Topic: Homeschool Product Review
One of my son, Joshua's main problems is his handwriting. One of the reasons that he has such difficulty is his asperger's syndrome. His small motor complications really hinder his ability to write. We have used various methods and approaches, but it is still hard for him to write legibly.
I was excited when I heard that we were receiving Zeezok's Presidential Penmanship Italic Style to try out and review on my blog. I was very unknowledgeable regarding Italic Style writing until I did some research. Italic Style printing looks very similar to regular block printing except for two things. It is a little more slanted, and it has a "tail" at the end of some of the letters. Here is a small sample from one of the first grade lessons:
You can see that the t's and f's are a little more curved than they are in regular block print. One of the reasons that they do that, however, is to make a better flow into cursive writing. They take the same letters as above, but connect them. Here is an example of Italic Cursive writing.This is where you'll really see a difference between Italic style and regular cursive.
I was really intrigued by this because I was dreading having to teach Joshua a completely different way to write in a couple of years since he is having such a difficult time with print the way it is. With the Italic style, he will just have to learn how to connect the letters that he already knows how to form.
The Italic style of printing and writing is not unique to just Zeezok, however. Any company can put out an Italic Style writing program. Let me tell you why I think Zeezok's is a step above the rest.
1. I really like the progression. At the very beginning of each weeks writing assignment is the quote that the student will be using for the week. The above are examples of that. The next step is what I really like about their printing pages. The student has to fill in bubbles to learn how to form the letters properly. Here is an example:
As you can see, there is a starting point for each letter so that the student knows where to begin. The writing is also done in very guided balloon type bubbles so that the student knows exactly how a letter is to be formed.
The next day the begin tracing letters like this:
They do that for the rest of the week until Friday when they are given blank lines for them to write the passage without aids.
The cursive writing begins in third grade and has a very similar procedure except they skip the bubble step. After all, the student already knows how to form the basic letter. So, the whole week they tracing, until Friday when they must write the passage on their own.
2. The second thing that I really like about this curriculum is what they are writing. Outside of the Bible, I can think of nothing better than to write some of the greatest quotes from our United States Presidents. Along with the quotes above from George Washington, there are famous sayings from many of our other countries leaders. Many of them are very Christian quotes like the following from John Quincy Adams.
Our Constitution was made
only for a moral and religious
people. ~ John Adams
And the next quote:
In this day and age of political correctness, and trying to rewrite our countries history, this is a great way to instill within our children the religious foundations on which our country was founded.
For those of you who don't like this style of writing, Zeezok has the same Presidential Penmanship program available in other styles of writing such as
- AB (A-Beka) Handwriting Style
- BJ (Bob Jones) Handwriting Style
- DN (D'Nealian) Handwriting Style
- HWOT (Hand Writing Without Tears) Handwriting Style
- ZB (Zaner Bloser) Handwriting Style
You can access examples of the different styles of writing by clicking here.
One small warning. This is not a writing program that teaches the formation of each letter individually. It does not contain letter a practice sheets, letter b practice sheets, etc. The first sample above is from the first week of grade one printing of the Presidential Penmanship program. If your child is not familiar with the basic formation of the different letters, then I would recommend covering them first before buying this program.
I would definitely recommend this program, and, from what I hear from the other Crew members, any of Zeezok's items. Other TOS Crew members reviewed other items and there reviews can be found by clicking here. Zeezok's Presidential Penmanship is priced very reasonably. You can either purchase ebook downloads of the different grade levels (1-6, Junior High, Senior High) for $9.99 each, or purchase the whole set as an ebook download for $39.99. If you would like, you can also order the whole set on CD for $39.99. There are sample pages for all of the Presidential Penmanship styles that you can download and try out before purchasing by clicking here or on any one of the hi-lighted links above. Again this is one of those products that can be used by homeschoolers and non-homeschoolers alike so ~ Happy Home Educating.