Sunday, 14 June 2009

Triangular Crayons - An Easy Tool to Better Writing

Help your child with his / her pencil grip with these colourful triangular crayons.

A common reason for referral to occupational therapy is to assist with writing. One of the first factors an occupational therapist will look at is how does the child hold his or her pencil, pencil crayon or crayon when writing and drawing.

The type of grip used is important both for speed of writing and to protect the hand. The type of pencil grip that is most conducive to neat handwriting, carried out at a good pace, with appropriate pressure is the tripod grip, with the writing implement held between the thumb and first fingers and balanced on the middle finger, as seen in the image below.

There are many factors that affect a child's ability to write correctly, including muscle tone, fine motor skills, co-ordination and muscle strength of the small muscles in the hand, co-ordination of hand - eye and more.

If your child is having difficulty, an evaluation by a qualified occupational therapist would be beneficial. If you would like to find out whether your child requires an evaluation or occupational therapy for writing, please contact Shoshanah.

In the meantime, an easy way to help your child is to purchase triangular shaped crayons and pencils. This helps the child to hold the pencil or crayon correctly until such time as they can do so independently.

Some children love the triangular shape, others want to switch to the regular round crayons or even to try and persuade their parents to let them use markers. If your child is experiencing difficulty with writing and drawing, you as a parent need to help your child. A good way to do so is by using only the triangular shaped crayons, pencil crayons and pencils and no markers. Put aside the round ones until your child is able to hold the writing implements correctly. Markers in general should be avoided until a child has mastered his/her basic writing and drawing skills.

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