According to the BBC approximately 10% of the world population is left-handed. and here are some important tips on how you can help left-handers write neatly.

Left-handed children can find skills more difficult because they cannot easily use some of the right-handed equipment they are given and they can become labelled as clumsy, awkward, or difficult. Left-handed children may have trouble when they start learning to write and unless they are taught the correct skills it is easy for them to smudge their work and make a mess.

Despite these complications, the Magic Link handwriting programme has been widely proven to teach neat flowing handwriting. Letter formation and letter direction is taught in exactly the same way as right-handers and produces unprecedented, fantastic results.

Comfortable Pen/ Pencil Shape

To help left-handers write neatly it is vital for both left and right-handers to use a triangular shaped pen or pencil. This promotes a good grip to makes handwriting easier to control. The triangular barrel helps to keep the fingers bent so they remain in a comfortable position and allow a clearer vision of the page. Recommended stationary can be seen on the Magic Link website link.

HOw to help left-handers write neatly
Selection of recommended triangular-shaped pens and pencils

Good Pen and Pencil Grip

Another crucial way to help left-handers write neatly is to ensure correct positioning of the fingers; The pen or pencil should be held about 3cm from the point with a relaxed grip to enable left-handed children to write more efficiently. Holding the pencil higher makes it easier to see previous letters and words on the line. The pen or pencil should be held using frog’s legs fingers and keeping a slight gap between the 2 fingers to avoid a wraparound thumb.

How to help left handers write neatly

Awareness of Paper Position

Many left-handed people have issues with smudging and getting ink on their hands. This results in hands getting covered in ink or pencil- lead and causing writing to become smudged and hard to read. When a left-hander hooks their wrist to write, their hand may become cramped and letters cannot flow easily.  If the page is straight the wrist may obstruct vision resulting in the writer blocking out previous words on the line and not being able to proof-read.

In order to prevent the wrist from touching the letters, left-handers must tilt the top left-hand corner of the page higher at an angle and try to keep their wrist under the line.  The angle that the paper is tilted will vary according to individual children and enables them to see what they are writing. The paper should be tilted slightly, at around 30 to 45 degrees, not at a 90-degree angle where the paper appears sideways. To allow a clear vision, the wrist should be straight (not bent) and the writing hand should be below the writing line.

The Magic Link programme also advises that the thumb of the non-writing hand i.e. the right hand should always be parallel to the writing hand and placed at the edge of the page. This thumb has the function of serving to keep the paper in position and prevent the page from sliding around.

how to help left handers write neatly

Correct Letter Formations

Left-handers must learn how to form their letters in a consistent direction in order to write neatly. Letter formation in the Magic Link programme is taught the same as for right-handers. Instructions are presented in a clear and structured way. Many left-handers have learnt bad habits and are confused about where letters should start and end. They must be taught letter directions right from the start, so handwriting becomes comfortable, neat and flowing.

Common Confusing Letters:

The Letter ‘o’

This must be written in an anti-clockwise direction so that the Magic Link ends at the top, ready for joining up. If the ‘o’ is written clockwise, the motor movement will not flow and so connections between other letters will be hard. The anti-clockwise movement must also be used for a capital ‘O’.

How to help left-handers write neatly

The Letter ‘d’. 

This letter often causes confusion for both right and left-handers because of confusion where to start. It is essential to start this letter by writing a ‘c’ shape and then go up to the top line. There is often confusion between the ‘b’ and the d’ and clear guidance and instruction on where to start the’ letter will solve this problem.

How to help left-handers write neatly

The Letters ‘t’and ‘T’

Cross the lower case letter ‘t’ from left to right and ‘move away’ from the margin. This is because this flow goes in the same direction as the flow of the other letters.  Many left-handers have cross the ‘t’ from right to left and it is vital that this is re-learnt to make handwriting smooth and fluent. The same rule applies for a capital ‘T’. Write the top part of the letter from left to right to keep the consistency of direction and flow.

How to write the letter 't' in lower case
How to help left-handers write neatly

Online video instructions

The Magic Link programme is full proof for left-handed writers as well as those who write with their right hand.  Follow the online video course with accompanying colour-coded worksheets. Learn letter formation and combinations to achieve neat, cursive joined up handwriting in 30 simple steps.

For more information see

 left-handers can follow the magic link programme
Follow the 30-step Magic Link handwriting programme