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St Mary's Catholic Primary School

Together we are a family of God, a family of love, a family of learners

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Together we are a family of God, a family of love, a family of learners


Statement of Intent


Handwriting is to be taught regularly through short, focused sessions and may be linked with spelling, grammar or phonics objectives.


Handwriting practice is to be carried out in separate handwriting books but is to be modelled and expected in all writing in all books. 



Five stages are identified and form the basic organisational structure of handwriting:

1. Readiness for writing: gross and fine motor skills leading to letter formation

2. Beginning to join

3. Securing joins

4. Practicing speed and fluency

5. Presentation skills


Role of the teacher

  • To follow the school policy to help each child develop legible and fluent handwriting.
  • To provide direct teaching and accurate modelling (All adults to model the agreed cursive handwriting style whenever they are writing within class and on class/school displays).
  • To provide resources and an environment that promotes good handwriting.
  • To observe pupils, monitor progress and determine targets for development.
  • The cursive font to be on display in the classroom and where applicable on the table for pupils to access.


Foundation Stage

The emphasis at this stage is with movement and fine motor skill development. Letter formation (starting at the right entry point and then moving in the right direction) learned at this early stage becomes automatic and has a profound influence on later fluency and legibility. Pupils are initially taught to print letters and then taught to use lead-in and lead-out strokes as soon as they are ready for letter formation.


To aid movement, close attention is given to pencil grip, correct posture, the positioning of the paper and the organisation of the writing space. Teachers are vigilant to ensure that bad habits do not become ingrained and that the specific needs of left-handed pupils (for example, additional tracking and tracing of letters at the pre-writing stage) and those with special educational needs are met. 


Key Stage 1

Building on the Foundation Stage, pupils at Key Stage 1 develop a legible handwriting style.  This is achieved in Year 1/2 by developing a comfortable and efficient pencil grip and by practising handwriting in conjunction with spelling and independent writing. Some pupils will begin to use cursive handwriting in Year Two by starting to join their letters. This is dependent on ability not the age of each child.


Key Stage 2

The target for children in Key Stage Two is to produce a fluent, consistently formed style of fully cursive handwriting with equal spacing between the letters and words. Cursive handwriting will be introduced in Year 3.

Children will have regular handwriting sessions using appropriate prepared resources, in the agreed handwriting style (see attachment). Handwriting practice is to be carried out in handwriting books but handwriting following the agreed handwriting scheme is expected to be used by pupils in all books and across all lessons. 


All children in Key Stage Two will use the agreed cursive handwriting style in all lessons.

All children should write in pencil in their books until teachers are satisfied that they can consistently write in a fluent cursive style. Children are to write in blue ink only.

Pencils will be used in all Mathematics work and for drawing and completion of diagrams in Science.



Our Mission and Values

Together we are a family of God, a family of love, a family of learners.

Read Our School Ethos

Trust Information

St Mary's Catholic Primary School is an academy, and part of the Kent Catholic Schools’ Partnership. The Kent Catholic Schools’ Partnership is an exempt charity and a company limited by guarantee registered in England and Wales under company registration number 08176019 at registered address: Barham Court, Teston, Maidstone, Kent, ME18 5BZ. St Mary's Catholic Primary School is a business name of Kent Catholic Schools’ Partnership.