Mom-to-Mom Support/My son is left-handed. Are there special penmanship instructions for “lefties”?

My son is left-handed. Are there special penmanship instructions for “lefties”?


I used CHC’s kindergarten curriculum for my 6-year-old son this year and will be doing your 1st grade curriculum with him in the fall. I noticed that he seems to be left-handed and wondered if I needed to do anything special or different in teaching him handwriting. I myself am right-handed and have no experience with how left-handed people are taught to write, but I have heard that there are some special problems/issues involved. Do you have any advice?

Dear Parent,

Thank you for your question! If you take a look at Catholic Heritage Handwriting you will find that the books are designed with spiral binding at the top, specifically to make writing easier for “lefties.”

Lefties often have difficulty with smudging as their hand passes over what has just been written. One way of reducing this problem is to avoid the softer-leaded #2 pencil, opting instead for a harder #3 pencil.

Another trick to facilitate writing is to tell the student to aim the top of his pencil at his left shoulder, keep his upper arm close to his body, and tilt his paper to the right. Also, he should grip the pencil about two inches away from the lead. I know that this seems strangely high up on the pencil, but the grip moves the child’s hand up and away from what he is writing, which permits him to view the letters as he forms them. All of these tricks will improve the child’s penmanship.

Thanks for your question, and may God bless and guide your school year.

Nancy Nicholson

About Nancy Nicholson

Nancy Nicholson is one of the founding authors of Catholic Heritage Curricula. Equipped with an abundance of God-given talent, a major in Secondary Education–English, and years of experience homeschooling her own children, she has written over thirty educational titles, beginning with Little Stories for Little Folks. Her unique ability to develop programs and workbooks that “fit” both advanced and struggling students is due to her experience raising children of different ability levels and learning styles: two of her children are developmentally challenged, while another went on to graduate from Harvard and is now a college professor.