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Handwriting Without Tears Reviews

This program uses fun, entertaining, and educationally sound instructional methods to teach handwriting to all students: pre-k through cursive. The lessons require minimal preparation time. According to publisher’s materials, the program “follows a developmental teaching sequence by teaching easy letters first, beginning with capitals and then teaching letters in groups of similar stroke sequence. When students master easier skills, they are better prepared to learn more difficult groups—those prone to reversals or having diagonal lines. As a result, children gain mastery and confidence more quickly and can focus on the content of their work rather than the mechanics of letter formation.” The workbook cost per child is under $10. Supplemental materials, including clothing, can be purchased at various price points.

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  1. Handwriting Without Tears Review by Jessica Rawlins
    Grades Used: 4th

    HWT has brought joy back to our handwriting time!!!!

  2. Handwriting Without Tears Review by Wendy
    Pros: My son is writing very neatly!
    Cons: We didn't really use the wooden pieces.
    Grades Used: K

    I liked the program personally. It shows the kids quick steps to draw and reinforces it with wooden pieces. My son really liked using those at first, but then just wanted to make shapes and it became more of a distraction. The chalkboard idea was GREAT and definitely helped me see if there was anything he needed work on. He is writing very well and we’ve had several compliments!

  3. Handwriting Without Tears Review by Tawnee
    Pros: Easy to Use. Good Price.
    Cons: Paper/Workbooks
    Grades Used: 1st and 2nd

    We started using HWOT for 1st grade during our Kindergarten year since my dd was already ahead on handwriting from her PreK years. She liked it instantly and did great. The Rock Tap and Learn CD is fun and the kids love it. My little ones loved the songs too.

    We art just finishing 2nd grade and it has been good. We are to be starting cursive soon and, though the cursive looks a little funny to me, I think we will stick with it because we have had good success. The lessons are quick, it is easy to teach, and my daughter has done well with it.

    The cons are that any workbooks, printable worksheet or other thing available online typically does not have the HWOT lines and therefore can be challenging. My dd has struggled with writing in notebooks trying to figure out which lines to use. Though I have purchase extra paper and loaded up binders, if i print out a notebook page or activity sheet online typically the writing has the standard 3 lines (one dotted in the middle) and she struggles with her letter formation a little.

    Otherwise, great program. Easy to teach and use.

  4. Handwriting Without Tears Review by Pam
    Pros: It was very quick lessons; quick and easy to go through
    Cons: my daughter called it handwriting with tears, although her handwriting improved immensely
    Grades Used: 2nd

    We used the workbook this year as we saw a friend use it with good results. My daughter did it but wasn’t thrilled about it – although it did improve her handwriting quite a bit.

    I think I will have to use some of the other tools they have. We saw them at the NCHE conference and my daughter loved playing with all of the hands-on things available – magnets, chalk board, sponges – so I might just have to invest in some of these other things to help her think as she is writing.

    If I am constantly on her about neat writing she will do it – so I know she can. I just don’t want to constantly be on her for neat handwriting – there are so many other more important things to encourage her to do. She does many numbers and some letters backwards.

    I have a 3 yr old – so I could start using the magnets with her – might just need to invest in those. My 2nd grader would use them too. Maybe it would continue to help her process the letters & numbers individually.

    She’s an avid reader & very intelligent – so I’m not sure why we have an issue with backwards letters & numbers.

  5. Handwriting Without Tears Review by Sheryl
    Pros: good manipulatives, easy to grasp
    Cons: None
    Grades Used: Pre K, K, 1, 2

    We have enjoyed the hands-on tools (chalkboard, letter shapes, audio CD). The mini chalk and mini pencils have been used over and over again. I have used it with one son and I am currently using it with another.

  6. Handwriting Without Tears Review by Connie
    Pros: It helps kids learn to write in a way they can understand.
    Cons: Have to order it online.
    Grades Used: K-2

    My daughter loves this program. She gets a few minutes to work on handwriting and just goes right through the pages. It helps her learn in a way that makes more sense to her than traditional methods.

  7. Handwriting Without Tears Review by Shera DeMay
    Pros: childern are not overwhelmed- short, easy lessons; very fun; no teacher book needed; VERY affordable!
    Cons: none
    Grades Used: K-4

    My oklder girls had actually started with some other handwriting programs and didn’t like them. They’d get overwhelmed at how long some of the lessons were. When we found and tried this, they actually looked forward to the lessons! We have used them with all 4 of our children now with lots of success! I highly reccomend this program.

  8. Handwriting Without Tears Review by Cheri Burt
    Pros: easy to use; multi-sensory; inexpensive
    Cons: different than what most of use grew up doing
    Grades Used: Kindergarten & 1st

    I am currently using this with my 1st and 2nd grader. They are both using the 1st grade book. We acquired these from a friend so we only have the mat and wooden pieces but my kids love taking turns building our letters of day. It makes the formation of the letter very concrete for them. I have seen a vast improvement from the beginning of the year.

  9. Handwriting Without Tears Review by Holly Pixley
    Pros: Quick Lessons, Easy to use
    Grades Used: Kindergarten

    We love HWT! My son learned to print his letters so quickly. He loved the simple sayings that they use to remember how to write each letter. This series gave him the confidence to write words and sentences.

    I love that it can be used for both left and right hand students.

    I purchased the teachers edition in addition to the student books. I am glad that I did. Even though it is written for a classroom teacher it is helpful to read to understand how to begin teaching handwriting.

