Dr. Robert Rose recruited me to support a research project that he and a number of classroom teachers conducted using a list-serve on Yahoo Groups. We are running the study again this year which prompts this post.

The focus is to gather handwriting fluency data using a simple, on-paper, timed writing exercise with kindergarten and grade one students. The handwriting fluency score, expressed as letters-per minute, is correlated by the teacher with a "plain English" assessment of current reading skill for each student.

Handwriting fluency data with current reading evaluation is submitted at least four times during the school year. A baseline set is submitted as the year begins. We have already received dat for more than 100 students. A second data set will be submitted after the Thanksgiving holiday. A third set is due early in March, and a final set near the end of the school year.

The initial work from 2003 resulted in a paper by Dr. Rose. He was not able to get that paper published. The Rose study data shows clearly that all non-reading children lack handwriting fluency and all good readers show handwriting fluency scores near the 40 letters-per-minute mark. Further, the data over time shows that children begin to read once handwriting fluency improves to a level near that mark. That Paper can be downloaded from this web page...

Does anyone knows of any other efforts to demonstrate a connection between handwriting fluency and reading skills on a scientific level?

Given the flexibility of MovAlyzeR and the possibility for connecting with other external neuro-function measurement tools, might there be a way to use the precise handwriting fluency measures from MovalyzeR with other tools to investigate the possibility that a certain level of handwriting fluency triggers changes that enable reading skills in entry level students?

Because there is minimal priority for handwriting instruction and virtually none for handwriting fluency in the kindergarten language curriculum, demonstration of a connection would be very important.

Thanks for any references you can provide.
Rand Nelson
Peterson Directed Handwriting