Written by Sarah O’Reilly of http://www.whiteleysoffice.co.uk/, an office furniture specialist based in Kent and renowned for providing a high-quality, full project management service for all types of office design.
Around 10-12% of the worldwide population is known to be Left-handed, making lefties in the astounding minority. However handedness is not always a gift or a curse, it just makes getting used to certain tools a little harder for children! Whether you or your partner is left-handed, by some strange stroke of chance your child has started to exhibit left-handed tendencies; gripping the pencil in his or her left hand, using the left hand to do many tasks and so forth.
When it comes to schooling and education for your child, you may have to think about buying them some left-handed friendly equipment so that they can easily adjust to school life without having the odds turned against them (or their hand!).
This may not seem like a big deal, but when you’re five or six years old and you’ve just finished painstakingly writing your name on a piece of paper in bold, colourful letters, only to make a right pig’s ear of it by crimpling and ripping the paper instead of being able to cut it like the other children do, it can get very frustrating very quickly. These minor annoyances are things that right handed people take for granted, but it can really start to grate on you.
Kit your child out properly for his or her new school with this selection of left-handed friendly office tools which helps them to celebrate and nurture their difference.
Left-handed scissors are an essential part of any pencil case! It is likely that your child will be doing a lot of cutting and sticking, particularly in primary school, whether it is mixing and matching shapes, putting together a project or even making a cardboard diorama. Classrooms do provide left handed scissors, but often they are few and far between and are old and grubby. Provide your child with a fresh (and safe) pair of left-handed scissors so that they are never left out.
- Notepads, Journals and Portfolios
Spiral bound notepads can be the biggest perpetrators when it comes to annoying left handers, as there seems to be no comfortable place to put your hands when writing in said notepads, apart from the centre of the page! Left-handed spiral bound notepads are designed to open to the right, with the spiral on the right hand side. You could always just flip the notepad upside down, but your rules may be a little skewed as well.
The same principle works for folders and portfolios. It may look strange at first but it certainly saves your child’s hands from enduring metal imprint marks from the notepad or folder whenever they have to write or take notes down in any detail!
- Pens and Ink Pens
Graphite pencils and ink pens are often the bane of existence for left-handed people. Ink pens can help people to create beautiful calligraphy and were the staple in Victorian England, however they are simply not designed for left-handed people. Ball-roller pens are also a little awkward, as the way left-handed people write forces the ball to roll in the opposite direction, meaning the ink can come out in splurts and splatters.
Buying special gel pens and rollerballs designed to be used by left-handed people use quick drying ink so that there are no smudges caused by your hand. There is even a collection of soft grip pens designed to help children find the most comfortable way of writing with a pen!
- Home Desks
Particularly at University lectures, you can get those weird wrap around desks which makes it very hard for left-handed people to write comfortably without twisting their wrist around or arching their spine awkwardly so that they can properly rest their arm upon the desk. While this is unavoidable in schools, there are a number of desks designed for home use that are friendly to both left-handed and right-handed people. Shop around!
- Tech Accessories Cases
Phone cases and tablet cases often open out to the left. In some instances this is no problem, as the case will easily fold behind the phone or tablet, but it can get frustrating. With specially designed left-handed tools, the cases fold out to the right, leaving your left hand unhindered from the bulky case!
All in all, being left-handed does not disadvantage your child in any way. They’re not going to have trouble concentrating, or learning how to spell or write if they are left-handed. It is just that the tools of the trade can get a little frustrating to use for left-handed people. And this doesn’t just stop at writing tools; clashing elbows at dinner, using a can opener and even shaking hands can be a little awkward for left-handers! However you choose to look at it, there is nothing wrong with a left-handed child; it can just get a little awkward to use right-handed tools at times!