Sensory Processing Disorder Parent Support
Sensory Processing Disorder Parent Support 

Dysgraphia, Writing & Sensory Processing Disorder  

Children with sensory differences ... painting the world beautiful.  

Dysgraphia, Writing & Sensory Processing Disorder  

Jeanette Loftus 

child with sensory processing disorder and dysgraphia writing Dysgraphia, Writing & Sensory Processing Disorder
Approximately 10% of children and adults may have dysgraphia. Some children will have difficulties with spelling, others will struggle more with writing and some could struggle with both. 

It is not uncommon for children who have sensory processing disorder to also struggle with dysgraphia too.
 Sensory processing disorder is when the brain has difficulty processing and responding to sensory input.

This can result in having difficulty with fine motor skills and can also contribute to the challenges faced by those with dysgraphia.
Dysgraphia is a learning disorder that affects how a child is able to write and spell. It is also known as being a writing disability. Dysgraphia can affect adults and children. Children can also have other learning disabilities too and diagnosis too when they struggle with Dysgraphia.

There are therapies and strategies that can help children with sensory processing disorder and dysgraphia. Occupational therapy and sensory integration therapy can help children develop the skills needed to manage their sensory input and improve their fine motor skills.

Dysgraphia is a disorder that affects a person's ability to write. It is a specific learning disability that is characterized by difficulty with handwriting, spelling, and organizing thoughts on paper. Dysgraphia is a problem with the motor skills that are involved in writing and the ability to put ideas down in a coherent and organized manner.

There are a lot of different ways to help children with dysgraphia improve their writing skills and overcome these challenges. They will require a diagnosis from a school psychologist or an occupational therapist.

It is very important for teachers and parents to create a supportive environment for children with dysgraphia. This can include providing extra time for writing assignments, breaking down tasks into smaller parts and allowing for alternative forms of assessment like oral presentations.

If you are concerned that your child may have Dysgraphia, talk to your child's school psychologist or an occupational therapist.

There are so many tools and ideas that you can try to help your child when they are struggling with Dysgraphia.

- Have you child try a few different pencil grips
- Purchase your child some wide ruled paper or paper with raised lines to practice writing
- Don't criticize your child's work and praise them when they try
- Offer positive reinforcement
- Talk to your child about Dyspraxia so they understand
- Practice fine motor activities
- Remain calm and patient (your child may be feeling anxious, frustrated, stupid etc.)
- Practice for 5-10 min at a time
- Make it fun! Use toys and tools
- Family game nights with puzzles or writing
- Ask your child to choose their own pens and pencils
- Try different pencils, pens and crayons that have different shapes and sizes 
child with dysgraphia and sensory processing disorder holding a writing book and pencil Dysgraphia, Writing & Sensory Processing Disorder
The symptoms of dysgraphia can be different for each child who is struggling with it but there are some common signs to look out for. Young children may have difficulty holding a pencil or crayon, poor handwriting, and difficulties with letter formation and spacing.
When a child gets older they may struggle with spelling, writing legibly, and organizing thoughts on paper.
In adults who have dysgraphia can manifest as difficulty with handwriting, spelling, struggles with note-taking, and difficulty expressing thoughts in writing. 
Adults with dysgraphia may also struggle with tasks that require fine motor skills, such as filling out forms or signing their name.
- writing too large or too small
- inappropriate spacing between letters
- speaking out what they are writing as they are writing
- feeling tired after writing a short amount
- watching their hands as they are writing and printing
- tight grip while they are writing
- holding pencil/pen in odd positions while writing
- they have difficulty writing notes in school
- difficulty thinking of words to write
- struggles to communicate through writing
- unfinished sentences
- pain or cramps in fingers or wrists while writing
- incorrect use of capitals
- not including words in sentences
- not using the correct words
- poor or unreadable handwriting
- incorrect spelling
- mixing printing letter with cursive letters together
- writing slowly or incomplete words
- misuse of lines and margins
- awkward body position
- Often erasing or avoids writing
- unusual paper position while writing
- inconsistent letter shapes
Fine Motor Activities
- finger painting
- puzzles
- building blocks and Lego
- playing and squishing sensory dough
- cutting paper with scissors
- making bead necklaces
- stacking and sorting colorful blocks
- wooden geo board and rubber bands
- stacking noodles on sticks in Styrofoam
- glue seeds on paper, making crafts
- stringing buttons on a string
- rolling tissue paper and glue it on a picture
- pushing pegs into a peg board
- cutting, pressing and making art with clay
- cutting, squishing, playing or creating with Kinetic sand
- looking for objects in sand or sensory bin
child with magnetic sensory toy for sensory bin playing Dysgraphia, Writing & Sensory Processing Disorder
There are several skills needed for children to learn to write and print. Visual-Motor Skills, fine motor skills, hand strength and sensory feedback.
Talk to your child's school about your concerns and their needs. They may be qualified for an Individualized Education Program. (IEP) When your child has an IEP or 504 plan you can request your child have extra help at school and accommodations.
- your child uses an iPad or computer
- shorter assignments
- use a recorder for notes
- use a voice dictation device 
Visual-Motor Activities
- stacking blocks
- pouring liquid from one to container to another container
- completing mazes
- connect the dots exercises
- completing puzzles
- tracing letters, numbers or shapes
- practice writing in shaving cream, sand or finger paints
- matching shapes
- playing catch
- hitting a balloon back and forth
- bean bag throwing games
- stringing beads by color and size
Hand Strength Activities
- squeezing clothespins
- building with blocks
- climbing
- using tongs and tweezers
- squeezing glue bottles
- popping bubble wrap
- crumbling paper
- cutting with scissors
- playing with play dough
- squeezing a wet sponge
- spraying with spray bottles
- hole punching paper
- hide and find objects in putty
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DISCLAIMER: I am not an Occupational Therapist. I am an adult who has Sensory Processing Disorder, a sensory parent and a Grandma. The information on this website is not medical advice and does not replace the information that your child's therapists gives you. These are just ideas and information that I have learned myself over the years of being a parent and an adult living with SPD. If you are concerned for your child, please always seek medical attention through a family doctor, pediatrician or therapist. This website is for suggestions and informational purposes only. Each child is different and what works for one child may not for another because all children have different needs. Please always consult with a professional. Amazon offers a small commission on products sold through their affiliate links on my website.  Each of your purchases through links on my website for Amazon affiliation links or sponsored links support me but no additional cost to you so thank you. I appreciate it so much!