My purpose here is to follow up and share one issue from our discussion during the PD session, Writing: A Developmental Skills Approach, that I felt was left dangling. With the use of some wonderful resources, which I will list below, we visited the topic of pencil grip/grasp: the good and the bad. Actually the bad were labeled by our OT experts as "poor" and "awkward" pencil grips. We also looked at the developmental spectrum of pencil grasp. This is important for teachers of writing, particularly in early childhood education, to be aware of. I will also throw out the thought to those who teach reading to consider the grip as a clue when issues with reading comprehension are a concern; however, I stop there, because the relationship between pencil grip and reading is a topic for a PD session, too deep for a blog post. :)
Attendees learned today that along with the traditional "tripod" pencil grip, the "D'Nealian" pencil grip is completely acceptable/functional (see photo above). In our area, schools generally teach Zaner-Bloser style print, and this grip is named for another style of print, D'Nealian, which I have seen taught in other areas. This left me with concerns about crossing grasps with writing styles and wondering if there is a specific reason for this pencil grip to be used with D'Nealian style writing.
I consulted one of my OT resources, and there was a blog post with advice regarding the use of this D'Nealian grasp versus the conventional grasp, which gives some clarity.
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