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What Is Dysgraphia?

What Is Dysgraphia?

 

Dysgraphia refers to a neurological or brain-based learning disorder affecting writing. Dysgraphia, like all learning disorders, is common in people with ADHD. Dysgraphia is a written expression disorder that hinders one’s writing ability and fine motor skills. It is a learning disability that affects both children and adults, interfering with nearly every aspect of the writing process. This includes spelling, legibility, word spacing and sizing, and expression.

 

Estimates suggest that five to 20 percent of all children have some form of writing disability, such as dysgraphia. In children with attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD) or attention deficit disorder (ADD), dysgraphia and other learning disorders such as dyslexia and dyscalculia are common (ADHD or ADD). A learning disorder affects up to half of all children with ADHD in the United States.

 

WHAT IS DYSGRAPHIA?

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What Are Dysgraphia Symptoms?

 

Dysgraphia can be detected early on when a young child struggles to learn to write. However, a disorder of written expression may be overlooked during the early school years as a child’s writing ability develops. Dysgraphia can go undetected until adolescence or even adulthood.

 

Dysgraphia symptoms include:

  • Handwriting that is not legible
  • Writes slowly or laboriously
  • Using print and cursive letters together
  • Letters and words are spaced irregularly
  • Incorrect spelling and grammar
  • Having trouble gripping a pencil
  • Using punctuation marks incorrectly
  • Incomplete or run-on sentences and lack of paragraph breaks
  • Difficulty organizing thoughts when writing

 

Dysgraphia symptoms typically change over time. Individuals with dysgraphia typically struggle with writing mechanics and have other fine-motor impairments. Dysgraphia in adolescents and adults, on the other hand, is associated with problems with grammar, syntax, comprehension, and generally putting thoughts on paper.

 

What Causes Dysgraphia?

The cause of dysgraphia is unknown, but adults with dysgraphia are more likely to develop the condition following some trauma or injuries that damages the brain’s parietal lobe. The treatment of dysgraphia differ and may involve treating motor disorders to improve one’s writing movements. Other treatments may address issues such as impaired memory or other neurological issues. Some doctors recommend that people with dysgraphia use computers to avoid handwriting problems.

 

 

What Is Acquired Dysgraphia?

 

It is related to brain injury, disease, or degenerative conditions that cause the individual (typically as an adult) to lose previously acquired skills in writing.

 

 

What Is Developmental Dysgraphia?

 

Refers to difficulties in acquiring writing skills. This type of dysgraphia is most ordinarily considered in childhood. The causes of developmental dysgraphia are unknown, but researchers have identified several subtypes4 that correspond to certain neurological mechanisms:

 

 

What Is Motor Dysgraphia?

 

Dygraphia has long been associated with a lack of fine-motor coordination, which explains difficulties with writing. Individuals with motor dysgraphia commonly have illegible and slow handwriting, poor drawing and tracing skills, and slow finger-tapping (a common measure of fine motor skills).

 

 

What Is Spatial Dysgraphia?

 

It is linked to issues with spatial perception, which affects letter spacing and drawing ability. Handwriting and drawing are difficult for students and children with spatial dysgraphia, but spelling and finger-tapping speed are usually normal.

 

 

What Is Linguistic Dysgraphia?

 

Affects the language processing skills required for writing, particularly on spontaneously written text (text that has not been traced or copied) that frequently comes out as illegible. Linguistic dysgraphia does not affect drawing, copying, or oral spelling.

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How is Dysgraphia Diagnosed?

 

Specialists can use a variety of tools to determine a diagnosis, including:

 

  • School reports
  • Psychoeducational measures
  • Review of the individual’s developmental, medical, and familial history
  • Standardized writing assessments
  • General tests for dysgraphia typically include a writing component
  • Answering brief essay questions or copying out sentences
  • As well as a fine-motor component that tests the individual’s reflexes and motor speed.

 

The diagnosing specialist will give the child academic and writing tests to gauge their ability to put thoughts into writing and evaluate their fine motor skills. Some factors they will be looking at is how the words and letters are formed and whether the child struggles with the physical act of writing itself.

 

What Are the Strategies Used in Dysgraphia Tutoring and Coaching?

