If you are a teenager reading this article, it’s more than likely that you have to do a lot of writing for your high school assignments.
Bad handwriting not only makes it difficult for the examiner to understand and check the submitted paperwork, but also sets a bad initial impression that could result in an overall low grade.
Handwriting generally appears untidy if the letters are too big, too small or are written unevenly. Even if you write letters with the same size but with uneven spacing, the handwriting seems immature or untidy.
Often bad handwriting can be subconsciously judged by the examiner as “unintelligent” or “lazy”. Therefore, it essential for teenagers to improve their handwriting.
Reasons for bad handwriting?
Messy or bad handwriting could be due to several reasons. Firstly, it could be due to the fact that the child was not taught to write or correctly in the early years.
Alternatively, the problem could be a little more severe, perhaps the child has been diagnosed with symptoms of dyspraxia, dysgraphia or dyslexia. However, with consistent effort, it is possible for teenagers to improve their handwriting.
How to improve handwriting in teenagers?
To answer this question, we’ve compiled 7 actionable to improve your teen’s handwriting.
1. Analyze your handwriting
Begin by writing a paragraph on any topic that interests you. If you don’t feel that creative, copy a passage from a book or a newspaper. Once you have done this, observe to see if you have loops and curves or is it primarily stiff straight lines. Are there hard straight lines or do they blend together? The angle at which you write is also important. If there is a little slant it’s quite alright, but too much of it can make reading difficult.
The other important thing to pay attention to is the spacing between the letters and the words. Too much, too little or unequal spacing can make the handwriting difficult to read.
2. Choose a writing object
Choose a pencil or pen that you are most comfortable to write with. To do this, you might need to hunt for one that works for you based on its width, flow of ink and your grip. A pencil is good for initial practice, but as a teenager, eventually, you will have to choose a pen that works well, with a consistent ink flow, and does not require excessive pressure to write.
3. Relax your grip
A nice relaxed grip is one of the most important things required to improve your handwriting. Many teenagers tend to clutch the pen too tightly while writing without realizing it, which results in bad handwriting. While holding the pen, don’t overflex the wrist and hand muscles. And your fingernails shouldn’t be white from squeezing the pen’s barrel.
Grips are generally classified as a dynamic tripod, dynamic quadruped, lateral tripod, lateral quadruped, based on the number of fingers used and their placement.
4. Enhance motor skills
By increasing the dexterity of your fingers and hand you get more control over the pencil or pen. Fine motor skills help to improve writing endurance. Involve yourself (or your teen) in household tasks that involve palm, finger and wrist muscles. For example, as a teenager you could use screwdrivers, scissors or other similar household tools that can strengthen the muscles of the hand. Many people often think that writing is mostly everything to do about the fingers, but that is not always the case. In order to have good handwriting, you also need to have strong upper body strength and control, especially in the shoulders and forearms.
Strong muscular strength of the arm will help you get a firm, close, stable and accurate grip of the pen, thereby improving your handwriting.
5. Write on handwriting worksheets
A lot of handwriting worksheets are available online. These can also be used as warm-up sheets for your hand muscles, and can help you write confident, clear characters. Practicing capital and lowercase letters, words, and sentences on these worksheets on a daily basis can help improve your handwriting speed and style. You can find worksheets for any writing style, including those available to help you improve your cursive writing.
6. Begin writing on a ruled page
Once you are ready, begin writing on a ruled page since it gives you a guideline to maintain the width and height of your letters. If you are writing a letter and need to do so on a blank page, place a rule notebook paper underneath to view the lines as guidelines to maintain even writing. Also, during formal writing, never write directly on a hard surface. Rather, maintain a “padding” by placing another piece of paper underneath. This cushioning effect also helps in writing better.
7. Handwriting activities
- Accurate posture: Before writing ensure that your back is straight and the table and paper are at waist height with your feet flat on the ground
- Start journaling: Set aside time each day to write your thoughts, the day’s activities or interesting anecdotes slowly and mindfully to improve your handwriting
- Develop your own style: Don’t attempt to imitate someone else’s way of writing or style, rather work with your own handwriting and gradually work your way up to improve your own natural style
- Challenge yourself: Ask yourself the core reason why you want to improve your handwriting because that will help you stay on track for improvement
- Understand your objective: After you write each paragraph examine it to see how you did and where you could have done better
- Find the flaws: Here’s where you will have to be your own critic. Identify irregularities and non-uniformities in your writing and make conscious mental notes to ensure that you work on them when you write the next paragraph
- Find some inspirational writing: Look for a piece of handwriting that you admire and pick up features such as slants, or a cursive writing style that you like and want to gradually incorporate in your handwriting