Wednesday, November 12, 2008

Today's Show Brought to You by the Letter...Is That a 3?

Kate has really mastered her letters. She, like her mama, likes to write in all capital letters. If she keeps that up forging letters to school from mom will be much easier than it was for me. I think that's kind of a shame; there was real fun in the mastery of it. Anyway, the thing she does now that's of great interest is this: she writes backwards. Perfectly. For a second I feared she was dyslectic, but no, her letters are all consistently backwards. Often she writes from right to left, too. Always she writes with her left hand.

I asked Kate why she wrote everything backwards. She said simply "because I want to!". I tried to explain to her, in my crunchy liberal mama fashion, not wanting to crush her spirit (that's what school is for) that writing is for communication and if she writes everything backwards people won't know what she's talking about. Except for that midget from Twin Peaks and the little kid from The Shining. She pointed out that I knew what she'd written and I had to concede defeat, there. She'd written "KATE" in roughly 36-size font, but I could tell she wasn't going to be swayed by any argument.

We're more fascinated than worried. I asked her teacher if it was common and she just shrugged it off. "She'll stop eventually" she predicted. I left vaguely dismayed by her teacher's failure to seem curious about what would cause a person to do that. Is she just so worn out by her task to train so many youngsters to write the proper way that there's no time for musings regarding the inner workings of the human brain?

Kate, incidentally, has always favored her left hand. Everything I read said you really can't be sure until the child begins to write, but with her, she never seemed to doubt it was her dominate side. I'll have to read up on the backwards thing. I have seen her execute perfect forward-facing letters as well, so I believe her when she says she's doing it because she wants to. Rebel.

And now for some Cute from this morning.


FlapScrap said...

Could you post a photo of the backwards writing? And could you have her write, "Turn me on, dead man"?

karen said...

Love that pink dress! Think it comes in my size?

Brooklyn Volunteer said...


LMP said...

This came from my friend Jodi, who's Google login isn't working for her:

I have worked at preschool for eight years now, I guess I've worked with about 80 different children and I can tell you that more than 90% (my guess) went through a phase where they wrote their names in well as all three of my children. It is quite fascinating because it would take me a while to figure out how to do it myself. We consistently teach them the proper way to write their names and they eventually stop it. Now I don't know about Kate's preschool but we are very tough on the little ones about correct letter formation and we don't allow the all caps writing. Capital letter at the start of your name and lower case after that...we figure it's easier if we teach them this now and give the kindergarten teachers a break. As for the mirror-image writing, I can't tell you why they do it but most of them do.

Ashley Long said...

My son Kyle is also left handed. He as well knew early on he was left handed. As a baby he reached, grabbed and held with his left hand. Once he started eating with utensils, coloring and painting he used his left. Ever since he has been writing he uses his left. He also writes letters backwards. I too was concerned about dyslexia but I came to the opinion that he is just doing it the way he is seeing it. Ie, from a right handed persons perspective. Like the mirror image thing. Came to me as I was watching him practice t-ball. It seems to me that he sees the act but has a hard time adjusting what he sees to accomidate his left hand.

Sister K said... it to her in the mirror! oooh, a secret code....sweet :) cheers from a fellow lefty! at least w/ so many lefties now days, she won't be the only one in her class trying to find the green handled scissors! lol

FlapScrap said...

I notice Sarah's working that banana (microphone?) with her south paw as well. You may have two special sauce kids, there.

LMP said...

Yes indeedy, Sarah favors the left side, too. But she mimics everything Kate does and she hasn't started writing yet so the jury's still out. (It is a banana.)

Anonymous said...

the jry is a banana but tht dosnt meen thr slantd

Chaotic Joy said...

Oh my goodness the cuteness of that pink dress!

If it makes you feel better I have seen lots of kids write backwards. In fact my niece Hannah wrote backwards for quite a while but it took them a while to notice because her name is Hannah. :)

And this post was hysterical. You are so funny.