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You need to teach your child to use his right hand, otherwise he will have big problems when learning to write.

(61 Posts)
justaphase Tue 27-Feb-07 20:44:52

My ds is only 16 months so it is probably too early to draw conclusions but he seems to prefer his left hand when holding a spoon or a crayon or whatever.

I mentioned this to another mum and she reckons it is really important to teach a child to use one hand, preferably the right but could also be the left if there is strong preference. She said it was really bad to leave him to it as she has seen children really struggle too write and get completely confused about which hand they should be using.

Never heard of this before.... any opinions? All our family is right-handed so we have no experience of this at all but I was thinking of just letting him be to be honest.

gothicmama Tue 27-Feb-07 20:46:14

no let it be at that age they use both hands and it is only later they develop a preference - it is a ver old fashioned view children should be taught to be right handed

fairyfly Tue 27-Feb-07 20:47:24

Nooooooo way, i am left handed and it really would have messed me up if i was made to use the other. Silly silly old fashioned view. Tell them to behave.

Waswondering Tue 27-Feb-07 20:48:40

I'm left handed and have never had any problems!! Write fairly legibly too, and went on to do a degree in English - which required quite a lot of writing over the years!

Dd is only 9m but still reaches with her left hand for things, rather than her right. Very excited by that! Mum is also a leftie, as is mil (!) so she has a lot of left genes!!

Let him be. He'll be fine!

Abwab Tue 27-Feb-07 20:50:23

i am left handed and as far as i know i didn't have any trouble learing to right. My DS 2.5 is showing leftie tendencies and i'm happy to go with that (plus he has a mean left footed kick which pleases DH no end )

roisin Tue 27-Feb-07 20:51:17

Occasionally some children arrive at school (aged 4 or 5) without a clear preference, and this can cause some delays with learning letter formation if they don't consistently use the same hand. (My niece is like this). But I don't think there is any research to suggest that being ambidextrous has any longterm disadvantages.

But in any case it certainly isn't something to worry about until they get to school.

Abwab Tue 27-Feb-07 20:51:29

obviously didn't fair so well on the spelling though - Write not right!!!

divastropwantstodrop Tue 27-Feb-07 20:52:56

my ds2 had an obvious preference for his left hand from about 12m,i just left him to it.he is now at nursery and his teacher knows he's left-handed,its not a problem.its not like in my day when the left-handed children got told off etc!

fishie Tue 27-Feb-07 20:54:48

this woman sounds quite dotty. does she haunt infant schools looking for children struggling to write? my poor dad was beaten at school for using his lh and then he was beaten again for messy handwriting with his rh. shame on her for perpetuating crap.

CurlyN Tue 27-Feb-07 20:56:06

Leave be, IMO. our DS 5, was all over the shop, left for this, right for that, left and right. Since starting school, he now uses mainly the right. I was the same, although I am RH, there are a lot of other activities I prefer to use left. DP is a leftie as is DS2 3yrs, again DP will play his sport (cricket, golf etc), right-handed. I think you just use what you are comfortable with. There are no rules.

justaphase Tue 27-Feb-07 20:58:14

oh fishie, she is dotty but this is a whole different story

Curly, did your ds have any trouble when learning to write?

CurlyN Tue 27-Feb-07 20:59:09

And I will abd he doesn't/hasn't hab any prodlems with letter formation. except with the obvious ones!

franca70 Tue 27-Feb-07 20:59:51

I'm left-handed, and apart the obvious problems with fountain pens, I've always been fine

JonesTheSteam Tue 27-Feb-07 21:03:15

DD did not have a preferred hand when she started nursery at our primary school.

TBH if you just looked at her letters when she first started writing, there was no discernable difference. But if you actually watched her write them, it was obvious that she was left-handed - much more comfortable holding a pencil, and wrote more fluidly (well, as fluidly as you can at 5 )

It's quite handy though - have watched her colouring in, and when her left hand is tired, she just swaps over to the right.

DH was forced to write with his RH by the nuns at his primary school - writing with your left being the work of the devil 'n' all.

His writing is terrible - he should have been a doctor!!

ComeOVeneer Tue 27-Feb-07 21:03:29

Leave them to find it out for themselves. Both my children are left handed, dd(5) made us think she was from a very early age but would swap all the time. She is now totally left handed and without any inteference from anyone is pretty much top of her class with her writing.

My sister if left alone would probably have been left handed but was forced to be right handed and as such has almost illegible hand writing.

JodieG1 Tue 27-Feb-07 21:04:18

Sounds like rubbish to me, wouldn't take any notice of that.

Inus Tue 27-Feb-07 21:07:24

DS2 will have to be left handed, as he has a congenital deformity with his right hand and will probably find it difficult to wrute with his RH. (although it wouldn't be impossibe)

I can envisage lots of "DS2 could do better with his handwriting" type remarks

ja9 Tue 27-Feb-07 21:12:37




no no no no.

let it be.

all the infant staff in my school would say this and they are very experienced imo.

Lmccrean Tue 27-Feb-07 21:14:24

My dd is almost definately left handed and preschool teacher advised that I tecah her to write before she starts school in September to avoid frustration when her teacher is teaching the whole class to do it righthanded. I dont mind as Im teaching her anyway!

J20BABY Tue 27-Feb-07 21:17:27

when i was at school, the dinner ladies used to try and make me eat the 'right way', i'm left handed and apparantly didn't hold a knife and fork the way a right handed person would!

what a load of bull, let him use which hand he wants!


LEFTIES ARE THE BEST :O

EmsTomot Tue 27-Feb-07 21:17:56

My son is eight months old and from even earlier he has shown a strong preference to his left hand and now, his left leg!!! - He using his right side to pass things to his left and I am not worried about this.
I am left handed, so is his dad, so is my brother and my dad (although he writes with his right hand because they used to tie his left hand behind his back)
Not that I am biased (!) but left handed people tend to be more creative than right handies, who tend to be more focused! - Not sure which one is best! - Would leave it up to your baby!

exbury Tue 27-Feb-07 21:18:41

Leave him to it. DS turned out to be left-handed - the nearest relative who is left handed is my grandfather. We were pretty sure by 16 months, I think - he was fairly ambidextrous, but did new things first with his left hand (right from reaching for things as a small baby). We did nothing, left him to it, and as he started to want to write he just did it with his left hand.

His writing is no worse (and no better!) than most of his peers (he is in reception now) - and no teacher has ever even mentioned it to us, they just get on with it.

Don't interfere, IMHO - if he starts to think too hard about which is the "right" or "wrong" hand to use, that is what will confuse him.

Caligula Tue 27-Feb-07 21:20:41

God some people have got nothing better to do than worry other people have they?

yaddayah Tue 27-Feb-07 21:20:44

my ds (5) is lefthanded, apart from buying him left handed sissors, i've never even though about it ...

pre school and reception have never found it a problem (its written in his school notes but thats about it..

dh is just pleased he can kick a football with both his left and right foot

"he'll play for England that boy.. thats just what the team needs"

pucca Tue 27-Feb-07 21:24:04

You cannot "teach" a child to use the hand not natural to them, it is determined by the brain (i found this out after seeing a neurologist).

I am left handed, and can remember having handwriting lessons with the headteacher in primary school (italic) and he told me i had to write properly (i hold my hand in a curve when i write) or i would have difficulties doing my exams (load of tosh!) i still cannot write "straight" iykwim.

Don't worry about it.

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