Where did this Magic Caterpillar come from and when did this adventure begin? More than thirty years ago, when working as an Early Years Teacher in the Northern Territory, Barbara Brann was observing that the young students in her class could not ‘remember and do’. The moment they were asked to move from one place to complete a task, they seemed to no longer remember the task they were asked to do. This is a familiar scenario to many a classroom teacher!! Barbara observed a connection between movement and memory and she extended this observation of gross motor movement and memory to fine motor movement and memory. Her interest and observations became the foundation for her research into the fine motor movement of handwriting development and the significance this has to literacy development in the Early Years.
In supporting her own class to have success with handwriting and early literacy acquisition, Barbara Brann developed the story of ‘Casey the Caterpillar’ and the appeal to young children and to teachers meant that the ‘Magic Caterpillar’ grew wings and took off – literally!! This story has now travelled to every state in Australia and to many countries throughout the world. Barbara also has travelled extensively throughout Australia to share her own insights and research into early literacy development. During the past few years, Barbara has been accompanied by Danielle Steendam and now, ‘Casey the Caterpillar Handwriting Process’ Workshops are presented by Danielle through her own consultancy, ‘Literacy Adventure.’
The two hour Professional Development workshop includes practical examples of handwriting development and provides teachers with opportunities to participate in thought provoking discussions and activities that aim to highlight the answers to the following frequently asked questions.
Is handwriting important?
How do you begin to teach children to write?
How do you know if children are ready to write?
What skills need to be taught prior to handwriting?
How do you teach the underpinning skills that are required for handwriting?
What has Short Term Working Memory and memory spaces got to do with handwriting?
How do you support children to develop the skills that are required for handwriting?
How do you contextualise the learning of ‘handwriting’ for children?
How do you keep handwriting connected to reading so that the whole learning process does not become dissociated for the child?
Why is it important to develop handwriting to the point of automaticity?
What are the steps of the ‘Casey the Caterpillar Handwriting Process’ and what is the significance of each of these steps.
Come along and join Danielle as she shares with you how to use ‘Casey the Caterpillar Handwriting Process’ to support young children to get it right from the start!!