Mar 9, 2011

The best pencil grip for my lefty

Some things you just don't know, until you do. Like riding a bicycle - to those who don't know how to, it's a miracle how two wheels can stay upright. But once you know, well, it's just like...riding a bicycle.

I'm teaching Number Two how to hold a pencil correctly, but he keeps pinching it between his thumb and index finger. I know how to hold a pencil, but how do you teach someone else to hold a pencil?

As usual, I ask Google. Youtube has some rhymes about the process of holding a pencil. There is also a video which suggests the child be handed a pencil and that swinging it 180 degrees helps get at the right hold. Tried them, didn't work.

Some people prescribe holding something (a coin or a tissue) in the last two fingers, therefore 'tricking' the first three fingers to grip the pencil properly. Tried it, but all that does is get the last two fingers out of the way - it still doesn't ensure a proper tripod grip for the first three fingers.

I read that for smaller fingers, ergonomics mean that a bigger pencil is needed to get at the right grip. So I bought fat crayons. Better, but still not right grip.

Then I stumble upon pencil grips that help guide the fingers. But there are more than half a dozen brands in the market - which grip? The Stetro has good reviews on Amazon, but this reviewer says the Stetro is not quite good for the left-handed. In the end, I opt to try a Solo grip, a Crossover grip and a triangle-shaped pencil, and order them online.

Number Two has gravitated to the Crossover, calling it his jelly because of its soft, mushy texture. I like it best too. It's really intuitive, and fits better on the pencil.

pencil grip crossover

The Solo takes a bit more thinking, and may also be a bit too big for a pre-schooler's hands. It was also loose and kept sliding up and down the pencil. This prompted Itchy Fingers to attempt to remove it from the pencil altogether!

pencil grip solo

The triangular-shaped pencil is not too bad an option if a pencil grip isn't available, but isn't as intuitive and doesn't ensure the correct grip.

pencil grip triangle

After a few days of using the grip, I think he is holding a pencil better now, even without the grip in place.

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