  10. Handwriting Without Tears Review by Rosanne Rankine
    Pros: Very easy to use
    Cons: Different from how I learned
    Grades Used: Preschool and up

    We switched to HWT from another program because my son was crying about doing handwriting. Since the switch my son’s handwriting has improved leaps and bounds. My preschooler loves it! My stepdaughter didn’t learn cursive at public school. When we told her that she would learn this year as a 7th grader, she wasn’t happy. She likes the ease of the program, has beautiful cursive and doesn’t mind doing it at all!

  11. Handwriting Without Tears Review by Robyn
    Pros: easy to use, easy to form letters
    Cons: not the prettiest cursive script
    Grades Used: K-3

    I’ve used one handwriting curriculum and this is it! It was good for my older two, but even better for my child who has some fine motor issues. The letters are easy to form and not much writing on a page. Success is almost ensured! This unique style also makes it very difficult to reverse letters. My kids really did not struggle with reversals. My younger boys have worked through all the printing books. My older two worked through 2 cursive books. I also used the wooden letter pieces with my younger two and they loved them. Handwriting was such a drag when I was a kid, and really with this curriculum my children never complained.

  12. Handwriting Without Tears Review by Angie Berrios
    Pros: Easy to use, do not need the parent guidebook
    Grades Used: 3rd cursive

    My son loves this workbook. If I give him a choice of what to do first he always picks his cursive lesson. It is very easy to use and fun.

  13. Handwriting Without Tears Review by April
    Pros: Easy to use, enjoyable, inexpensive
    Grades Used: 1-4th

    This is a great handwriting book. It helped my daughter out because she has dysgraphia. It allows her to write as big as she needs to which she loves to write big.
    My other daughter just loves to do handwriting now and soars right through it.

  14. Handwriting Without Tears Review by JulieCC
    Pros: inexpensive; very effective; great publisher support
    Cons: cursive looks funny at first
    Grades Used: K-5

    I absolutely adore HWT! As a parent of a child who has had occupational (fine motor) therapy for many years, this is a godsend!

    The method is very effective and multi-sensory. You can easily pick and choose which items to use.

    They have an incredible resource of PDF worksheets, helps, fun pages, and other resources.

    Very easy for a homeschooling parent to use! The auditory and visual prompts are wonderful for a global learner!

  15. Handwriting Without Tears Review by Alison Valentine
    Pros: good value, quick lessons
    Grades Used: cursive, cursive success

    We used this last year with 3rd and 5th – they both started out with the cursive book, my 3rd grader excelled, having had NO cursive, she now has beautiful cursive handwriting, thanks only to HWT. I missed the window with my 5th grader, PS did him no favors in the handwriting department! Both are using the ‘cursive success’ book this year: 4th and 6th. 4th grader doesn’t really need it but actually enjoys copying even more beautifully, it then doesn’t make the 6th grader feel so badly that he’s still having handwriting practice. When he’s doing the exercises in the book, his writing is vastly improved but he reverts back to printing for general work – he had to learn to type so that I could read his reports! I love the speed of these lessons and the quick learning curve; I remain hopeful that eventually my 6th grader will be willing to use cursive in general work!

  16. Handwriting Without Tears Review by Julia James
    Pros: Simple, easy to use, fun music
    Grades Used: Pre K, K, 1st

    I love this curriculum. We bought the following pieces for Pre-K: the wood blocks with mat, large alphabet cards, magnetic tracer, mini chalkboard, teacher’s guide and student workbook. This was so fun! My daughter loved it. The lessons are short but build on each other. We did Mat Man when lessons got mundane. :)

    For Kindergarten we just used the chalkboard and workbook, and she still liked it. We bought the music cd for first grade, and it is fun too. We are learning all the lowercase and she has totally changed her writing she does for fun (on her drawings) to match what she has learned. For 1st grade, I like more practice which we do on the HWT paper.

    I like the teacher’s guide, which details each lesson and includes a schedule to follow if you need it. They also teach pencil grip, posture and each letter formation with tricks to remember. I highly recommend this!

  17. Handwriting Without Tears Review by Crystal T
    Pros: Easy to teach
    Grades Used: K, 1st

    I’m using this for my son and daughter, we love it.

  18. Handwriting Without Tears Review by Glenda W
    Pros: Easy to teach, inexpensive, available from the publisher.
    Grades Used: 2nd, 4th

    Since this is our first year homeschooling I wanted to use a handwriting program that was familiar to our boys. HWT is the program our prior school had used. I like they way the teach cursive and the exercises are just right, not too much and not frustrating.

  19. Handwriting Without Tears Review by Chrystal Richerson

    I used this for pre-k with my oldest and then switched to something else, but I had to switch back because her frustration level was so high on the other.

  20. Handwriting Without Tears Review by Nicole Hale
    Pros: instant success which builds confidence
    Cons: a bit different than what I'd learned
    Grades Used: Beginning Cursive

    We just switched to using HWOT this year because of my lefty’s lack of confidence in starting cursive. Being a right-hander myself, I wan’t sure I could relay the proper positioning to my son. I literally stumbled upon HWOT in a website’s review. I thought, what the heck, and took the plunge. I’m so glad I did! We had instant, and I mean INSTANT success – even with my lefty!!!! Their handwriting has never been so beautiful! I just wish we had started from the beginning with HWOT for the printing skills.

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