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comalley7
comalley7 asks:
Q:

left handed children and printing

My daughter is a "lefty" and when she prints, she usually starts from the bottom and goes up?  Is this a "lefty" thing or do right handed kids do it too?  Also, will she grow out of it?
In Topics: Helping my child with writing
> 60 days ago

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Expert

Sylvia HS
Mar 15, 2009
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What the Expert Says:

Hi,

I've been a teacher/reading specialist for 39 years, and I've seen many, many kinds of printing from thousands of students.  Also, I'm left-handed myself!

When children are starting to print, they form their letters in many different ways, whether they're left-handed or right-handed.  All children need to be trained to form letters in the simplest way possible.  These are ways that are understood to be the easiest ways, with formations going from top to bottom, and from left to right.  The reason they are thought of as easiest is that English printing goes from left to right, and English handwriting flows more easily from printing if students have learned top to bottom movements, and then they can join letters for handwriting more easily.  Kindergarten and grade one teachers are usually very careful to teach their students in these "correct" ways; however, I've seen many students who don't use those ways.

I suppose the most important thing for me is to try to teach children to use these correct motions and then they will develop those motions as habits.  It's easier to teach those habits in kindergarten and grade one, than it is to try to change students once they're older, and have developed awkward habits.

I would ask your child's teacher if she or he has a letter/number formation chart, with arrows showing directionality of movement for each letter and number.  That way you can do the same motions at home that your child is being taught at school.  I would also make a small letter/number formation chart for your child to look at when she's working at home.  You'll be helping her to develop consistent habits when she prints.


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Additional Answers (1)

lravidlearner
lravidlearner , Teacher, Parent writes:
I'm a lefty too (as well as a teacher), and I learned to form the letters the way I was taught.... or else!

My daughter is right-handed, now 12, and prints her letters in what looks to me like a very contorted fashion.  But her handwriting is legible, she can write quickly, and in the end, that's all that matters.

Your daughter is still learning, but if it works for her, you can read it, and it doesn't take a lot of extra time, then she's good to go!
> 60 days ago

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