Tips on pen posture, sitting posture and sheet position
To make writing easy, it is not only important to master the letters and spelling. The general conditions also determine how relaxed you are when writing.
A good sitting posture relaxes the back and the writing arm
When children - but also adults - are concentrating on writing or drawing, the following picture often appears: the eyes are narrowed, the legs are knotted, and the nose hovers just a few centimeters above the paper. Who hasn't strained their back and neck in this posture? This sitting posture is not only strenuous for the back, it also gets in the way when writing or drawing. For children in particular, the height of the table and chair should be adjusted to the child's height so that they can adopt the most relaxed sitting position possible. Ideally, the feet should touch the floor completely, the back should be upright and the forearms should rest loosely on the tabletop. Knees and elbows should each form about a 90-degree angle. Since children quickly outgrow their clothes and, consequently, their furniture, height-adjustable tables and chairs that can be individually adjusted are a good idea.
Small adjustment, big effect: the right sheet position
If the child is now sitting comfortably at the table, it is important that the writing arm can also move freely. This means that for right-handers, the right part of the desk should be cleared, and for left-handers, the left part. This also applies to the desk lamp: it should be moved to the side of the non-writing hand. This way, the light comes from the opposite direction to the writing hand and no longer casts a shadow on the paper. The different needs of right-handed and left-handed people should be taken into account when choosing the position of the paper. For right-handers, it is advisable to turn the sheet about 30 degrees counterclockwise, for left-handers up to 45 degrees clockwise. With this little trick, what you have just written will no longer be covered and smudged by your own writing hand.
What does good pen posture mean?
But one of the most frequently addressed topics in learning to write is pen posture. As early as kindergarten age, when children are busy drawing and making things, they acquire pencil posture. That's why it's important to use suitable pens and pencils from the very beginning: To encourage a three-finger grip, slightly thicker, triangular pencils that offer orientation and additional grip through grip recesses are suitable. The ideal situation is for the pencil to rest loosely on the middle finger and be held from below and above by the thumb and index finger. In this way, the thumb and index finger can easily move the pen in all directions through a combination of wrist and finger movements, while the middle finger bears the weight of the pen.
Simple, fun exercises make it easy to practice the three-finger grip. Small tip: Children can, for example, be given an eraser to hold in their writing hand with their ring and little finger. This way, only three fingers are available to hold the pencil. However, if children have already acquired a different pencil posture, it is often difficult to relearn it. In this case, the focus should be on optimizing the pen posture used: The pencil should be gripped in a relaxed manner, i.e. the knuckles should not "bend" when holding it. A sign of too much pressure is when the knuckles of the hand already turn completely white. To ensure that the hand has sufficient freedom of movement, the wrist should not be bent, but held as straight as possible.