Thursday, April 26, 2012
Let's Try Scissors
Let's take a little break from writing. We want to start with scissor skills. We can't tell you how many parents tell us that their child is not allowed to use scissors at home. There are many reasons; the parent's fear of injury, a younger sibling in the house, etc. Parents: IT IS OK FOR YOUR CHILD TO USE SCISSORS (under close supervision, of course)! We like child-sized scissors as they fit better on small hands and are easier to open/close than adult scissors. For those parents afraid of a finger being cut of(which almost never happens- just kidding- never saw it happen), there are rounded-edged varieties. There are also adapted varieties if your child is unable, after practice, to use regular, children's scissors. For these, you should contact an OT to assess which best fits your child's needs. Ok, so, let's begin with proper scissor use. Children should have their thumb in one hole and their index and middle fingers in another hole. Thumb should be up when cutting. One trick to remind children to keep their thumb up is to put a sticker, or draw a smiley face, on their thumb nail. Tell you child he/she should always be able to see it when cutting. Start by just snipping paper. You can prompt your child by saying "open/close". You can also help your child hold the paper with his other hand by placing your hand over his/her hand. It is important, though, that you do not hold the paper for your child, as he needs to get used to holding it on his/her own. Once your child is a pro-snipper, start to progress his/her scissors across a paper. Next, have him/her cut on top of lines, then cut out shapes. Cutting takes LOTS of practice to perfect. Have him/her "help" you cut out coupons (of course, not ones you actually need, unless he/she is a pro). Cut play doh. Kids usually enjoy using scissors, so allow them many opportunities to practice.