Primarium website released!

June 2023

After almost two years of hard work, we are proud to share the brand new Primarium website, TypeTogether’s pioneering, global handwriting project.

Beginning with a question

Primarium began as an in-depth, global research project that asked, “How is Latin-based handwriting being taught in early childhood education?” We then built a research team to understand this multifaceted subject from various regional perspectives.

We began in 2022 with a handful of members from our core TypeTogether team: Veronika Burian, José Scaglione, Cecilia Brarda, Pooja Saxena, and others as availability permitted. We were joined by Sandro Fetter, a professor at Universidade Federal do Rio Grande do Sul (UFRGS), Brazil, who focused on handwriting education for his doctoral thesis, and later by Caroline Schäfer, a graduate student and teaching assistant also at UFRGS. Over 60 collaborators provided region-specific experiences and insights, ranging from teachers and school administrators to handwriting experts, typeface designers, and calligraphers.

The result is the Primarium website (shoutout to Petra Dočekalová for the Primarium logo) — a free, publicly accessible resource, which was designed and developed by Elena Ramirez of Ashler Design in close collaboration with TypeTogether. Already populated with over half our research output, you can expect to see updates in the coming months as we expand the number of countries covered. And if you’d like to contribute to the project, please don’t hesitate to get in touch.

Resource-filled website

You can explore Primarium by country or by handwriting model, which are exemplars that represent distinct letter styles and teaching approaches distilled from painstaking research and analysis. The website features newly-written essays on each presented country, and they are supplemented with visual samples from textbooks, syllabi, and an exhaustive list of the sources we consulted to create a comprehensive asset for future researchers. The section on handwriting models also enjoys the same attention, with each model made into an illustration to highlight its key visual features.


Handwriting models.


Example of handwriting model page (Grafito, Chile).


Example of country page (Croatia, Europe).

Upcoming Playpen typefaces

Not only were we conducting detailed research on this subject, but we were also simultaneously creating new typefaces based on our findings. So the entire process has been a rolling research-and-production marathon. The more we learned about regional handwriting differences, the more we had to work to incorporate those characteristics into our upcoming font families. More knowledge and examples led to more iterations, and those iterations led to more questions and research, and then repeat.
So in addition to being an invaluable educational resource, Primarium is also the foundation for two upcoming typeface families (Playpen and Playpen Sans). But is that all? No, of course not. There’s more candy surprises hiding in this educational piñata. Stay tuned for more details about them later this year!

Different levels of connections and loops in the Playpen family.

Playpen Sans eight weights, with seven alternates per character. 

THanks & Support

Primarium was developed by TypeTogether, and our thanks goes out to the support we received from Google Fonts and the Universidade Federal do Rio Grande do Sul (UFRGS) in Brazil.

About Us

TypeTogether is an indie type foundry committed to excellence in type design with a focus on editorial use. Additionally, TypeTogether creates custom type design for corporate use. We invite you to browse our library of retail fonts or contact us to discuss custom type design projects.