Handy Tips for Writing, Scissors Skills

posted 5/9/24 -- Summer break can be a great time to reinforce key skills your child has been working on in Head Start. Holding a pencil with the proper grip and using scissors safely and correctly are key skills for new kindergarteners.

Head Start works on these skills and has compiled some great information you can access below.

Patience is critical. The X-ray shown here illustrates the difference between a preschoolers hand (left) and the hand of a seven-year-old. Small or fine motor skills such as pencil grip and cutting with scissors develop as the hand grows and strengthens.

Other tips to remember:

  • Pencil grip happens over time and in a series of steps.
  • The correct pencil grip, called the Mature Tripod Grip, may not happen until your child is 5-6 years old.
  • Your Head Start teachers use a program called Learning Without Tears to help children to pick up their writing utensil and position it for correct use.
  • This song will be familiar to our students: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=DP5htYZ5jjQ
  • Scissors skills also take time to develop. The best way to build them is to not even use them! Tearing paper is a necessary first step.
  • It is helpful to start with cutting playdough and then move on to thicker papers like old greeting cards, cardstock and construction paper.
  • Remind your child that holding scissors requires a big “thumbs up!”
  • Use your long summer days to support small motor development by having your child do things such as play with playdough, dig, collect items outside, write with chalk, and throw and catch balls.

Learn more about pencil grip by clicking here

Learn more about scissors use by clicking here