About the speaker: Dr Helen Likierman is a consultant clinical psychologist working with families and children where there are emotional, social, behavioural or learning concerns. Visit Helen's website at www.psykidz.co.uk.
Further information about this Talk
Visit Helen's website at www.psykidz.co.uk.
To get hold of Valerie Muter's and Helen Likierman's latest book on how parents can help with dyslexia, dyspraxia and related learning difficulties please click here.
Key Points Covered in This Talk:
- Dyspraxia: The Early Years - How Parents Can Help: It is important to act early rather than to just wait as children are unlikely to outgrow the problems associated with dyspraxia. This can be difficult given how hard early diagnosis of dyspraxia can be. Parents should therefore be doing the following sorts of things anyway and more so if their child is having some sort of difficulty:
- Build up perceptual and spacial skills with games (e.g. jigsaws, block building, mazes, matching). If you have a child who does have difficulties visio-spatially or with fine motor skills they might not like these type of tasks. It is therefore important to give encouragement.
- Develop fine motor skills by drawing, painting, colouring, dot-to-dot. It is important to break down all the skills into small sections and try and make it fun and have rewards.
- Teach the right pencil grip.
- Practice writing letters the right way.
- Dyspraxia: The Middle Years - How Parents Can Help:
- Cursive writing: Even with computers children still need to write by hand, therefore writing needs to be legible and children need to build up writing speed. Using an exercise book with one page per letter to practice with can be helpful. It is useful to build in rewards to have success with this.
- Touch-typing and keyboard skills: It is essential to build these up and teach them as early as possible. This can be used for homework and (later on) coursework and exams. This will help those who have dyspraxia to get things down on paper, read what they have written and organise their thoughts. It helps with organisation, as having information on the computer rather than on paper is easier to manage for children with dyspraxia.
- Spatial problems: These give rise to specific difficulties in a number of subjects. Therefore give extra support, help and teaching for maths (fractions, geometry), D.T. (Design Technology), science (diagrams), geography (maps).
- Teach note-taking and filing skills: Use transparent folders to put loose papers in, have a dedicated time of the week or day to organise filing / notes, teach the use of headings and bullet-points for note taking.