Wednesday, March 13, 2013

Left Handed or Right Handed??

It's been so interesting watching our girls over the last year and a half (if not longer) ... from the beginning as they would scribble on their Magna Doodles or with chunky crayons on construction paper. Watching their hands as I attempted to peak their interest in writing letters or drawing shapes; I would notice which hand they would hold their pens, pencils and crayons. I remember a period when L would randomly switch her writing utensil from one hand to another trying to figure it out. 

I never interrupted this process of letting her figure out for herself which hand her pencil "felt right in." Once this became clear to me that she was going to be left handed, this is when I began to teach her how to hold her pencil/pen/marker/crayon properly. Every now and again she will try to switch (I do think she does this, because when I show how to write or draw something, I show her with my right hand). I'll gently remind her to switch hands, that she writes with her left hand. 

Today I realized that over the last 2 months I have been interrupting this process with M. When we sit down to do a craft or activity M will sometimes hold her pencil in her left hand. I've been correcting her, remember, you write with your right hand... WHAT WAS I THINKING? Well, I was thinking she holding her pencil and trying to write with her left hand just because L was. I've been interrupting her process of figuring this out on her own! Her figuring out which hand her pencil "felt right in." 

This afternoon I was taking a break, sitting on the couch watching the girls play. M was drawing faces and proudly showing me her work. L wasn't actually drawing faces or any pictures at this 26 months. Truthfully, it's just been within the last month that L has been drawing pictures. Real distinguishable pictures! M is starting this process very early in comparison. I believe this is because she see's L doing it and is really trying on her own.  I sit down (often) and draw with them too! 

But today as I was watching M draw, I noticed she would draw a face or two with one hand, switch hands then draw a few more faces. This triggered my mind, this is what made me remember L going through this process. It was most likely around this same time last year; As I've known she's absolutely left handed for several months now. I've been interrupting her process!! 

Some things you read about this says this could be obvious as early as 6-9 months. Most of the time, you can tell around 2-3 years old. But some little ones use both hands equally until they are around 5. I'm so glad I realized sooner rather than later what I was doing and that I need to stop!!! I won't interrupt this any longer until it's noticably obvious that she is right or left handed!


  1. I never dictate which hand my little girl uses when she draws or plays, as I feel it is up to the child to decide, but my ex mother-in-law is from that generation where left handed people were evil, so she always forces Miss K to use her right hand. I just don't have the heart to tell her to back off and let the child decide.

  2. It was clearly obvious that L was left handed. When we began writing letters, I was showing her how to properly hold a pencil. That makes a difference when you're writing/learning to write. This is the only reason I said anything at all. Before she was 3 she had a great interest in learning to write. So I fed her interest. :)