I have used copywork in my homeschool for over 10 years and it’s been crucial to developing my children’s handwriting skills. They spend a little time every school day practicing writing from their copywork books. Copywork encourages good penmanship and also gives a subtle lesson in spelling, grammar and punctuation as children write from good models.
Selection Of Copywork
In my early days of homeschooling, I found selecting copywork for my child to be quite time-consuming. My young son also found it hard to copy from a book. Small letters, and books that wouldn’t stay open meant he kept loosing the spot he was copying from. He became quite frustrated with this. So I tried typing the passages out or highlighting them in a book. This worked but it was a time waster, and I ruined a few books.
My solution was to use pre-done copywork books.
Whilst using these copywork books a friend, Margaret, and I were bemoaning the fact that there were no Australian literature (or spelling) copywork books. This began our resolve to put together a collection of quality Australian and New Zealand literature for children to use.
Pre-Done Copywork – It’s Such a Timesaver
Our Downunder Copywork books:
- save you the time needed to select the copywork and present it in a suitable format
- have passages that are thoughtfully selected using, quality, age appropriate, Australian and New Zealand literature
- help you fulfilling the Australian National Curriculum Australian literature requirements
- include poetry, fiction and factual texts which provide a good variety
- give you a choice of handwriting styles—manuscript or italics
- ebook pdf format & copyright means these copywork books can be used multiple times within the family.
How to Use Our Copywork eBooks
- Select the copywork ebook that best suits your child’s ability.
- Print of the selected ebook in one go and fasten them together.
- Put them with your child’s other homeschool work.
- Instruct them to copy one page of the copywork book per day (if this is too difficult then work towards a page a day).
It’s that easy, it requires minimal forward planning and it’s something they can do independently.
Choosing Your Font
Manuscript Handwriting Font Styles This style is characterised by its easy to learn vertical letter forms. The child has only four simple strokes to learn and mastery is quickly accomplished. The printed letters are easily read and are often used in books.
- Zaner-Bloser and Ball and Stick are basically the same manuscript font with a different name.
- Manuscript cursive is fancier; in fact it is quite different to the printing style. It was the style I used at school back in the 1970s. My daughters prefer this font.
Modern manuscript (D’Nealian) is a slanted form of manuscript. It still has two different styles for print and cursive but the slant, in theory, makes transition to cursive easier. Italics Handwriting Font Styles It is a slightly slanted font that looks similar to cursive. The same alphabet is used from printing to cursive. There are more strokes for a child to learn initially than with manuscript print. Letter formation taught to beginners evolves seamlessly into joined-up (cursive) writing. The letter formation never changes. Since italics cursive is just an extension of italics printing the difficulty some children experience when transitioning from printing to cursive using manuscript almost disappears. My sons prefer this font. Italics font include:
- Foundation Font (Australia and New Zealand)
- Getty Dubay (USA)
- Handwriting Without Tears (USA)
- Barchowsky (UK)
- Jarman (UK)
Downunder Copywork Book One
This copy work book assumes a basic level of competence in handwriting for the student. It begins with tracing the font and then progresses to a smaller font that can be copied on lines below the text. It has a place for your students to make their own illustrations and a few pictures to colour in.
Age range: 7-8.
Available in Manuscript Print (ball &stick font) or Italics Print (foundation style)
Literature Selection Includes:
|Iron Bark Splinters||A Book for Kids||Hairy Maclary|
|Click Go the Shears||D H Souter||Amy Mack|
|The Little Black Princess||Bound For Botany Bay||K Langloh Parker|
|Spotty the Bower Bird||Blinky Bill||Nuri Mass|
|C J Dennis||About Bradman||Lest We Forget|
|Colin Thiele||Bass and Flinders||Evonne Goolagong|
|Old Man Platypus||Banjo Patterson||Iron Bark Splinters|
Covering The Australian Curriculum
- Children produce texts in the desired handwriting font from good models.
- Basic spelling and punctuation rules are used when reproducing different texts.
- Vocabulary is increased with exposure to different texts.
- Produces texts clearly, effectively and accurately, using the sentence structure, grammatical features and punctuation conventions of the text type.
- Uses knowledge of letter-sound correspondences, common letter patterns and a range of strategies to spell familiar and unfamiliar words.
- Variety of text types used using Australian literature .
PDF ebook: 70 pages
Recommended Age: Ages 6 to 8
Curriculum Suggestion: Year 1 to Year 2