Anyone who's familiar with my handwriting won't be surprised that handwriting is important in my classroom. (People often mistake my writing for something that's been typed.) One of the tricks I learned several years ago from Math Their Way helps my kids head into second grade with pretty good handwriting skills. I teach all the numerals and letters with a purple and green crayon. Here's a picture of a few of the purple/green numerals on my wall.
Every numeral and every letter is made with purple and green, even if there's only one stroke involved. More importantly, purple is always first. For example, starting at the bottom of the numeral 1 is illegal, because that's green, not purple of course.
When I teach the numerals and letters, I will actually say the colors as I make them. The kids do too, even though they never actually use purple and green crayons. Whether they're writing with their whiteboard markers or pencils, they will say the purple and green as they write. (Under the pictures below, I've included how I would say the colors for the letters. You'll notice that if there are two purples or two greens in a letter, I'll say the color names twice.)
A - "Purple, purple, green." a - "Purple, green."
B - "Purple, green, green," b - "Purple, green."
C - "Purple, green." c - "Purple, green."
It might seem goofy, but it really does work. For most of the kids, the visual and auditory connections (and a whole lot of repetition) help seal the correct directionality in their little brains and hands. The simplicity of it helps as well. There aren't any fancy directions for each letter that need to be memorized.
Just in case someone out there seems the slightest bit interested in this purple/green thing, I've created a few documents that will show how the numerals and letters are made with purple and green. Click on the pictures for your own copy, and try not to notice my rudimentary tech skills when I made them. :)