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Dysgraphia
dysgraphia

Dysgraphia affects a person’s handwriting ability and fine motor skills. A person with this specific learning disability may have problems including illegible handwriting, inconsistent spacing, poor spatial planning on paper, poor spelling, and difficulty composing writing as well as thinking and writing at the same time.


Signs and Symptoms of Dysgraphia

  • May have illegible printing and cursive writing (despite appropriate time and attention given the task)
  • Shows inconsistencies: mixtures of print and cursive, upper and lower case, or irregular sizes, shapes or slant of letters
  • Has unfinished words or letters, omitted words
  • Inconsistent spacing between words and letters
  • Exhibits strange wrist, body or paper position
  • Has difficulty pre-visualizing letter formation
  • Copying or writing is slow or labored
  • Shows poor spatial planning on paper
  • Has cramped or unusual grip/may complain of sore hand
  • Has great difficulty thinking and writing at the same time (taking notes, creative writing.)

Strategies for Dysgraphia

  • Suggest use of word processor
  • Avoid chastising student for sloppy, careless work
  • Use oral exams
  • Allow use of tape recorder for lectures
  • Allow the use of a note taker
  • Provide notes or outlines to reduce the amount of writing required
  • Reduce copying aspects of work (pre-printed math problems)
  • Allow use of wide rule paper and graph paper
  • Suggest use of pencil grips and /or specially designed writing aids
  • Provide alternatives to written assignments (video-taped reports, audio-taped reports)

Excerpted from the LDA of California and UC Davis M.I.N.D. Institute “Q.U.I.L.T.S.” Calendar 2001-2002

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