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Re: Teaching Left-Handed Calligraphy


From: Bunki Kramer (bkramer_at_TeacherArtExchange)
Date: Tue May 14 2002 - 20:19:50 PDT

from: Bunki Kramer (
Los Cerros Middle School
968 Blemer Road
Danville, CA 94526
I just started teaching a 2-week crash course in calligraphy to a group of
4th graders. I happened to get one left-handed student in this class. I
have never had a left-handed student in all my years teaching calligraphy.
Does anyone have any suggestions in how to teach left-handed. I received a
suggestion from someone at an art store to turn the paper so that the pen
would be at the 45-degree angle that is needed. Another one is to cut the
pen tip to an angle (We are using felt tip pens.) Any other suggestions? I
will be teaching 3 other groups of 4th graders in the next few weeks and I
am bound to have more "lefties". Anything would help. Thanks in advance.
Beth in Colorado ---

Hi, Beth. I'm a left-handed calligrapher and I've taught lefties too. The
absolute BEST thing to do is leave them alone. Lefties are famous for
learning it backwards, etc. and it's a "built-in" thing that all lefties
have acquired since they had a rattle put into their right hand. Just as
"righties" find their own style of calligraphic writing, so will the
"lefties". You won't need to buy diff. nibs or pens or cut anything
different. Some lefties will automatically turn their paper, some will cock
their wrists...all the things lefties do when they do normal writing. I've
personally tried the left-handed pens and nibs and find them more of a
problem than the regular pens.

My advice is to sit back and relax and not worry about making a big deal of
it with the kids. Actually...I find being left-handed an advantage because
you can see better where you're goin'.