In the mid-1970s, Carol Ann Retzer was a young elementary school teacher who spent her days instructing first and second graders at a private school in California. As a believer, Carol Ann understood the privilege of being entrusted with the children in her class and always looked for new ways to bring her Christian faith into every subject and every lesson she taught."Only one cow, Clarabell, came."As she looked at the colorfully-illustrated workbook, an idea was born:Was there a way to reinforce Christian beliefs and worldviewwhile teaching HANDWRITING, just as they did with the other subjects at their school?
One morning, Carol Ann opened her handwriting textbook to review the day's lesson. The practice sentence read:
"God is so good."
Carol Ann picked up the Bible on her desk and turned to the scripture that had been shared in their worship time that morning. Then, she walked to the chalkboard and wrote this verse:
At that moment, she didn't realize that she had just taken the first step in creating a complete, faith-based penmanship program like no other. What she did know was that her students loved their special handwriting lesson. After practicing the simple verse for just a few days, the first and second graders in her class had memorized the passage. When the week drew to a close, she passed out colored pens and pencils for the students to decorate the final version of their handwriting verse, and encouraged them to take home their completed pages and share them with others. That first lesson was such a success that Carol Ann continued to choose a new verse each week for penmanship practice. She focused on Psalms and Proverbs, meticulously selecting weekly verses that were developmentally appropriate for her class. Soon, her friend and fellow teacher Eva Hoshino was doing the same with her third and fourth grade classes. The school principal lent her artistic talents by designing a variety of Border Sheets for the students to decorate. Together, the educators researched handwriting methods and theory, attended seminars, and reached out to experts for input and advice into building a complete program with both Manuscript and Cursive instruction. Before long, all of the teachers in their school had adopted this new tool to help students learn scripture and biblical principles, while mastering an important life skill.
Within just a few years, more than 900 private schools adopted Carol and Eva's scripture-based handwriting program and more schools were contacting them, wanting to know more.
Demand was great enough that they entered into a publishing partnership, allowing Carol Ann and Eva to focus on their passion for teaching. The company, Concerned Communications, relocated in the late 1980s from California to Northwest Arkansas, where it still operates in 2023.
Today, A Reason For maintains the same desire to make Biblical truth central in every subject. Verses in our Handwriting series are selected not only to be meaningful and developmentally appropriate, but to help create the foundational Christian worldview that today's young people will need to stand firm in their faith. Additionally, we are committed to creating materials that are not only academically excellent — reflecting current research and educational best practices — but are also unfailingly true to God's Word. We are passionate about advancing the Gospel and providing resources that make it easy for homeschooling parents to engage the hearts and minds of their children.