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Tips for Teaching Left Handed Children to Write June 30, by christiekiley 17 Comments As a pediatric occupational therapist, I work with kids on handwriting all the time.
I have found that people are often intimidated or confused about how to teach left handed children to write.
Here are a few tips for teaching left handed children to write: If you allow him opportunities to explore using both hands, he will most likely develop a preference and eventually dominance that utilizes whichever hand demonstrates the greatest skill, strength, and dexterity.
This can obviously impact kids negatively and confuse them, so teach them to be able to communicate the fact that they are left handed. Children in our current educational system often are not taught how to correctly hold their pencil. Many right handed kids can figure it out just fine but because positioning is a bit trickier for lefties, they may be more likely to develop bad habits that will make it harder for them to grasp and control the pencil as they get older and the writing demands increase.
This should also help them smudge their writing less. Lefties are fully capable of grasping the pencil as maturely and efficiently as righties. Just flip your right-handed scissors upside down in order to switch the blade orientation.
Righties tend to angle the right corner of their paper up, and lefties should do the same with the left side. It places their writing arm in a natural position to be able to write on the lines as they move from left to right without having to excessively hook their wrist.
When they finish writing across an entire line, their hand should either be slightly to the left of their midline or just in front of it.
This allows them to move more naturally as they keep their wrist straight rather than hookedminimize smudging while writing, and see what they are writing.
Teachers do not always explicitly teach children to stabilize their paper with their non-dominant hand and, for some reason, this is especially true for lefties. The more consistently they stabilize their paper, the less likely it is to slide around and cause frustration while writing.
Most worksheets place the model letter or word on the left side and then leave a blank space on the right for the student to write the letter or word.
This is difficult for lefties because their left arm automatically covers up the model, so it may take them longer to complete or may lead to more mistakes because the model is covered up the majority of the time. Not fair to them!
This will help him with his overall speed and fluency of writing later on down the road. This is really just to make it less likely that they will tear the paper but if they are able to draw those little lines from left to right like righties, it will also help their writing speed and fluency in the long run.
Regardless of whether your child is left handed or right handed, kids in the preschool years should be focusing mostly on fine motor play as opposed to actually using a pencil and writing letters.
Be sure to focus on activities that encourage him to pinch with his thumb and index finger strengthening those tripod musclescoordinate the use of his right and left hands together cutting goes in this categoryand generally develop the foundational fine motor strength and skill needed for later writing.
Additionally, short non-pencil tools are preferred because they help develop that good tripod grasp by naturally encouraging children to pinch with those tripod fingers rather than using additional fingers or a fisted grasp.
I hope these tips are helpful for you and your child as you dive into the world of left handed writing. Please share any additional tips in the comments below!Jun 02, · It's now incredibly easy to become a published author, but that doesn't mean anyone is going to buy your book.
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