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What in the World is Hand Dominance?

Published on March 20, 2011 by in Handwriting

Hand dominance is the natural tendency for human beings to favor one hand over the other. It requires coordination of the small muscles in the hand to properly control a writing tool. This

skill facilitates efficient use of the hands. The dominant hand develops skills and precision to perform fine motor tasks while the non-dominant hand supports and assists with the task.

Natural-handedness should be determined before students begin to write. In order to develop hand dominance, teachers need to provide students with opportunities to explore hand preference. As a precursor, students must develop their small muscles, which aid in fine motor skills. The following activities will increase hand strength (Miller and Decker, 1989):

• Tearing paper to make art projects.

• Using plant sprayers to water classroom plants.

• Gathering small objects from around the house (buttons, beans, beads) and placing them in a small container. Students use tweezers or tongs to place the items back into the container.

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• Using a meat baster to have a cotton ball race across the table.

• Using eye droppers to transfer water from one container to another.

• Singing finger play songs and rhymes with your students, using their fingers to act out the rhyme.

• Finger painting with Jell-O on a paper plate.

• Stringing popcorn, buttons and beads to make necklaces.

 
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