My brain goes 100 different places and then I end up buying way more than necessary or standing in the store longer while I read pencil reviews on Amazon (you’ve don’t that, right?) Well I’m here to tell you I can’t help. Nope. Not one bit…on pencils anyhow (although I do prefer Ticonderoga or Dixon- they sharpen much cleaner), but I can help you choose the right scissors for your preschooler!
As soon as they show interest! As long as you provide your kids with the right tools, they can start using scissors even before the preschool years. My boys are 2 and 3 years old and have a good amount of experience with scissors, however, they aren’t completely proficient scissor-wielders yet. I’m not pushing them to master the skill (that will come in their own time), but I do want to make sure they have the right tools to accomplish the task. That lead me on a quest to find the best scissors for for little hands. I made sure to test each of the featured pairs of scissors with my boys and myself to make sure to provide you all with the information you need to make the right choice for your kids.
The Contenders (from left to right and color coded)
The Kid Test
I set all of the scissors in a tray and invited my boys to test them out. I offered several materials to test the scissors with, including regular paper, craft foam, card stock, and tissue paper.
They happily tested each pair of scissors and had some clear favorites (and non-favorites)…
Before I report the results, I think it’s important to disclose some details about my boys- they are 2 and 3 years old and have been using the Up & Up blunt tip scissors in most of our cutting trays. Cannon (my oldest) has nearly mastered the proper scissor hold (thumb on top), while my youngest (Hunter), is still just experimenting with the scissors and how to use them.
Both boys had a clear preference for the blunt tip scissors (they didn’t show preference between the Target or Fiskars Brand). Their least favorite were the Faber-Castell First Scissors. They really struggled trying to hold them since their grips are so small and those scissors require the entire hand to be wrapped around the shears to cut with them.
However, our results may be skewed since they have been using the blunt tip scissors from the start of their cutting careers, so to be a bit more helpful I tested each pair of scissors myself in an attempt at a less-biased perspective.
The Mom Test
Since my kids aren’t able to elaborate on what they liked and disliked about each pair of scissors, I tested each pair myself cutting through various materials. The pros and cons will hopefully help you choose the pair that is right for your toddler or preschooler.
Going from the scissors from left to right in the picture, here are my results:
Pros: These scissors can be used for lefties or righties, so if you aren’t sure which hand is dominant in your children, this is a great feature. The scissors spring back open to help learn proper cutting motion.
Cons: The large finger loops left my kids confused about how to use these. The scissors are spring loaded, which is a pro for teaching a continual cutting motion, but they were also very limiting and awkward because the scissors could not be opened up all the way. Due to this, the cuts were also very shallow. They worked well for fringe cutting, but felt unnatural to make longer cuts with.
Conclusion: Neither my boys nor I cared for this style of scissors. However, they might be the right choice for toddlers/preschoolers who haven’t been exposed to “big kid” scissors yet or who haven’t identified their hand dominance. The scissors cut through each material easily.
Up & Up Pre-School Training Scissors
Pros: These scissors also have the option to be spring loaded (the little white piece of plastic between the handles can be placed up or folded down when spring action is not desired). The scissors mimicked the use of big kid scissors in that the blades were able to be fully opened to facilitate continual cutting motion. True safety blades means these won’t likely cut skin.
Cons: The blades are true safety blades- slightly blunted to prevent cutting skin but also making it more difficult to cut through materials like tissue paper and craft foam.
Conclusion: These scissors would make a great first pair of scissors for toddlers and preschoolers. Just be mindful they will be limited in the materials they are able to cut.
Up & Up (Target brand) 5 inch blunt tip scissors
Pros: These scissors have very little limitations. They easily cut through each material and provide little to no frustration in learning to open and close the blade.
Cons: These are not safety scissors. While they are not super-sharp like fabric scissors, they do present a possibility of cutting skin. It has never happened with my boys, but it is possible. New cutters may find it frustrating to learn how to reopen and close the blade since there is no spring action.
Conclusion: These are the scissors my boys learned to cut with. While they may be frustrating for a bit, they are not difficult to use with practice. These may not be the right choice if you are in a daycare or preschool setting where you are not able to be seated one-on-one with each child (early frustration without constant support may put students off from using them).
The review for these scissors is the exact same as the Target Up & Up brand. I tried to find a reportable difference and the only thing I came up with was the blade of the Target scissors were slightly easier to open and close, and I mean slightly. You would not notice a difference unless you were specifically trying to find one.
Faber-Castell My First Scissors
These looked really cool. They definitely had the “wow” factor with the kids and they cut through paper easily. Works for students who have not shown hand dominance yet.
My boys had a tough time trying to actually use these scissors. Their hands were not big enough to grasp around the blades. When I used them, they did not cut through craft foam or tissue paper very well.
These aren’t the best choice for preschoolers. However, my 10 year old niece loved them and she’s taking them home to use now 🙂
Final Thoughts on the Best Preschool Scissors
We’ll continue using the blunt tip scissors for my boys. While they were slightly frustrating at first, they prefer them over the others and they cut very well (perfect for all the different materials in our cutting trays!) Which scissors will you be choosing for your kids? Do you have a favorite type of scissor that I missed? Let me know in the comments below so I can test them out!
Note for left-handers: Neither myself nor my kids are lefties, so I can’t give an accurate review of how these scissors work for lefties. Here are some posts from moms of left-handed kids. I hope they will help you in finding the right scissors for your kids!
Left-Handed School Supplies
More Scissor Recommendations (with left-hander child preferences)
Also, you might want to read these Six Examples of How Your Preschooler Might be Using Scissors the WRONG WAY
and check out this Cutting Busy Box to get your preschooler started cutting!
Ready to get started teaching scissor skills to your kids? Look no further than right here!
If you’re looking for worksheets, this isn’t for you. But if you’re looking for a mix of fun, practical, and developmentally appropriate scissor skill activities then click here to learn more!
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