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If the bending is so extreme that the centre of gravity of the body falls forward of the pelvis, the body must be held in position by muscular action instead of resting with- out effort upon the pelvic. The muscular and nervous energy so used is wasted entirely.
If the paper upon which the child is working is placed either to the right or left of the middle line of the body, the trunk is apt to be twisted to correspond. Such twisting in one direction, if habitual, causes curvature best research paper writing services of the spine. The paper should be placed directly in front of the pupil, and he must be required to face the desk squarely. If the desk-top is flat and the head held erect, the eyes must turn downwards through a large angle to see the writing. This causes a considerable strain upon them, and the child meets the difficulty by bending forward so that he looks at the paper perpendicularly rather than obliquely. In avoiding one difficulty he meets another, for the bending of the head, if excessive, interferes with the proper circulation of the blood in the head. The difficulty is solved by desks with inclined tops tilted forward at an angle of fifteen to eighteen degrees. These permit a sufficiently erect position of the head without causing eye-strain.
It remains true, of course, that the child who can maintain the ideal posture for any length of time has not yet been born, nor ever will be. The danger lies in too great an habitual divergence from that ideal in one direction. If, for instance, the child places his paper to the left of the middle line of his body as frequently as he does to the right, the two deviations will balance each other and no great harm will result. But if he habitually best research paper writing services places the paper to the right, an habitual twisting of the head and trunk in that direction will inevitably result disastrously. As a matter of fact, the teacher must avoid demanding any one unvarying posture just as much as she must combat habitual bad posture. The younger the child, the less he should be required to hold any one position for any length of 58 time, and to permit changes of position, providing they are not habitual in one direction, is absolutely necessary in order to avoid restlessness and fatigue. The most usual fault consists in holding the eyes too close to the paper. Constant focussing upon any near object causes con- siderable nervous and muscular strain in the eyes, and the closer the object the greater the strain. An effort must be made to keep the eyes as far from the paper as conditions will permit. These standards imply that the writer is in an erect position. It should be large enough to be easily seen at the standard distance.
In the primary grades this requirement will be met without spe- cial effort because of the naturally large writing of young children, in the older grades it becomes of greater importance. In this connection the quality of the mark made by pen or pencil is of importance.
A hard pencil makes so light a mark that the difficulty of seeing it necessitates too close a position of the eyes. Only soft pencils making a heavy black line should be used. If the writing is done with pen and ink, a good dark ink is essential for the same reason. Glazed paper which reflects the light is hard upon the eyes.
Diffused day- light is the most restful light for work requiring the constant use of the eyes in near vision. This requirement is now gener- ally recognized by school architects when planning their light- ing arrangements.
The practised writer does not find writing especially fatiguing, but for the beginner, even when working under the best conditions, writing does cause fatigue very quickly. The writing act is so complex, the precision of movement, slight as it seems to the adult, is so great when compared with the ability of the child, the strain of attention is so exhausting that every precaution should be taken to prevent the writing lesson from becoming a source of too great fatigue. For young children the writing lesson should come early in the day before the child is already fatigued with other lessons. The primary grades should not be best research paper writing services required to write at high speed or to make very precise movements. Blackboard practice is preferable for them mainly because it permits less precise movements and larger sized writing than are possible with pen or pencil. The practice periods should be short and frequent rather than long and at great intervals. The points made in this outline of the hygiene of writing are so self-evident that no further elaboration is necessary. For the most part they are just a matter of common sense, and practically all teachers of to-day make a point of seeing that all the conditions which have been mentioned as favouring health and efficiency are the rule and not the exception in best research paper writing services their classes. The distribution of pressure in writing has been investi- gated by a number of experimenters. This doubtless is due to the fact that children tend to write by letter units rather than by word units. In children of six and seven years of age, not only each single letter, but even each single stroke is written with equal pressure.
Consequently, the child writes more slowly than the adult and produces each stroke at approximately the same rate of speed. The masculine type exhibits greater pressure than the fem- inine, but less speed. The pressure is rhythmically distributed over the word so that the maximum pressure lies at a definite point in each word. By some individuals this point of maxi- mum pressure is placed at the beginning, by others at the end of the word.