A small student is struggling to write the number five. I feel her pain! Next to eight, five is the most difficult number. Making a handsome 5 was a huge endeavor for me back just after the dinosaurs died out. This was slightly before I learned to zip my jacket, and well prior to my struggles spelling "kitchen" and "squirrel".
You can find memory devices and practice worksheets for 5 on the internet. Some lucky kids are able to master this fiendish numeral by remembering "straight neck, fat tummy, wearing cap". Forty-five years later, I can't recall if my beloved first grade teacher, Mrs. Erickson, helped me personalize the writing process, or if it was one of my schoolteacher aunts. Maybe I was inspired by the frequent sight of my dad sitting on a metal rocking lawn chair wearing his hat and counting the time between lightning flash and thunder boom.
© 2008 Nancy L. Ruder