Friday, February 6, 2009

Favorite Thing Friday: First Scissors

According to experts in the artistic development of young children I am very behind on teaching Kal-El to use scissors.  I didn't set out to permanently stunt his scissors development, it was a matter of improper equipment.  I had meant to order these scissors for months, but the company I ordered from only takes orders by phone or mail which somehow really slowed me down (Michael Olaf, take note).   

These scissors have a spring action that opens the scissors automatically after the child cuts.  They have a two-finger grip for either right or left hand so the child only has to squeeze to cut.  They are made by Fiskars and are sold by Amazon for $7.99.  Michael Olaf sells them for $3.50.

Kal-El was delightfully excited, serious, and proud.  

He said, "Those are my own scissors?  Just for Kal-El?"  As he went about his work he kept saying "Mommy, I am cutting a piece with my own scissors for you."  He cut chunks out of a piece of pink construction paper for at least an hour, during which time he asked about twenty times when Daddy would be home from work to see him cut with scissors.  As soon as Daddy was home he shouted "come in the kitchen and see what I'm doing right now."  He did a lot of role playing with his scraps of paper.  He cut out a lot of "mountains" and a lot of little "daddy" pieces of paper to "climb the mountain."

A typical Montessori scissors activity is to make strips of paper with lines drawn on them and have the child cut the strip into pieces by cutting on the line.  However, true children's art experts recommend letting them have as much free-cutting experiences as possible.  They will start by just making cuts, later move on to cutting chunks out of the paper, and then eventually shapes.

I bought an extra pair for Me Too because we call him "Me Too" for a reason.  He won't receive his anytime soon.  He would try to eat them and I think the metal blade would cut his tongue.

Kal-El cut several pieces of paper he identified as "gifts" for Grammie, Bumpa, Auntie, and Uncle so he will pass those on to you at some point.  He cut some for Me Too as well, but Me Too already ate his.


  1. Don't feel bad about being behind with scissors. I didn't start my son with them until he was at least 4...I just didn't think about it! And that's when we started doing some Montessori activities. He enjoyed cutting strips of paper, with no lines at first, because that's all he was given. Now, my daughter has strips of paper to cut, but on her own initiative she will cut large pieces of paper into small pieces...usually she'll draw a picture first and then cut it up and give the pieces to people. It doesn't seem very Montessori at all, yet she is getting better with scissors! I feel that maybe if I set it up as an activity, with a couple markers and large pieces of paper on a tray, I could have her draw and then cut...

  2. You will have to ask GiGi about my first "free cutting" experience with scissors :(


  3. Momster, I know ALL ABOUT THAT. It is family legend! Memories of GiGi's curtains are part of what makes me say UHG2BK about art supplies on demand. The scissors are up VERY high in a cupboard. Don't even get me started on the lecture I gave him about who is allowed to cut hair and with what.