Teacher training – comments on our article
– Views on left-handed equipment at school
We posted an article about Teacher Training and Left handed Children in March 2012 and received a huge response, with over 200 comments totalling some 30,000 words and hundreds of emails – this is certainly the biggest response to anything we have ever posted.
We got a lot of comments on left-handed equipment and the lack of it plus the fact that where it was available teachers did not show the left-handed students how to use it properly.
There were lots of comments on this so here is a representative selection. This is one that really frustrates us when we hear of teachers assuming left-handers should just use right-handed scissors and there is no difference. They really should know that as a left-hander you need to have the blades reversed so the top blade in on the left and you can see your cutting line without having to twist the scissors to see over the top and then manipulate them to make the blades squeeze together to cut without tearing (see our video explaining this here).
What is even more frustrating is where left-handed scissors ARE provided but the teachers do not know how to use them and the students end up trying to use them like a right-handed scissors so can’t make them work anyway. They are then left as being completely hopeless and unable to use right-handed OR left-handed scissors.
It is not that hard – just hold the left-handed scissors in the left hand, relax and squeeze the handles together, looking at the cutting line on the RIGHT side of the scissors. Of course, if you are cutting out a circle or curved shape you need to go ANTI-Clockwise!
- I was never taught to use left-handed scissors and now I can’t use them but I did make sure they were available for my child and for kids at school who needed them
Many years ago, when I was in Kindergarten, I remember that left-handed SCISSORS were never available in class. It was frustrating trying to use right-handed ones (they just folded the paper as I tried to cut). My teacher told me I was just being difficult and I didn’t need different scissors. Craft time often turned to tear time.
I was ecstatic when I got my first pair of left handed dress making scissors as an adult and found that the handles did *not* cut into my thumb and fingers as right handed scissor handles do.
Because of the lack of left handed scissors in my early years I learned how to cut somewhat horribly with my right hand and my handwriting is horrible.
I was delighted when I discovered left handed scissors as an adult. I love it when right handers struggle to use my left handed gadgets – my favourite response is now you know what it’s like being left handed trying to use right handed thingsâ€
- The first truly lefthanded lecture hall desk (surface attached to chair) was due to a lawsuit filed in Mayfield Hts, Ohio, a suburb of Cleveland, Ohio. Now there is one in each row in most university lecture halls.
- I found this in College and even now when I go to courses as a grown-up – there are chairs with a table attached and every single one is for a right handed person. In fact I don’t think I have ever seen a left handed one which means I have to write either on my lap or find a table to use.
- I am a university lecturer and being mainly left handed am very conscious of the issue raised about right hand only attached tables to chairs. I got my classes to raise this as a complaint through the official channels and now left handed variants are being supplied in small numbers to rooms. The chair covers are usually of a different colour as well allowing for easy of recognition.
- I agree there needs to be more attention paid to helping left-handed children because growing up there were no left-handed desks in classes and if there were the teachers were oblivious to it and gave them to right-handed students. There was no left-handed anything growing up.
We have covered left-handed pens under the writing comments page.
If you have anything to add, please leave a comment using the box below.
Links to the other pages of results from this project so far:
Detailed Comments on teacher training and left-handed children
Equipment problems (scissors, desks, computers, other items)