  • Think outside the pencil box. Learning to write is difficult for students who have dysgraphia. Dysgraphia tutors and coaches must be both flexible and creative with their teaching methods. A dysgraphia tutor can experiment with using different types of paper and writing utensils (graph paper is especially useful) and encourage extra practice at home. Handwriting can improve dramatically with practice and effort, according to studies, though it may be difficult for students with dysgraphia.

 

  • Make writing count. In most cases, students suffering from dysgraphia already know the answer or information they need to write down. However, they have trouble putting it into words. As such, their teachers or dysgraphia tutors must consider whether a written assignment is really the best way to assess their knowledge. When possible, students must be allowed to complete tasks orally. Dysgraphia tutors and coaches should provide typed copies of notes in advance or allow them to use a recording device during learning sessions.

 

  • Give extra time. As with most students with learning disorders, allowing them to learn at their own speed and giving them extra time to process and understand the lesson is important. Whether it’s letting them begin early of finish late, it’s crucial that students are able to learn at a pace that is comfortable for them.

 

  • Be flexible with grammar and spelling.

 

  • Teach good composition skills. Dysgraphia tutors and coaches should teach students to learn how to properly plan and accomplish a writing assignment. These skills can be challenging to students with dysgraphia, so you need to make sure those steps are obvious for them before students begin.

What Are the Dysgraphia Coaching and Tutoring Services That Themba Tutors Offers?

  • We specialize in coaching and tutoring students with dysgraphia
  • Private 1-on-1 tutoring and coaching
  • One-on-one in-home tutors and coaches for students with dysgraphia and other learning disabilities
  • Online tutoring and coaching for children and students
  • Our learning specialists can tutor and coach children and students of all ages, elementary school, middle school, high school, college students, and adults!

Subjects We Provide Personalized One-On-One Remote and In-home Tutors for:

What Is Dysgraphia Treatment?

 

Dysgraphia and other learning disorders are lifelong conditions that have no cure. Treatment for dysgraphia focuses on interventions, accommodations, and special services to circumvent writing-related tasks and/or improve writing abilities. Given the nature of dysgraphia, attempts at remediation and “more practice” alone are not enough – accommodations and other modifications are necessary to manage the condition successfully.

 

We recommend adapted typing techniques and software and Apps to support students with their written work in math, science, and other subjects. Students can print out their work and turn it in.

A few examples include:

 

 

How Can Themba Help You?

 

At Themba Tutors, we will help elementary, middle, and high school students identify, assess, and manage their difficulties. We will provide them with tools and help them learn the necessary skills to overcome all the challenges that hinder effective learning. Our dysgraphia tutoring and coaching can be customized for all grades and skill levels.

 

Looking for writing tutoring services? Contact us!

HELPFUL VIDEOS

 

What Is Dysgraphia

This video will learn about Dysgraphia tests, symptoms, treatment, types, and examples.

 

Dysgraphia (Medical Condition)

In this video, you will learn about Dysgraphia and ADHD, special dysgraphia, treatment, test, symptoms, and examples.

FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS

What are some symptoms of Dysgraphia?
  • Incorrect capitalization & spelling
  • Mix of print letters & cursive
  • Inappropriate spacing of letters & sizing
  • Having a hard time copying words
  • Labored or slow writing
  • Trouble visualizing words before writing them
  • Unusual position of body or hand when writing
  • Holding a pen or pencil very tight resulting in hand cramps
  • Watching your hand whenever you are writing
  • Students saying words aloud while writing
  • Omitting words and letters from sentences
What is Dysgraphia?

Dysgraphia is a learning disability that affects writing abilities and can include difficulties with spelling, poor handwriting, and trouble putting thoughts on paper. Because writing requires a complex set of motor, cognitive, and language processing skills, it’s a complex learning disability.

Is dysgraphia a form of dyslexia?
  • Dyslexia and dysgraphia are both learning differences but are very different. Dyslexia is a reading disorder. Dysgraphia is a writing disorder.
Can dysgraphia be cured?

Dysgraphia cannot be cured, and even medication will not help. But challenges with writing and fine motor skills can be improved with proper training, tutoring, and coaching.

dysgraphia tutors coaches learning specialists, Themba Tutors

At Themba Tutors, we will let you know what kind of help you need once we set up a free intake. Knowing the student’s strengths and weaknesses is vital for helping the student with the challenges they’re facing. We offer services that include academic coaching and tutoring based on the student’s needs. We also offer a hybrid model for those students who need help with content and improving their underlying study skills. 

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