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Handwriting and the National Curriculum - Northern Ireland

Foundation Stage – Year 1 & Year 2 (4 to 6  years old)


Year 1 (4 to 5 years old)

Literacy Indicators: Progression in Writing


By the end of Year 1 most children should:

Year 2 (5 to 6 years old)

Literacy Indicators: Progression in Writing


Progressing towards Key Stage 1 most children should:

‘Northern Ireland Curriculum: Language & Literacy in the Foundation Stage Framework for Literacy Development: produced by the CCEA, copyright on website 2016’


Key Stage 1 – Years 3 & 4 (6 to 8 years old)


Year 3 (6 to 7 years old)

Levels of Progression in Communication across the curriculum: Key Stages 1 and 2 (Levels 1–5)

Requirements for communication – Writing


Pupils should be enabled to:

Level 1

Pupils can:

Level 2

Level 3

Year 4 (7 to 8 years old) – KS 1

Levels of Progression in Communication across the curriculum: Key Stages 1 and 2 (Levels 1–5)

Requirements for communication – Writing


Pupils should be enabled to:

Level 3


Key Stage 2 – Year 5, 6 and 7 (8 to 11 years old)


For Levels 4 and 5 there are no specific handwriting progression statements as it is assumed that the handwriting criteria has already been achieved when a child is assessed as Level 3.

Requirements for communication – Writing


Pupils should be enabled to:

Level 4

Level 5

‘From 2017/18 Assessment Arrangements In relation to pupils in the final years of Key Stages 1 and 2 for Communication, Using Mathematics and Using ICT: produced by the CCEA, copyright 2017’