Let us start with facts. This is kind of a serious topic because ‘left’ has not always had the best connotations.
Well, here is the thing.
Being left-handed is absolutely, 100%, without a doubt normal.
So if your child is left-handed, there is no need for you to think something is ‘wrong.’ Because there absolutely is not. Ignore the internet mumbo-jumbo. Or the cultural stigma. Or the many, many, many myths that surround being a lefty. Left does not mean bad. And right does not mean good. They are just natural preferences.
Anyway, lefties are good. And handedness does not really matter in the grand scheme of things. All that matters is you provide your leftie baby with the kind of support and guidance they really need.
Here is how you can do that for your left-handed child.
How to teach a left-handed child to write: tips and tricks
Yep, the one thing being a lefty can make is difficult is writing. The positioning of the hand is such that it can often cover what your left-handed child is writing.
But worrying will not be an effective solution to this problem. There are simple, clever ways and techniques by which you can resolve your query of ‘how to teach a left-handed child to write letters’. Pretty effectively too, might we add.
Let us explore!
- Show them how to hold a pencil right
- Improve their writing position
- Get ‘made for lefties’ equipment
- Show them how to angle their writing paper
- Make them all of their reading/writing materials on the left
- Make them keep books on top of the writing pad
- Show them how to write the letters
No, not in the right hand. But in the right way.
The tripod grasp is the way your left-handed child should be holding their pencils so they can see what they write.
The way this stance works is by pinching the pencil with the index finger and the thumb. And your child then uses their middle finger to rest the pencil on. Practising this tripod grasp technique will make it easier for your child to write legibly. Not to mention it will also increase their speed so they can write faster!
Once your baby gets in the habit of the tripod grasp, take it to the next level. Which means get their hand positioning straight.
Part of the ‘how to teach a left handed child to write letters’ process, for this one you will have to get your child to move their fingers higher up when holding the pencil. That means no more holding it by the tip.
Since this way their wrists will be angled, they will no longer have to peep over their own fist to see what they have written. It will automatically improve the visibility of the text they write, no sweat.
And that is not the only benefit of your lefty baby holding their pencil this way! It also prevents smudges. So it is a total win-win!
Remember though, your child may forget to do this each time. So be sure you are sitting with them when they practise writing. Then you will be able to give them gentle reminders to improve their writing skills and position.
Whether it is about how to teach a left-handed child to write or help them do arts and crafts, getting specialised equipment can come in handy (pardon the pun!). But only if a therapist recommends it. So for this one, consultation is key.
See you do not have to get a special pencil as there is not any like that. But you can definitely get a pair of scissors that is easier for your lefty baby to grasp. Not only are the blades positioned differently, but the finger holes are also adapted for left-handed use. This kind of scissor will surely prevent any accidents or ‘oops’ moments which can happen if your child uses a right-handed scissor.
Paper positioning is so neat! It will make it super easy for your lefty child to write neat and clean letters. Just make sure the left corner of their writing paper points upwards. Encourage them to use this paper positioning every time they write. This angle will come so naturally to them that it will become a part of their muscle memory fast enough! Plus, it prevents their wrists from getting sore. So that is a bonus! And it makes writing from left to right a lot easier.
When all of their writing material is on the left side of your child, it is easier for them to reach. Again, just comes more naturally to them. Also, it is easier for them to see the paper they are writing on when it aligns with the left side of their body. So that’s that.
Keep an eye out on the position of their hand when your child is done writing. Ideally, it should be to the left or in the middle. Just to keep things natural and instinctive and comfortable.
Copying is a big part of early education! Which means there will be a lot of times when your left-handed child will need additional textbooks on their table as do their homework. Or classwork.
So again to keep things comfortable, teach your left-handed child to keep all of their books on top of their notebook. At a slightly higher level too, ideally. This way, they will not have to bend to see their textbooks. This should become a habit.
Letter writing techniques should be exactly the same for your left-handed child as they are for right-handed children. Which means anticlockwise Os. Also, have them pull the lines of their letters slightly backwards. It will make it easier for them to cross their Ts and dot their Is.
How do I know if my child is left-handed and are there signs?
Ah that cliched ‘million dollar question’! Did you know that your child can actually start showing a preference for their right or left hand while in the womb? And that preference can actually carry on to when they come out into this world!
When they turn three, notice which hand they put in their mouth. If it is their left-hand majority of the time, you have got your cue. Also when they turn 18 months old, you will see a clear hand dominance. Plus, in the case of left-handedness, it could also be genetics at play. All of this is the key to “how do I know if my child is left-handed”.
Being a left-handed child can be slightly difficult because you are not part of the ordinary right-hand run of the mill. Hence, as parents it is very important that you let your child’s teachers know that they are left-handed. So teachers too can offer the same encouragement and support you do. Like we do at EuroKids! Our trained teachers are adept at handling left-handed children too, ensuring they grow and learn just as well as right-handed children do. Would you like to know more about EuroKids? Visit us then!