Lots of people think they have bad handwriting. But for some children, just producing handwriting is a struggle, much less making it legible.

If your child:

  • Writes illegibly
  • Produces very messy or uncontrolled writing
  • Has trouble staying within the lines on the paper
  • Has trouble making smooth, fluid movements with the pencil
  • Complains of pain or tired hand, fingers, or wrist when writing
  • Presses too hard or not enough when writing, or grips the pencil too tightly or loosely
  • Writes extremely fast or slowly
  • Doesn’t want to write, or gives up easily
  • Reverses letters
  • Makes letters too big or too small
  • Has difficulty learning to copy lines, shapes, or letters

He or she may be struggling with writing and keeping up with classmates.

Handwriting is a fine motor skill, and children with handwriting struggles may have other fine motor, visual-motor, or perceptual challenges as well. But handwriting is a particular skill with a big role in school and the rest of life, so getting help for a child with handwriting difficulties can make a lot of life go better.

How can I help my child who is struggling with handwriting?

Here at CTS, our occupational therapists are trained to help children improve their handwriting using a number of different techniques, including the Handwriting Without Tears program, looking at all the factors that may be part of the handwriting difficulty, strengthening hand and wrist muscles, and ergonomic and sensorimotor strategies.