Mornings: Post a daily routine chart. If it needs to vary from day to day, use a wipe off board or use pictures attached to a backing with Velcro. Make your child aware of the schedule the night before. Have a place to study with child size furniture. The table or desk should be two inches above a child’s bent elbow when sitting in the chair. The chair should allow his feet to be flat on the floor. This place needs a place for his folders, backpack, etc. Ask your child what helps him stay focused. Some children need to doodle when being read to. Others need to chew gum or listen to music as they work. But there is a fine balance between focusing […]
Every parent and therapist has high expectations for the summer months. Considered “free months”, we tend to forget about vacations, camps, Vacation Bible School, etc. that fill up those “free months” very quickly. As your summer is unfolding and you are dealing with priorities of yours, your children, and the therapist, its important to talk with your therapist/tutor to determine what the goals are for the summer months and how these goals will be achieved. Make sure the goals are realistic for your family and your child. Have FUN activities that will encourage those goals when you go on your trips. It might be writing daily in a journal to help with handwriting. Reading maps or signs along the way to help improve reading skills. […]
Book: Cavey, D.W. (2000) Dysgraphia: Why Johnny Cant Write: A Handbook for Teachers and Parents Articles: Dysgraphia: www.resourceroom.net/readspell/dysgraphia.asp Kay, Margaret J. EdD: Dysgraphia. www.margaretkay.com Disorders of Written Expression. www.nldontario.org Deul, Ruthmary K., MD. Developmental Dysgraphia and Motor Skills Disorders, Journal of Child Neurology, vol 10. Supp.1 January 1995. What is Dysgraphia Spelling? www.ehow.com Richards, Regina G., “When Writing’s a Problem”. Resource Directory, Southern California Consortium, Orton Dyslexia Society 1996. My article reprinted in this blog: HIBIDA Resource Directory 2011 available from The Neuhaus Education Center, Houston, Texas
Computer: A computer helps eliminate the questions of “How do I make the letters?”, “Where are the letters placed on the line,” and “Where is the sentence placed on the page.” computer use is not to replace handwriting as worksheets still demand legible handwriting but does offer recourse for longer assignments. In severe cases of dysgraphia, software allowing a student to dictate into the computer is available. Consider an Alpha Smart instead of a LapTop: www.alphasmart.com Shorten writing assignments Encourage editing and proofreading. Encourage a good pencil grip. Use an inclined clipboard and a gripper if needed for hand fatigue or discomfort.
Copying from near point (from a book or paper on the desk): If writing is tedious, decrease the amount of board and desk copying when possible. If copying is a requirement and there are no modifications try the following: Ask to shorten the copying assignment by having the student only copy half of it. Try folding the page to be copied in half so there is less visual distractions. The task may look less formidable if broken in half. Some students prefer to work vertically rather than left to right. Try placing the page to be copied at the top of the writing page rather than to the side to see if there is greater ease of copying. Make the task more fun by copying […]
Dyspgraphia seems to be the new buzz word of late in my circle of clients. I will be posting exerts from an article I wrote for the 2011 Houston Branch of the International Dyslexia Assoc. Resource Directory (specialist in Dyslexia) which I hope will “de mystify” that threatening word! “Dysgraphia? Help!” Those two words are often said to professionals by parents after receiving their children’s handwriting evaluations. But Dysgraphia doesn’t have to be as overwhelming as it can seem at first. Let’s start by looking at the word dysgraphia. “Dys” simply means “difficulty with”. “Graphia” refers to the writing process. “This difficulty with the physical task of writing is out of harmony with a child’s intelligence, regular teaching instruction and the use of the pencil in non-learning tasks.” (Regina […]
Do I understand my child’s strengths and weaknesses? These should have been discussed in the testing results as well as by any professional or teacher working with your child. It’s important to really understand your child’s strengths as you and the therapist will use the strengths to help pull up the weaknesses. For example, if your child remembers instructions better by looking at words or pictures rather than by listening to instructions, you will want to make lists for him to see (pictures) or read (words) rather than telling him what to do, especially if it involves several steps. The therapist may also use lists or demonstrations rather than just “telling” your child what to do. If you are unsure of your child’s strengths, ask […]