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  1. Hello, All! My daughter will be 8 next month and she wants an Edison pen in Hawaiian (Unicorn Barf). She does use fountain pens and while I understand wanting a pen, I can't seem to justify a $150+ pen purchase for an 8-year old. Does anyone have any suggestions for a good, less expensive alternative? I looked at the Noodler's Konrad pens, but none of the colors were right. Thanks if advance for your help!
  2. I graduated from college recently and started using fountain pens almost a year ago, and reading between the lines on FPN, I *think* this makes me one of the younger people on this forum. I'm curious to know if your kids, nephews, nieces, grandchildren, etc. also use and hopefully love fountain pens. Alternatively, are there any other people here who are in their twenties or teens?
  3. My 3 year old daughter is starting to imitate writing (up and down scribbles for the moment) and it has caused me to think about starting to teach her handwriting in the next year or two. I don't see much point in teaching her to print since whatever school she attends will teach her that. But, many schools are opting not to teach cursive handwriting and I would like her to learn a cursive style (it's not clear what school she will go to at the moment, the public schools are a bit of a mess so it might be a private school, actually it makes me a little ill to think about trying to figure all that out). Even places that do teach cursive are not especially good at it. I know it seems early, but she's already drawing things that are recognizably people and animals and has some success tracing around objects and coloring mostly within the lines and is interested in the letters that spell her name (I swear I'm not pushing this, I find her doing these things when I've been ignoring her and she has to find a way to entertain herself*). So, I've been looking at various styles and programs a little at a time so that I can have something on hand when she really shows an interest in learning to write. On the one hand, if she is taught cursive in school it will more than likely be a style of American cursive similar to Palmer or Business hand. On the other hand, I have heard good things about the Getty Dubay series which teaches a version of basic italic and italic script and I am more partial to that style, especially since I have been learning italic calligraphy. My question is, what programs have people used for teaching handwriting and what did you think of them? Would it be counterproductive to teach a system that isn't likely to be taught in school? *That is, I find her doing that some of the time, the rest of the time she's more likely to be getting into something she knows she shouldn't be into.
  4. I've been really inspired by a week-long course I recently attended on Gothic calligraphy and illumination. Since it was in the school holidays it split about fifty-fifty between adult calligraphers and children plus parents, the children aged from (I'm guessing) about eight to fourteen. Day one: some of the children found it hard to settle, particularly three boys who had come together and were pretty noisy and distracted from time to time. One or two of the children knew quite a lot about the topic, others knew nothing. (I think all the adults had already worked with the tutor before.) Day two: a couple of the girls were already producing some very nice work. Day three: suddenly I became aware that there was complete silence in the room. The three little boys who had been quite disruptive on day one were completely absorbed in their work, two writing alphabets with the dip pen and one copying a foliage design. Day five: At the end of the course I was really impressed by some of the work they had turned out. One little girl had produced quite fine Gothic textura, and went off with a newly purchased dip pen and nibs as well as a book on calligraphy. There is something in the process of writing these old scripts that really seems to appeal. I hadn't expected the little boys to get so 'into' it - but they really did. And they enjoyed the birds and beasts in the margins - one or two idiosyncratic additions to the menagerie also appeared later on (though I didn't manage to find room for the bagpipe-playing pig I wanted to add. Next time...) I think the future of the fountain pen is in safe hands! Has anyone else got good stories of how to introduce kids to FPs and calligraphy?

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