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National Left-handers Day celebration

Next : August 19, 2012, Brive-la-Gaillarde, France.

Thank you to all of you who were at Brive-la-Gaillarde on August 13, 2011 to celebrate the release of my book and teaching materials with me!

August 13 was first designated as Left-handers Day in England in 1992. In France, it is often celebrated on the second Saturday in August. The first French Left-handers Day celebration (Fête Nationale des Gauchers) was held in 2005 in Saint Denis de la Réunion. In 2011, left-handers from all over France gathered together on August 13 at Brive-la-Gaillarde for:

• Various educational workshops

• Performances, games, and gift give-aways

• Vente d’outils pour gauchers...

An event not to be missed!

The Fête Nationale de Gauchers is an occasion for left-handers of all ages to come together. Educators, occupational therapists, and other professionals are also in attendance at stands that offer a wide range of games, tests and other activities, each more fascinating than the last.

This year, for the first time, I had my own “Laterapedagogy” stand, and it was packed with visitors all day long! The hours were punctuated with conversations, shared of experiences, personal stories, and talking about experiments with left-handers and disappointed parents of left handers. For some people, it was a real surprise to discover that even though they might be right-handed for hand use and far-sighted vision, they are in fact left-handed for near-sighted vision. That helps them finally understand why reading can be so hard and slow, with this symptomatic feeling of having to push the letters along and needing to re-read sentences three or four times to understand them!

Many people were intrigued* by my concept of the eyes as “locomotive”, making reading easier, more flexible, and most importantly, improving comprehension. This was especially convincing for those who are left-handed for vision.

Left-handers who write with their wrist curled like a swan’s neck as if broken expressed as much curiosity in taking the risk to draw loops from right-to-left in their dominant opening direction. This frees them from having to twist their wrist and getting cramps from writing. When they get to then end of a line on the left side of the page, all they need to do is start looping in the other direction from left-to-right in the conventional writing direction without changing their hand position. This reversing of directions is termed “boustrophedon writing” (see (b) below).

This also does wonders for relieving back strain!

I also have to add that the double-sided whiteboard, especially since it was used with fluorescent markers, was a huge success. In sum, it was a real pleasure to help all of these proud and self-aware left-handers to discover their dominant opening direction for reading and writing, not counting those who didn’t even know they were actually lefties!

Stay tuned for news of the 2012 Fête Nationale de Gauchers!

* For more details, visit these pages on this site: “Approach” and “Therapeutic and educational resources”.

PDF / 3.6 Mb / Article (in French): "Soigner sa gauche contre tous les diables" L’écho de la Corrèze

Fête nationale des gauchers

"The smartest approach to this issue is yours".

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