Home > School and Learning > Learning Differences > Gifted Education > Daughter Diagnosed as Dysgraphic
|

Expert Iconexpert advice MORE

Daughter Diagnosed as Dysgraphic

Gifted and Talented Expert Advice from Noreen H. Joslyn, LISW, ACSW

Q: There seems to be very little information available on dysgraphia. My nine-year-old daughter was just identified as dysgraphic. She spoke early (full sentences at 15 months) and read early as well. She has an IQ of 147. When she wasn't producing (writing), her teachers kept telling me not to worry -- but I should have been worried. Please let me know what I can do to help her.

A: This must be very frustrating for both you and your daughter! Due to the many children being diagnosed with learning disabilities these days, it is my belief that there is now a tendency to avoid labeling young elementary children too early because they might improve on their own. Special education services are also very overburdened. With this in mind, some children may wait for diagnosis and for help. This sounds like the case with your daughter.

Dysgraphia is a serious dysfunction in the ability to write fluently and coherently in a developmentally appropriate manner. It is diagnosed by a learning specialist using standardized tests and writing samples. An excellent source of information on this topic is the book Dysgraphia: The Writing Dilemma by Regina Richards. This book gives recommendations for teachers, parents, and students. In addition, visit the Council for Exceptional Children (CEC) website at www.cec.sped.org. The CEC provides fact sheets for parents to download on various learning disabilities. I suggest you investigate this informative site.

Gifted children understand only too well the problems and frustrations a learning disability brings. It is important that you help your little girl understand that this is not her fault, it is not occurring because she isn't trying hard enough, and that she isn't "stupid." (A sad word that LD kids have used to describe themselves to me.) This is just another way that her interesting brain works! With some self-help skills such as a use of a word processor, proofreading habits, and guidance from a learning specialist your daughter can make many gains in her writing ability.

I have only been able to give you some limited feedback here on the very large topic of dysgraphia, but if you look up the references I have suggested I believe you will find them helpful. Good luck.

More on: Expert Advice

Noreen Joslyn is a licensed independent social worker in the state of Ohio and is a member of the Academy of Certified Social Workers. She has a master's degree in Social Work, specializing in family and children, from the University of Pittsburgh. She is a psychiatric social worker in private practice with Ken DeLuca, Ph.D. & Associates, where she counsels parents and children.


Please note: This "Expert Advice" area of FamilyEducation.com should be used for general information purposes only. Advice given here is not intended to provide a basis for action in particular circumstances without consideration by a competent professional. Before using this Expert Advice area, please review our General and Medical Disclaimers.

highlights

Vote Now for the Children's & Teen Choice Book Awards
Voting is open now through May 3 for the Children's and Teen Choice Book Awards — the only national book awards program where the winning author, illustrator, and books of the year are selected by young readers. Encourage your child to vote for his favorites today!

Find Today's Newest & Best Children's Books!
Looking for newly released books for your child? Try our new Book Finder tool to search for new books by age, type, and theme, and create reading lists for kids!

10 Best E-Reading Apps for Kids
Whether your child likes reading fiction, non-fiction, magazines, or storybooks, these top-rated e-reading apps will help build her own personal library and encourage her love of reading.

Registered for Kindergarten — Now What?
Wondering what to do now that you've signed your child up for kindergarten? Try our award-winning Kindergarten Readiness app! This easy-to-use checklist comes with games and activities to help your child build essential skills for kindergarten. Download the Kindergarten Readiness app today!

stay connected

Sign up for our free email newsletters and receive the latest advice and information on all things parenting.

Enter your email address to sign up or manage your account.

Facebook icon Facebook icon Follow Us on Pinterest

editor’s picks