mural or poster where each student contributes a cursive letter or word. This fosters teamwork and a sense of accomplishment. Our middle school journal prompts are a good place to start.
These out-of-the-box cursive practice ideas aim to make learning engaging, enjoyable, and effective for learners of all ages.