sensory processing disorder learning materials

Discussion in 'Special Ed 101' started by kim75062, Feb 6, 2017.

  1. kim75062

    kim75062 Active Member

    anyone have any suggestions for my 6 year old? He has serious handwriting issues.

    I'm thinking raised line paper? the yellow half line paper doesn't seem to be working well. any other ideas?
     
  2. KTMom91

    KTMom91 Well-Known Member

    Is he using a regular pencil or one of the larger ones? I've also seen triangular ones that might be easier for him to hold.
     
  3. susiestar

    susiestar Roll With It

    I would experiment with different types of pencils and pencil grips. Each child is different and what feels good/right/helpful for one is not good/right/helpful for another. Don't rule out mechanical pencils either. Some teachers may not like them, but for some students they just work well. When my oldest was your son's age they did not help him with handwriting, but when my youngest was 6, one brand of mechanical pencil actually did feel good to him and he did better with it.

    Also pay attention to other activities that strengthen his hand muscles. Not just handwriting, anything that uses fine muscle coordination and especially the muscles of his dominant hand. Even fidgeting with different textured small balls in his hands while listening to movies is good.

    If he says that his hands hurt after writing, listen to him. Often our kids have problems that lead to muscle pain in their hands after writing. My boys both STILL complain after writing for several pages. I suggest that you push keyboarding skills early for your son with child friendly keyboarding programs. Handwriting, and legible handwriting will of course always be needed, but learning to type is an adaptation that is also important. Schools can provide laptops designed for kids to use to do assignments and to take notes on if your son proves to have the problems my sons have. The name for what my sons have is dysgraphia and it is a learning disorder that is the handwriting equivalent of dyslexia. I have it also. There is little that can be done to improve the bad handwriting if this is the case other than to provide other means of communication. Encouraging him to try to write better, and to let him know that it truly is not his fault is about all that can be done. All the practice in the universe didn't ever improve my handwriting. Or that of either of my son's.

    Luckily, he can learn to type even at his age. It isn't a 'cop out', it is an important life skill. There are many programs like Type to Learn or whatever that he can use and even enjoy that will help him communicate and will help him develop his computer skills also.

    You may want to take a look at some of the on like Occupational Therapy Supply Houses. I don't know the names of any off hand. It has been a long time since I shopped at any, but most have supplies divided by the types of supplies, so you can find things for helping with developing handwriting. Others here might know the names of some supply houses. I do suggest that you look online to see what is available and then check out the party supply houses before buying some of the items. I often found the same items at Occupational Therapist (OT) supply houses, Party supply places, places like Hobby Lobby or Mardel, and School Supply places. I am a tightwad, so if I had to be at more than one of those places anyway, I often remembered who had what and for how much.
     
  4. SomewhereOutThere

    SomewhereOutThere Well-Known Member

    My autistic son can only print. He prints well and neat. He cant write. To print he used a special gummy holder...wish I could recall what it was called.

    In this day and age handwriting is not as important as it once was. My son can keyboard like a champ and most correspondence is handled by keyboarding. Sometimes kids who cant write are allowed to use a keyboard.

    As long as he can print his name, even clumsily, that will work in adulthood. I think it will only get more technical as time goes by.
     
  5. kim75062

    kim75062 Active Member

    Thanks!

    Mines not in school, he's homeschooled but that's a whole other LONG thread lol

    He can type faster then most kids can write at his age. He has an excellent vocabulary and is very expressive but just can not get a thought to paper.

    He does say writing hurts, his hands are going to fall off and some times it's the entire arm is a broken noodle as he's flopping like a dying fish on the floor lol (it's very hard not to laugh at his over dramatic antics).

    To me it seems as though his legibility is getting worse instead of better. Not that it was very Legible to start with.

    I have often wondered about dysgraphia also but haven't brung it up to any of his docs because it didn't seem as important as the rest of his problems at the time.

    I will look for an Occupational Therapist (OT) supply site and see what we can find.

    So far fat preschool pencils and mechanical fatter ones seem to work best. And the triangle shaped tricondria brand black ones are a close second.
     
  6. mof

    mof Momdidntsignupforthis

    There are great grips for pencils...thAt force the correct grip...I've seen great improvement with these when I worked with early writers.
     
  7. susiestar

    susiestar Roll With It

    I remember that very long thread - I was part of why it was long, lol! I suggested using a typing program because it helps them learn the proper way to hold their hands on the keyboard and helps them not learn bad habits that can lead to problems later.

    The things you are describing sound EXACTLY like what we went through with the boys, and much of what I felt as a child. I used to dread penmanship class because it was the only class I had zero chance of succeeding in. Your son may be a Drama Llama about it, but his hands and arms probably are rather painful. Working to build those muscles with different types of exercise can help a LOT. This is an area where that book I recommended, The Out of Sync Child Has Fun by Kranowitz, can help a lot. You can find activities that work on fine motor skills and on the muscles in his arms and do those with him - and not tell him they are to help him write better. It will help and he won't even need to know. He will likely just be having fun.

    Have you considered taking another approach to writing? Having him try to draw the letters rather than write them, to look at it as art instead of writing. It takes longer, and is more for making muscle memory, but it can help for some people. Maybe take his name and turn each letter into something?
     
  8. kim75062

    kim75062 Active Member

    I forgot about that book! I didn't find it at the book store when I was looking for all of them from the list and it completely slipped my mind.

    I was looking at the therapy shop website and they seem to have lots of tweezer type activities. Obviously I'm not willing to pay $20 for plastic tweezers and mini Pom poms from them but I'm sure a trip to the dollar tree with all these activities in mind will be beneficial.

    I have tried the drawing/art idea and he hates it equally. Play dough lasts about 5 mins until he's tired of it and won't use it anymore. He is still very into the logos and builds things with the daily so I'm sure that's helping. Also is thumbs and mouse clicking finger should be in great shape lol