Illegible handwriting, also known as dysgraphia, is the primary reason for referrals to therapists practicing in school-based settings. Although handwriting instruction is the responsibility of teachers, the therapist's role is in the identification of the motor, sensory, and perceptual deficits underlying dysgraphia. In this course you will learn signs and symptoms of the three different types of dysgraphia and be able to identify functional handwriting challenges in school-age children. Assessment tools used to determine recognition of dysgraphia will be discussed with specific case examples. Viewers will ascertain a variety of remedial activities along with functional adaptations that can be used to assist children with success in functional written communication skills for scholastic achievement.
Jenny L. Clark, OTR/L, BCP (AOTA Board Certification in Pediatrics), has helped children over the past 25 years as a licensed pediatric occupational therapist working as a speaker, consultant, private practitioner at her own clinic (Jenny’s Kids, Inc.), school-based occupational therapist, independent contractor for early intervention services, author, and inventor. Her Sensory Processing Disorder Kit: Simulations and Solutions for Parents, Teachers, and Therapist (AAPC 2006) won the 2007 media in excellence video award from Autism Society of America. Her passion for developing new approaches to therapy can be seen in her diverse contributions to the field, including: the evidence-based curriculum material Learn to Move, Move to Learn: Sensorimotor Early Childhood Activity Themes (AAPC 2004), and the sequel Learn to Move, Moving Up! Sensorimotor Elementary School Activity Themes (AAPC 2009). Jenny was a contributing author for the book Autism Spectrum Disorders: A Handbook for Parents and Professionals (Greenwood Publishing Group 2007), as well as the author of a chapter in Autism Spectrum Disorders: Foundations, Characteristics, and Effective Strategies (Pearson Publishing 2011). Most recently, Jenny was the technical reviewer for The Everything Parents Guide to Sensory Processing Disorder (Terri Mauro, Adams Media 2014). Jenny is the inventor of the patent-pending “Weigh” Cool Bracelet (www.abilitations.com) and her most recent creation, Letter Treasure Hunt handwriting game (Therapro 2014). She can be reached at www.SPDconnection.com.
In the first chapter of this course, Jenny Clark discusses neurological characteristics and causes of dysgraphia. Participants will identify the statistical impact dysgraphia has on a child’s functional performance in school. Clark reviews the signs and symptoms of dysgraphia for clear identification.
Participants will learn to differentiate between the three types of dysgraphia: dyslexic, motor, and spatial dysgraphia. They will learn to select specific assessment tools to ascertain dysgraphia indicators and develop a repertoire of clinical observations to supplement evaluation information.
Jenny Clark demonstrates how to develop a list of compensatory strategies for accommodations and modifications that can be implemented in the school setting. Participants will learn how to apply technology tools for practical use to help students with successful academic achievement. They will be able to implement remedial strategies to address dysgraphia needs for productive outcomes.
Through case studies, participants will understand how skilled clinical reasoning impacts outcomes for motor, spatial, and dyslexic dysgraphia.