One of the things I love about being on the Crew is the way some products come up for review at just the right time for our family. It's such a blessing! Katie was just finishing her kindergarten handwriting book when we received a new handwriting book from Laurelwood Books. I chose Patriotic Penmanship, Grade 1 Manuscript for her.
Laurelwood Books offers books from preschool through high school in the Patriotic Penmanship series. The first few books cover manuscript writing, and from third grade up, the books are in cursive. They also offer a transition book, where the passages are printed in both manuscript and cursive, which is a really nice feature, especially for students who are struggling to make the switch.
This series by Mary Ellen Tedrow is a Christian based curriculum, and the quotes come from both the Bible and famous historic figures, such as Abraham Lincoln. The first couple pages go over the correct formation of the letters of the alphabet as a review.
Patriotic Penmanship is set up differently than the handwriting books we're used to. We are accustomed to having a variety short passages to copy every single day. Patriotic Penmanship contains 30 longer lessons, more suited to a once a week focus on handwriting.
When we first started the book, I split the lessons in half. Katie was used to a small amount of handwriting each day, so I didn't want to overwhelm her.
She always asked me to read her the quotes. Many of them are a bit "over her head," but they're wholesome and inspirational. I found the poem about Mr. Nobody in lesson 22 to be wryly amusing. We call the invisible person who destroys things in our house Not Me, but I'm very familiar with the concept.
After a few days of working on a single page per day, I had her start doing a full lesson in each sitting. She's very careful in her writing, so it was slow going, but she did fine.
Overall, this is a nice, little, no-frills, handwriting book. It's 30 lessons are not enough for our particular style of homeschooling. Despite doing on a reduced amount of work (in the beginning) and a summer time relaxed school pace, Katie has already completed 11 lessons in just a little over a month. Even if we set this book aside for the rest of the summer and pick it back up again when school starts in August, I'm pretty sure she'd finish it by the end of October. This would be a great book for a family who generally does a lot of copywork or notebooking as part of their homeschool style, and needs a once a week handwriting program to supplement on days when there is no other writing assigned.
Laurelwood Books offers a wide variety of curriculum and resources for homeschooling families, including both new and used materials. Other Crew member families reviewed different levels of Patriotic Penmanship, as well as several other products, including state studies, Scripture Scribes, and Latin. You can read about their experiences by clicking the box below. You can connect with Laurelwood Books on Facebook.
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