Get a Grip: Pencil Grasp Progression

As a child scribbles and draws, they transition how they hold their writing tool from age to age. The development of the writing grip in young children follows a predictable course: 

Primitive Grip

At around 1-2 years, children commonly begin by holding a writing tool with a primitive grip (also known as a fisted or cylindrical grasp). 

This is when they hold a marker in a closed fist with movement coming from the shoulder. This makes it easy for a child to scribble in circular, vertical, and horizontal motions. 

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You’re Re-Mark-able! A Super Simple Valentine’s Day Card Activity

You're Re-Mark-able! Valentine Activity

For Valentine’s Day, we send our family members greeting cards since they live far away. Rather than just send them a signed card, we have our son, A, put his personal touch in them with drawings and stickers. They enjoy it as they get to see his pre-writing skills improve as he grows. Try out this super simple activity too with your little ones.


  • Valentine’s Day Greeting Cards
  • Markers, crayons, or pens
  • Optional: Stickers or stamps
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X’s and O’s: All About Handwriting Readiness

All About Handwriting Readiness

Children scribble. Children draw. Children explore, get messy, and climb on things. All of these build the skills necessary for handwriting. 

The moment a child has a writing tool in their hand, their first inclination is to make marks with it. As they mature, they create intentionally meaningful drawings and scribbles which later turn into letters and words.

As children begin to learn how to write letters, they start developing pathways in the brain necessary for reading. In fact, research shows that 2- and 3-year-olds can distinguish writings from drawings, and that children at the age of 4 can recognize that printed words have meaning that can be decoded.

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