Have you ever had parents come in panicked with the thought their child might be dyslexic? I have and this is often because they see their child confusing b and d. I often told parents this is a very natural part of a child's literacy development. Then my own child did it and I understood the panic! So how do we reassure parents that a b/d confusion is natural? We have found that the best way to do this is to simply avoid the confusion completely!
Last week we shared with you the funny finger play, "5 Little Monkeys." (See below) We encouraged you to have children follow your every movement and to turn so they saw your hands "make the bed." We want to be sure they are viewing your left hand showing the "headboard" and your right hand showing the "footboard." Why? It is THE BEST way we have found to avoid or correct b/d confusion!
The children can say the word bed while looking at their hands making the bed. The left hand makes the letter b and begins the word, bed. The right hand makes the letter d and ends the word bed.
As a teacher of young children, I have used this technique for years. Often third grade teachers will come to me and ask why some children stop and use their fingers before writing certain letters. I know immediately what is happening - they are checking themselves to be sure the b and d are facing the correct way! Use this tip to help children - but the key begins in preschool with a simple finger play!