Model parameters




Continuous Cursive




Very Slanted



The Zaner-Bloser method is named after its originators, handwriting reformer Charles Paxton Zaner (1864–1918) and his partner Elmer Ward Bloser (1865–1929), who founded the Zaner & Bloser Company in 1888.

This method consists of two stages, which have no formal progression. An unjoined print or manuscript model, also known as “ball and stick”, is taught to children first, from preschool to the first or second grade (5–7 years old). It uses four fundamental strokes to shape all the letters and numerals: vertical, horizontal, circle, and diagonal.

This is followed by the cursive model taught to second and third grade students (7–9 years old). The Zaner-Bloser cursive is fully continuous, with both upper and lowercase letters always joining. The writing is slanted, and the shapes are tall, narrow and oval. The letters feature distinctive loops in their ascenders and descenders, in letters like b, h, p and q.


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  • Grades K–6 Cursive & Manuscript [WWW Document], n.d. . Zaner-Bloser Handwriting. URL (accessed 7.5.23).

  • Palmer, A.N., 1915. The Palmer method of business writing: a series of self-teaching in rapid, plain, unshaded, coarse-pen, muscular movement writing. New York : A.N. Palmer Company.

  • The Gold Standard in Handwriting Instruction [WWW Document], n.d. . ZanerBloser. URL (accessed 7.5.23).

  • Thornton, T.P., 1996. Handwriting in America: A Cultural History, first. ed. Yale University Press.

  • Zaner-Bloser Handwriting – Grade 3 Student Edition, 2020. Zaner-Bloser, U.S.A.

  • Zaner-Bloser, 2023. Zaner-Bloser Handwriting: Grades K–6 Cursive & Manuscript [WWW Document]. Zaner-Bloser. URL (accessed 7.5.23).

  • Zaner, C.P., 1904. The arm movement method of rapid writing. Columbus, Ohio : Zaner & Bloser Co.