Starting first grade is one of the most beautiful moments and an important step in the life of all children. But not for all children this beginning is the same. They encounter many difficulties, not only are they faced with a new environment, with new friends, but they also encounter difficulties in learning letters, numbers, reading, writing, etc.
These difficulties become even more pronounced when they occur due to a learning or writing disorder. One of these disorders is dysgraphia, which requires special attention and care, especially from teachers. First of all, they should recognize this problem and then help the student with the difficulty he encounters.
What is dysgraphia?
Dysgraphia is a condition that causes problems in written expression. Dysgraphia is not the result of intellectual deficiency, inadequate instruction or laziness, but it is the result of the variability of the brain during information processing.
Dysgraphia is a transcription disability, meaning it is a writing disorder that involves impaired handwriting, orthographic coding, and finger sequences (muscle movement required for writing).
Dysgraphia is a problem caused by the brain and is not a result of the child being lazy. Although a large number of people have bad handwriting, dysgraphia is a more serious disorder.
In the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders (DSM-IV), dysgraphia is characterized as a learning disability in the category of written expression when writing skills are below those expected given a person’s age. measured through age-appropriate intelligence and education.
For many children diagnosed with dysgraphia, holding a pencil or lining up letters in a notebook is difficult. A significant number of them have problems with writing and expressing thoughts on paper.
This can only be achieved by following a series of techniques and strategies that respond to the child’s needs.
1. The positive environment plays the main role in the child’s development. They feel more encouraged and satisfied when they learn in a positive environment and with a positive classroom climate. They are not discouraged when we make mistakes and are willing to try again, because writing is such a skill. Therefore, it is very necessary for teachers to create a positive environment in the classroom and cooperation and strong support from classmates.
2. Development of drawing and painting activities, which include free drawing, coloring pictures, connecting the dots, etc. Where the most important of them is holding the pencil correctly. They have preferences for different pencils and different colors, but we need to make sure they have good quality pencils. They help them practice their writing.
3. The pencil must be made of good lead material and short, no longer than 6 cm and thick. It is placed between the thumb and forefinger, while the third finger is placed under them.
4. Also to get used to its use and to strengthen fine motor skills, the pencil can be used with an auxiliary material (gloves), which keeps the fingers closed and helps to write correctly.
5. Graph paper is a good material that they can use to write, especially in the subject of mathematics. The lines on the graph paper help keep the columns straight and help children focus.
6. Whiteboard, where the child can write or draw with large letters or different figures, which help him with muscle movement.
7. Holding the hand to help the child maintain direction and write from left to right.
8. Development of sciptographic activities such as: preparing letters on small labels with colored material (cardboard or paper) and choosing them to form the word, according to what is given.
Drawing numbers or letters according to those shown with dots, which helps the child to practice and maintain direction.
Filling in letters or numbers in the blanks according to the word or pattern given as an example at the beginning, which help him practice writing and keep direction.
9. Development of various activities to encourage habits for sensory-motor coordination of hand and finger movements in writing, psychomotor education, control of balanced sitting posture, correct body position, etc. These include standing and cornering, providing a desk, chair with support that focuses on the student’s body posture. Orderly placement, in balance of the book with the page, notebook and work tools.
10. Development of exercises and activities with letters in relief, coloring and cutting them, forming them with plasticine, forming them and working with different materials, which help a lot in developing motor skills, strengthening control and coordination.
11. Imitation – the teacher must write slowly, accurately and legibly, because the student often imitates him, when he models and writes in front of him.
12. Giving the student more time to complete the tasks, because due to the difficulty, he works more slowly.
13. Reading is very important to improve writing. The more students read, the more they will become familiar with words, ways of expression, types of texts, etc. And especially reading aloud, because the combination of seeing, reading and listening helps a lot in memorizing what they have read.
If you want to help your student, then start practicing them!