Monday, May 14, 2012
Left-hand dominant children and writing
We’ve had a request to address children who are left-hand dominant and the difficulties that they face when learning to write. As we know, left-hand dominant children make up a small minority of children. Typical classrooms are right-hand oriented, presenting unnecessary difficulties for the left-hand dominant child. Left-hand dominant children have additional challenges when learning to write. As their hand progresses across the paper, they cover the letters that they have already written, presenting spacing problems as well as possible smearing of previously written letters. These children will not have the visual guidance of being able to see the letters that they have already written in order to form a word. Some of these children will develop strange grip patterns in an attempt to see what it is that they have already written.
So, how do you, as parents or practitioners, assist the child to develop good writing skills using their left hand? First, try repositioning the paper so that he/she will use a good grip while being able to see the letters that were previously written. Practice prewriting lines and shapes using this paper positioning. Have the child draw squiggly lines and shapes.