Styluses for the Emerging Artists and Writers

Mobile devices provide great opportunity for direct access using fingers to draw, write or tap to interact on a touchscreen tablet any where.

With its popular use with children, mobile devices can be yet another tool to transition users to writing tools to work on pencil grasp and tool control. Although styluses have been previously reviewed new styluses continue to emerge with different styles and qualities and some might be better suited to young emergent writers or artists than others.

What do you look for in styluses for the emerging author or painter?

  • Durable tool
  • Large, chunky shafts or gripping surfaces
  • Accuracy when holding in at an angle (not requiring upright positioning to connect)
  • Weight of the stylus, light weight or heavier providing appropriate feedback for the need of the writer.

What are some choices?

HHI Chunky Pencil-Like Capacitive Stylus  (2.99) – These styluses are hefty.  Beneficial for those writers who need additional input when writing from the weight of the stylus . The shaft of the stylus is thick and chunky providing good surface for grasping. Experience at school has been positive and have shown to be durable, reasonably accurate and a low-cost solution. Lots of colors available with a range in price from 2.99 to 4.99 for a pack of two however the pack contains a chunkier stylus and a slimmer stylus. Works on capacitive and touch tablets.

No. 2 Stylus – Pencil – (14.99) “Looks like a pencil”  stylus that works on all touch screens. Two in a pack (Shipping weight is 8 oz total which may indicate a lighter stylus.) Positive responses from user reviews.

Red Black Pencil OEM Suck – (11.09) – Pencil like  stylus. Made of electro-conductive silicone or rubber. Weighs 6 oz. (same as the Cosmonaut indicating a heftier, weighted stylus). Reports indicate you have to press hard to get it to connect so accuracy and ease of use might be compromised.

App Crayon – (24.95) – Chunky, triangular stylus. For touch and capacitive screens. Comes in different colors with good ratings by PC magazine review for its responsiveness and feel with use. If its shipping weight (10.1 oz.)  is indicative of being a heftier stylus then it would appear to be a heavier stylus.

Made by Dano, who also created an AppCrayon app which works on practice of upper case and lower case letter formation.The AppCrayon app is a nice writing app, featuring  arrows directing each stroke, ability to fade tracing lines and letters spoken. It does not follow strictly use of Zaner Bloser, D’ Nealian or Handwriting without Tears style of letter formation but does provide nice step by step visual instruction (j, q).

Cosmonaut – (24.99) For all touch windows this was meant to feel like a marker. Weighs 6 ounces. Reportedly has some heft and a rubberized exterior for ease of gripping as reviewed by the Gadgeteer . Heft would appear to provide some resistance when writing good for some students needing additional proprioception when writing or drawing.  Recommended by some therapists.

iCreate – Digital Crayon Stylus  – (15.01) A round, crayon like stylus for touch tablets weighing 2 ounces, a lighter weight stylus.

With many choices of styluses for emergent writers, considering the needs of your writer can help with choice of a stylus.  Don’t forget a stand if that will help with visual and motor skills.

What type of stylus are you using or recommend?


About Carol Leynse Harpold, MS, OTR/L, SCLV, ATP, CATIS

OTR/L with more than 35 years experience in pediatrics, school based therapy and adult rehabilitation. Masters of Science in Adaptive Education/Assistive Technology with 20 years experience in AT in education of elementary, middle school, secondary, post secondary students and work environments for adult clients. A RESNA Assistive Technology Practitioner with ACVREP CATIS credentials, AOTA Specialty Certification in Low Vision, USC Davis Executive Certificate in Home Modifications, servicing adults and students with disabilities in employment, education, and home environments. A 2020 graduate of the University of Alabama Birmingham Low Vision Certification Program.
This entry was posted in Accessories, Early Childhood, Fine Motor Development, Handwriting, iPad, iPhone, iPod, iPod/iPad Accessory, Occupational Therapy, Stylus and tagged , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

3 Responses to Styluses for the Emerging Artists and Writers

  1. I bought the App Crayon and returned it. It is completely plastic and feels virtually weightless. I like a stylus with some weight.

  2. Pingback: Stylus Options for iPad and iPhone Users: Easy Grip | ATMac

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