writing upside down/backwards - Mothering Forums
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#1 of 14 Old 01-07-2007, 07:23 PM - Thread Starter
 
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Hello-

My 2.5-year-old is starting to write her name, our names, etc. She often, perhaps usually, writes her letters upside down and backwards. She also often draws things upside down, too - smiley faces, people, etc. Is this normal? Should I just ignore it and it will gradually change, or mention it briefly, or...? Anyone have any experience with this?

TIA
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#2 of 14 Old 01-08-2007, 12:10 AM
 
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My daughter wrote in mirror image for a good length of time. Her pre-school teacher wouldn't correct her and suggested we just let time correct the situation. Over a year went by (ages 3-4) and she never corrected herself until a friend of mine was babysitting and just bluntly told her she was writing the wrong way. She told my dh that she should write the other direction and then it happened. She switched just like that. I told my daughter's teacher what happened and she said she wouldn't be comfortable doing that, but she was glad it worked!! My daughter is both left handed and gifted. I've heard that mirror image writing and similar writing styles are more likely in each of these groups.

No advice... just my story!!
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#3 of 14 Old 01-08-2007, 12:51 AM
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by mcsarahb View Post
Hello-

My 2.5-year-old is starting to write her name, our names, etc. She often, perhaps usually, writes her letters upside down and backwards. She also often draws things upside down, too - smiley faces, people, etc. Is this normal? Should I just ignore it and it will gradually change, or mention it briefly, or...? Anyone have any experience with this?

TIA
My son's dyslexia tutor told me that it was normal for kids to still write backwards at age 5 from time to time, so at 2 it's perfectly normal.
It's up to you if you want to correct her or not.
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#4 of 14 Old 01-08-2007, 05:42 AM
 
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BeanBean is a big fan of the backwards writing. He's only frustrated by it when I can't read what he's written, and he knows that he's doing it backwards a lot of the time, but he seems to do it before he thinks about it, if you know what I mean. I've watched him self-correct and ask to be reminded, so I know that he's capable of writing correctly.

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#5 of 14 Old 01-08-2007, 12:23 PM
 
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my ds did this until kindergarten. He is ambidextrous and gifted, so maybe it's all somehow related?
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#6 of 14 Old 01-08-2007, 02:22 PM
 
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My son did this until almost 5. He still occasionally will write a string of numbers in perfect mirror image just for fun. I read that it's completely normal until after age 5 and not necessarily a sign of dyslexia or any other learning disorder.
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#7 of 14 Old 01-08-2007, 03:37 PM
 
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My ds still does this at 5.5 -- it ranges from writing single letters and numbers backwards to writing in mirror image. We just had him assessed and dyslexia was not identified.

Dyslexia is fairly complex and it's more than just writing letters backwards. I've found the following link helpful:

www.neurolearning.com

Laura - Mom to ds (10) and dd (7) "Time stands still best in moments that look suspiciously like ordinary life." Brian Andreas.

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#8 of 14 Old 01-08-2007, 03:45 PM - Thread Starter
 
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Thanks for all your responses. I get the feeling that it is fine, and not dyslexia. It's funny because she will often write her name upside down, then turn the paper 180 degrees and read it or show it to us. I think she is just "practicing," or whatever. Sometimes it is backwards, sometimes upside down, sometimes both.

And she is still experimenting with handedness. I am left-handed while DH is right-handed, so DD has seen both modeled. I haven't noticed whether she writes backwards when using a specific hand or not...that would be interesting.

We do sometimes tell her it's upside down, and sometimes she seems to understand and sometimes not. I don't think I'll start worrying until she's 5 or so.

Thanks again!
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#9 of 14 Old 01-08-2007, 04:33 PM
 
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My 2.5 year old does this too- I always thought it was the fact that he can recognize letters for what they are upside down and backwards (like, if he is doing an alphabet puzzle, the letters are in random positions and he can still recognize them) so I thought it just had to do with that he wasn't experienced enough with them to understand they have a concrete directionality. My guess is that the more developed they become, the more they will understand that letters go a certain way in written language.

Also, personally, I don't see anything wrong with explaining that it is fun to turn letters and words around, write backwards, etc., but that letters and words have standard, written meaning when written right-side-up and left to right. It is totally cool to allow creativity and exploration with language and alphabet, but I don't think telling them that to read and write in a way that is readily understood requires adherence to the rules of sandard writing diminshes that. Written language has concrete rules for understanding. Knowing those rules and then creatively exploring with violating them both have merit. As usual, its how you convey that lesson that sends the message that there is lots of room for creation and exploration while still understanding that things must be written in a certain way to make your words understood. Just my $0.02!
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#10 of 14 Old 01-14-2007, 05:51 PM
 
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DD isn't writing whole words yet, but she often spells things on the fridge using her magnetic letters...and she'll very often place the letters upside down or backwards. She doesn't have any trouble reading it back to us "correctly", and she seems to have no difficulty reading words/letters that ARE placed correctly, so like pps I figure it's just a phase.

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#11 of 14 Old 01-16-2007, 12:49 AM
 
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I have a feeling it's normal at this age. My ds is 26 months, and about half the time writes his letters backwards/upsidedown, and also usually a bit randomly placed on the page, instead of left-to-right sequence. (We haven't given him any lined paper or anything yet, so his drawing and writing is quite freehand!) He definitely knows the right way the letters go, since when he spells with magnet letters they are always the right way. I think they're just still developing the coordination for writing.
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#12 of 14 Old 01-22-2007, 11:46 PM
 
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My dd did the mirror image writing thing for a while too. She brought home a project when she was 3 and her name was written in mirror image on the back. I asked her why she wrote it that way, and she said that she wrote the E backwards, and decided to just go with it

She is 5 now and it has corrected itself for the most part. We still see a 3 backwards now and then, but that is the only one that she still mixes up.
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#13 of 14 Old 01-23-2007, 08:49 AM
 
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I wrote mirror-imaged for years; I'm left-handed/ambidextrous. (The ambidexterity is learned, thanks to a teacher who didn't believe in left-handedness)

As far as I know, there was slight concern about me being dyslexic, but all the "experts" reassured my parents that it was normal because I was left-handed.
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#14 of 14 Old 06-21-2014, 10:25 AM
 
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About age 7, I saw a Cary Grant movie where says "You cannot write your name upside down & backwards.". I tsught myself first my full name, then the alphabet (z, y, x, etc.) and then anything else I could spell. At age 67, I still do it. It makes people laugh or say "WHAT!?!?". Anyone else doing it?
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