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.
• 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.