Lefties at School
Left-handed children have particular problems in learning basic
skills using the wrong tools. These problems are easily overcome
with some sensible guidance and use of simple left-handed
implements, but they often get neither and end up with an unfair
reputation as being slow, awkward and clumsy as a result!
Difficulties include cutting out simple shapes using scissors.
Left-handed scissors have the blades reversed so that the child can
the cutting line and so that the natural squeezing movement of the
left hand pushes the blades together to make them cut rather than
pushing them apart so that the card or paper gets stuck sideways
inside the blades.
Left-handed writing requires a correct grip and
correct paper positioning. If they are made to write like
right-handers, but using their left hand, they often end up with a
very cramped position and a "hook" writing style that is painful
and slow - not great for exams in later life! As children start to
use ink pens, a left-handed nib cut-off in the correct direction is
essential if they want to avoid a blotty mess.
Even simple things like sharing a desk can be made
complicated - always put the left-hander on the left-side of the
shared desk or there will be clashing elbows and arguments all
There is now a trend to use whiteboards in class,
with wipeable pens. Left-handers have a real challenge to use these
without wiping off what they have just written as they go along.
Tilting the board to the right should help, but is not always easy
|Left-handers sometimes slip naturally into mirror-writing
flowing from right to left and perfectly readable to them (or to
anyone with a mirror). Famous examples of this were Leonardo da
Vinci and Lewis Carroll