Tuesday, March 2, 2010

TOS Crew Review: Zeezok: Presidential Penmanship

The product I have received is Presidential Penmanship Italic Style Complete Program on CD-Rom. This is a supplemental handwriting skills program for first through senior high. This is copywork type program - where the students copy quotes from presidents.  The quotes come from speeches and from books such as George Washington's Rules of Civility and Decent. It comes in six different handwriting styles (see below.)

The quotes are shorter for younger grades and progressively get more difficult as the student progresses through the program. By the end of sixth grade the student is expected to quote the Gettysburg Address.  In high school the passages are smaller in the beginning and progress to longer passages. Quotes are also taken from Declaration of Independence, Lincoln and Reagan's Inaugural Addresses. All the quotes are excellent for memorization and civics studies.

This is a supplemental program since it does not actually provide instruction for the individual letters. It is assumed you have a basic understanding of writing the letters in the version you choose. You can choose the grade level that best matches your child's ability or you can do it based on subject matter. For example, the 5th grade level discusses manners and that might be a topic of interest for you.

For the earlier years you are expected to trace the letters and stay in the lines provided, then you copy and trace the quote on top of light grey scale letters. Then you are on your own to write out the quote on the lines provided. The child would have enough to do one lesson a week for 36 weeks. As you get in higher grades less practice is given and more lessons per week are expected. In third grade 108 lessons are provided.  Extra lined pages are included for you to print out as needed.

The quotes are great discussion starters and my children enjoyed copying the verses. The only difficulty we had was with a child with a visual impairment being able to stay in the lines while copying and seeing the light grey print.

What is great about this is that you only have to print out as much as you need and you can use this with multiple age households, inexpensively. You do need to provide paper and a printer to print off of the CD-Rom. Using "fast draft" to use less ink, as a printer option, did not effect the quality of the print compared with using the "normal" option.

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