All I See is U: Visual Perception and How it Affects Handwriting

When it comes to handwriting, we have found that vision is one of the most overlooked and underestimated systems in children. We’ve been taught that if a child has 20/20 vision, they do not have a visual issue that will affect their academic performance. But in truth, children who have difficulties processing and perceiving what they see still quietly struggle in school. 

Visual perception is the total process responsible for receiving and interpreting what we see. This allows us to make accurate judgments within our environment such as size, configuration, and spatial relationships of objects.

To do this, our visual-receptive components and visual-cognitive components must work efficiently. If one of these areas is compromised, it will affect how a child understands and responds to visual information.

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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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