Saturday, February 6, 2010

Assistive technology for southpaws

I'm not a fan of SMART Boards™ for a few reasons, not the least of which is my left-handedness.

Left-handers push words when we write. It's not a natural motion, and the SMART Board™ takes southpaws back to the fountain pen days, when our hand would smudge the not-quite-dry ink.

When I write on a SMART Board™, my hand blocks the light. As I continue, my wrist, then my forearm block the light.

Many left-handers can write backwards, though most may be unaware of this. If you're lefty, try it for a few minutes. You may amaze yourself more than you already do.

Some of us can write backwards faster than forwards. I occasionally took notes in medical school backwards, then reverse the paper and hold it up to a light to read it.

So here's my idea for a new assistive technology--program the SMART Board to flip my witing into its mirror image as I write!

Take that, Sister Mary Barbara!

Other reasons I don't like SMART Boards™:

That lag (try drawing lots of dots in a diffusion lesson
Hogs up my whiteboard space
The culture (All caps? Really? How precious....)

I secretly take it down for some periods...lots of glorious whiteboard underneath!

Drawing by DaVinci--I tweeted him, but he never wrote back....


The Science Goddess said...

I'm a southpaw, too. Never have tried writing backwards, but I will definitely give it a try.

One of the guys who delivered my washer/dryer in November was telling me that a couple of years ago, his sister's Kindergarten teacher was tying his sister's left hand behind her back so she would be forced to write right-handed. I thought that sort of thing went out in the '50s.

doyle said...

Dear Science Goddess,

Let me know how it goes!

(That kindergarten teacher needs to be reprimanded--this is craziness....)

John Spencer said...

My twin brother is a south paw. I would play short stop and he'd be at first base.

I remember that he would not only get ink all over his hand, but also get a red spot from the spiral notebook. He used to say that he'd someday move to a place like Israel where they embrace the left-handed writers.