Mumbai: Hospital provides professional training for kids to improve handwriting
Since its initiation in January, seven children have enrolled in the programme at Surya Children Hospital at Santacruz. They include children with special needs
In A first-of-its-kind programme initiated by a hospital in Mumbai, an occupational therapist has been helping children improve their handwriting. Since its initiation in January, seven children have enrolled in the programme at Surya Children Hospital at Santacruz. They include children with special needs.
Children are often rebuked and lack confidence owing to bad handwriting. The programme provides professional training to improve handwriting. "We started the Handwriting Without Tears programme in January 2019 and so far around seven children have participated in it. The youngest was a five-year-old. He could read the letters but couldn't write them," said Dr Rupal Gupta, the therapist. The programme includes the use of various tools to teach children writing techniques. "We use tools such as chalk board, creative art patterns and even wood pieces to create alphabets," she added.
Dr Rupal Gupta
But just learning techniques doesn't help students, as often they suffer from additional issues, hence they are also evaluated. "I need to analyse why a child's handwriting is affected. Often, it may be because of posture. The child might not have proper strength in the hand. For this, we have to give them another form of training," Gupta said. She also highlighted the need to include writing with pencils and colours for free flow of strokes till at least Std V. She also feels excessive use of technology is slowing down the writing speed of children.
"In schools, children start using pens at a very early stage which affects their writing style, especially cursive writing. Nowadays, assignments are computerised at schools," she added. Dr Gupta has procured a level 1 certificate for the Handwriting Without Tears programme. This is an umbrella project of a Gaithersburg-based (USA) early education company called Learning Without Tears.
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