IS YOUR CHILD HOLDING THE PENCIL RIGHT?

Published on September 4, 2018


girl holding pencil

Pencil skills are significant way in which we communicate. There are many ways in which a child holds a pencil and this can be because of finger and hand strength. Pencil grasp has been an on-going discussion with teachers, parents, and therapists.

An ideal pencil grasp is dependent upon the child’s development.

Some say pencil grasp doesn’t matter while some insist on change. Do you have a child who pushes down too hard on the pages while writing? Do you have a child who writes too lightly on the page? Presses pencil too hard that you can see it through several pages? Each child has their own writing pattern and way to hold the pencil. Grasp patterns develop through play and experiences that children have interacting with their environment and objects they find in their environment.

HOW DO YOU EVALUATE YOUR CHILD’S PENCIL GRASP?

When looking at child’s pencil grasp there are number of things which are considered, how old is the child? Which fingers are they using? What’s the posture like? Speed of the child writing; are fingers controlling the pencil? Position of forearms and wrist?

WHAT MAKES IT GOOD?

The dynamic pencil grasp involves the thumbs opposed to the index and the third finger with all three fingers position in a tripod on the pencil with the fourth and fifth finger stabilized against the writing surface. A pencil grasp is any grasp that produces output on the paper whether that is scribble for a toddler, legible or messy handwriting for a school age child or adult. The dynamic tripod grasp is considered as the suitable grasp to hold the pencil by child as it improves handwriting and does not stresses your wrist and elbows.

Fine motor skills involve the use of smaller muscle of the hands in performing common table top tasks. This is why it is important to have sufficient strength in fingers and hands. It also helps in appropriate pencil grasp and movement which helps in the performance and a good handwriting.

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