Thursday, November 10, 2011

Tips for Handwriting

The following blog has been copied/pasted from the Handwriting Without Tears email that I receive monthly.
I want to give them props because this article below is all theirs.
Not mine.
I'm too tired today to even think of putting a coherent sentence together.
Worked yesterday.
Very busy.
See? I'd rather write in single words than long elaborate sentences!
Just read below, OK.............

4 Steps to Teach Correct Grip
Good habits that begin in early years will last a lifetime—and holding a crayon or pencil correctly is a very important habit.
Awkward grips can cause fatigue, cramping, and even pain—making writing difficult. This problem can be prevented.
The foundation starts with general upper body strength and fine motor skill activities.
Follow these four steps to teach proper grip.

What you see here are the two efficient grips that are universally recommended for children to achieve: the tripod grip and the quadropod grip.

For the tripod grip, the thumb, pointer, and middle finger work together to hold a writing tool.

For the quadropod grip, four fingers work together to stabilize the writing tool. Notice how the pencil rests on the ring finger and this provides additional support.

You might observe children holding their crayon or pencil with too many fingers or placing their thumbs on top of their fingers, or their fingers on top of their thumbs.
If you notice this, you will need to help children form the proper grip to help them with the mechanics of writing and ultimately, to become better writers.

Follow these four steps!

1.Determine Handedness.
Determine the skilled or preferred hand to teach grip.
Notice which hand the child uses more often during activities requiring hand use, for example, eating and stringing beads.
You may want to collaborate with teachers, parents, and therapists, so they too are watching too and can help you decide.

2.Teach correct finger placement.
Show children how to position their fingers on the writing tool, using one of the grips above.

3.Use small tools.
It is important for children to use writing tools that promote the correct use of the thumb, pointer, and middle fingers.
Often, when children are given primary size pencils and crayons, their grip becomes awkward because these tools are too heavy and long for their little hands.

4.Play! Provide creative opportunities for children to develop fine motor skills that are necessary for correct grip, such as scissor activities, manipulating play dough, stringing beads, etc.

I love Handwriting Without Tears!

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