28 answers

5 Yr. Old Daughter Is Making Some Letters Backwards

I am working on printing letters with my 5 yr. old daughter and have noticed that she is repeatedly making her c's, lower case e's and upper case G's backwards. I have been working with her on and off for about 6 mos. and when she traces the letters or I guide her hand, she does it correctly, but when she tries it on her own, she immediately makes them backwards. Does anyone have any suggestions for how I can encourage her? Thanks for the help!

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So What Happened?™

Thanks so much everyone for your advice and thoughts. I plan to keep working with her over the summer, but not pushing her to the point where she gets frustrated with it and doesn't want to do it. I appreciate the reassurances!

More Answers

It is totally normal, developmentally, for some kids to get letters/numbers backwards. My son who is six does it with numbers all the time. My mom, who was a teacher for forty years said it is totally normal, it will correct itself without any "help" and it is better to just overlook it because the last thing you want to do is erode her confidence or discourage writing. At school, he is in first grade, his teachers do not correct him. They just read the numbers as they were clearly intended and check his work that way. My understanding is that it is not a skill issue, it is a perception issue, kids just don't see things the way we do until they get a little older.

1 mom found this helpful

Good Morning,
My son is in Kindergarten and he also makes his c's and G's backwards. His kindergarten teacher said this is typical of this age. I noticed he is left handed most of the time. However, when he uses his right hand he writes these letters correctly. When my daughter was this age she also did this but wrote complete words backwards.(It was a mirror image).He will be going to Camp Read-A-Lot this summer (summer school) through the school system. He is 7 now. He went to a young 5's program last year.
Hope this helps.
Chris K

1 mom found this helpful

Let it go!!!

I have two children one a 12 year old boy who was an strong reader and who is now in AP classes. I was paniced when we had reversals in K and 1st and even into 2nd. It was the K teacher who told me not to worry. My now 9 year old had reversals in K - 1 - 2 and she is now getting out of it with her I was much more laid back. I got concerned when she didn't have the confidence to write and she would ask me "mommy which way does the letter go". Her worrying was holding her back from actually getting the work done. I think the most important thing is that they read and write even if they make mistakes. They totally grow out of it and too much focus will make them very nervous and uncomfortable with writing.

1 mom found this helpful

As a kindergarten teacher, it is perfectly normal for five year olds to make this mistake. Keep practicing with her but do not push her or the subject if she becomes frustrated. Take a break from it and come back to it later. It will correct itself over time. Be patient with it and your daughter. It is normal for children to do this at this age. Some children even write their letters backwards so if you hold a mirror up to the word they wrote, you can read what they just wrote perfectly in the mirror. I hope this helped you. Remember it will pass. :)

1 mom found this helpful

I am a preschool teacher and I have also had the Gazelle Training. As you know the Gazelle assessment is used for kindergarten testing. But it also breaks things down into development milestones and what happens at each age. It is very developmentally appropriate for your daughter to write her letters backwards. She may at some point write her entire name backwards. This is ok. She is at the developmental age where her brain cannot always correctly tell her hand what to do. she will look at those letters and know they aren't right, but when she puts pencil to paper they will come out backwards. Her hand and brain will catch up to each other. The important thing to do now is to point it out to her, but gently and just move on. Don't have her practice those particular letters continuously. That only causes undue frustration and isn't fun for her. Just be patient, it will undue itself.

1 mom found this helpful

Hi S.,
I am a certified teacher and currently work as a Reading Specialist. Reversing letters/ numbers is developmental and very common. It is fine to demonstrait the correct direction when writing letters, but don't worry about it too much. As time goes by this should correct itself. Your daughter will grow out of it. It's really not a big deal.
Hope this helps!

If you notice that the letters you noted are started on the right side and go left. Most letters start on the left and go right. It is harder for the young brain to get used to the spacing so they just do it backwards for awhile. She will get it right.
Good luck and God Bless!

This is totally normal. I took a parenting class when my son was 4 and they told us in that class to start watching for that because it is very common. My son did it too. It doesn't last long and the kids learn to correct it themselves.

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