The Development Of Vision And Basic Reading Skills In Handwriting
Handwriting is a fundamental skill that must be acquired early in education for academic success. For example, printing errors made by kindergarten children have been found to predict reading and language achievement in first grade(Simner, 1982). The dynamic interplay of perceptual, motor, and linguistic skills makes handwriting a complex skill that can be challenging for young children to master. In this study, the eye movements of 40 children between the ages of 4 and 8 years of age were analyzed to determine how efficiency in visual-motor coordination develops as they copy letters and words, methods that teachers commonly employ to teach handwriting. These data provide new information about the development of the processes involved in the complex skill of handwriting during the first years of formal education. In the early school years, children become increasingly efficient in how they deploy eye movements as they learn to copy letters. The new methods used here provide a more fine-grained assessment tool to measure visual perception during handwriting and offer a more systematic approach for identifying potential sources of errors made by young children as they learn to write.