Vranch House is a centre for the treatment of over 2,000 outpatients with physical difficulties, a provider of various therapies throughout Devon and an independent Day School in Exeter for children with significant physical difficulties.

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Last updated: 26/05/2024

Fine Motor Skills Group

Write to the Beat - a mainstream school outreach programme

The Write to the Beat group runs for 5 weeks.

Aims of group

  • To facilitate the development of the child's fine motor skills
  • To establish good writing posture
  • To develop the child's ability to form letters correctly
  • To develop fluency & accuracy/pencil control
  • To develop the child's self-esteem
  • To help the child to develop listening skills and ability to respond to instructions
  • To develop the child's ability to behave co-operatively in a group situation

Group structure

The groups run for a five week series of 1 hour sessions and include the development of skills, strategies and techniques to improve various aspects of handwriting and fine motor skills.


Each child receives a certificate at the end of the term and a booklet containing all the child’s work.
A progress report is provided for home and school.
At the end of the half-term, the child’s future therapy needs are discussed.

Focus of the groups

Each group session focuses on the following:

  • Handwriting posture
  • Pencil grip
  • Fluency & accuracy
  • Letter formation
  • Letter joins (if appropriate)
  • Scissors skills
  • Creative activities
  • Self-evaluation

Creative activities, paper/pencil tasks, home sheets

We use creative activities as well as pencil and paper exercises. We may send some writing or creative activity home each week and would really appreciate it if the children could complete it and return it the following week. Hopefully, these activities are fun to do!

Letter Formation

We do the letters in ‘movement patterns’ – i.e. focusing on the principle movements necessary for particular letters families.
These letters families are in line with the National Literacy Strategy

Curly-caterpillar letters (anti-clockwise round letters)

LETTERS: c, a, d, g, q, o, (e, f, s)

Bouncing letters(down & retrace upwards in clockwise direction)

LETTERS: r, b, h, m, n, p, (k)

Long ladder letters (down & off in another direction)

LETTERS: i, l, t, u, j, y

Zigzag letters (letters with diagonals)

LETTERS: k, v, w, x, y, z

Other skills we work on:

  • Attention & concentration
  • Listening to instructions
  • Following instructions correctly
  • Taking turns
  • Listening whilst others speak
  • Taking pride in presentation
  • Sitting still
  • Working co-operatively in a small group - sharing resources
  • Self-evaluation - judging what has been done particularly well
  • Developing self-esteem and self-confidence

Criteria for group membership

  • Attending mainstream school
  • Prior full assessment by a physiotherapist or occupational therapist
  • Difficulties with handwriting/fine motor skills
  • Self-esteem possibly at risk
  • Age 6 - 11 (Groups are organised according to the children's abilities)

Group number and staffing:

Four children in the group as a maximum
Two Occupational Therapists work with the group each session.

We hope that the children will enjoy these sessions - we aim to have fun as well as to work hard.