How to Improve Your Handwriting In English

The way you write on paper is called your handwriting. Everyone has different handwriting styles. Some people write very neatly. Other people write sloppily. Some people write in cursive. Other people write in print.

This lesson will give you tips to improve your handwriting in English.

Click Here for Step-by-Step Rules, Stories and Exercises to Practice All English Tenses

Click Here for Step-by-Step Rules, Stories and Exercises to Practice All Tenses

Studies show that you learn more when you write by hand than when you type on a computer. The simple act of writing things down on paper is an effective method for improving memory. That is why it can help to take notes in class and in meetings on paper instead of on the computer.

You might also write by hand when filling out an application for a job, completing forms at the doctor's office, or writing a note to your boss. It is important that these people can read your handwriting!

Neat handwriting is important in any language. When you learn a new language, you have to train your brain to write in a new way.

In this lesson, you will read tips to improve your handwriting in English. These tips can also be used to improve your handwriting in any language.

How to Improve Your Handwriting In English

Tips to improve your handwriting in English

Sometimes I write notes paper, and I cannot read them when I am finished. Sometimes I write notes on the board for my students, and they cannot read the notes. It is embarrassing that sometimes my handwriting is sloppy!

Everyone has their own personal handwriting style, but some people have messy handwriting. Do you have messy handwriting in English? Luckily, it is possible to improve your handwriting. You just need to practice with the tips below.

Tip 1: Understand the English alphabet

To improve your handwriting in English, first you need to understand the English alphabet. The English alphabet has 26 letters. You can write each letter in 4 different ways:
  • uppercase (capital) print

  • lowercase (small) print

  • uppercase (capital) cursive

  • lowercase (small) cursive
Uppercase (capital) letters are all the same height. Lowercase (small) letters are different heights on the lines of a paper. Some lowercase letters have lines that go down. Some lowercase letters have lines that go up. Some lowercase letters are taller than others.

Print is normal, plain writing. The letters are not connected. There is a space between each letter in a word. This type of handwriting is informal. You can see examples of this type of writing on top of the graphic below.

In cursive writing, the letters of a word are connected with curvy lines. This type of handwriting is usually used for signatures and formal writing. You can see examples of this type of writing on the bottom of the graphic below.

To improve your handwriting, you will need to practice writing all of the English letters in all 4 ways.

How to Improve Your Handwriting In English

Tip 2: Slow down

It is important to slow down when you write in a new language, so you can form the letters correctly. If English is not your native language, then the shapes in the English alphabet are probably new to you also.

It takes time to retrain your handwriting muscles for writing in a new language.
It is not about getting it perfect! It is about improving.

Take your time when writing in English. Slow down and think about the shapes of the letters that you are writing. Complete each letter. Write with a pencil or erasable pen, so you can fix your mistakes. Check your work before you are finished.

Tip 3: Practice often

You can download free handwriting worksheets online or purchase a handwriting book. Use these to practice your handwriting skills. You can focus on one letter at a time in print or cursive or both.

Remember to practice spacing (between letters and words), slants (the way the letter leans), and sizing of each letter.

Remember, it takes time to retrain your brain and handwriting muscles. Don't give up!

After you have practiced each of the letters in different sizes and styles, you should practice using the letters together to form words. This is important when writing in cursive because all of the letters in one word are connected with lines.

writing a paper

Tip 4: Write in English everyday

After you have reviewed the basics, it is important to practice often. If you practice by writing in English in a journal everyday, your handwriting will improve. Here are some suggestions for handwriting practice in your journal:
  • Start a collection of your favorite English vocabulary words and their definitions and uses. (This is also a great way to build your English vocabulary!)

  • Start a collection of your favorite quotes.

  • Start a collection of your favorite poems.

  • Start a collection of your favorite jokes in English

  • Copy the lyrics of your favorite songs.

  • Make lists.

  • Write down your thoughts and feelings each day.

  • Write a poem or story.

  • Practice writing your signature in cursive.


You can also practice in your everyday life. Here are some ways you can practice your handwriting everyday:
  • Write a letter to send in the mail.

  • Write thank you cards.

  • Complete crossword puzzles.

  • Make a shopping list.

  • Write a to-do list.

  • Leave notes for your family or co-workers in English.

  • Use your best handwriting to complete forms (doctor appointments, job applications, school forms, and more).

Tip 6: Copy handwriting you like

You can find many examples of handwriting in English online. Find a style that you like. If you can, print out a sample of the handwriting. Get some tracing paper and start to copy it. The more you imitate (or copy) a way of writing, the easier it will be to use that style in your own handwriting.

Remember: it takes time and practice to retrain your handwriting muscles to write in a new way. Do not give up!

A useful resource

The Irish National Adult Literacy Agency made a useful booklet in PDF format with tips and lots of practice for a great handwriting in English. You can view and download it here:

Better Handwriting for Adults

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