The first lesson in Norah's handwriting book was actually a pretest. She was asked to draw a picture and then write the letters she already knew. I've looked ahead and the last lesson in the book is another test, similar to this one, that will show how much she has improved with practice.
I love this idea. Even when we don't use a formal handwriting program, I think we will use this type of exercise to access how Norah improves after a period of practice. I've dated the first test and I can't wait to compare the two tests to see how Norah's handwriting has progressed once she completes the book we have chosen. I don't plan to keep more records than are absolutely necessary, but I think pages like this will be worth saving.
We also used flash cards to match capital letters with their lower case versions. I wasn't sure if this exercise would be excessive. Norah's already reading, after all, so why would she need to practice identifying her letters? But, I was surprised by how many letters Norah needed to review, how often she got hung up on little differences between them. Lower case letters like p, b, d and q and all very similar, after all, so concentrating on their shapes by using these cards seems to have, no doubt, helped Norah in more ways than one.