It is not possible to diagnose Dysgraphia by simply examining a sample of handwriting. The individual in question has to be examined by a qualified clinician. We are simply providing the reader with some general information on the subject. If you suspect that one of your students is having unusual writing difficulties, you should seek the advice of a trained Special Education specialist or physician specialist. Difficulties with writing will often lead to differences of opinion among teachers and parents, and they may cause the student a considerable amount of frustration. Frequently, the student`s difficulties with organizing concepts and expressing them in writing are interpreted as signs of poor motivation, laziness, carelessness or excessive speed. While these interpretations may be accurate in some cases, a teacher or parent who is examining a student’s writing may detect dysgraphic problem patterns which, of course, would be outside the student’s control.
The following is a list of signs and symptoms to look for as they may indicate dysgraphia
1. Handwriting which is poor or illegible
2. Inconsistent letter formation, letter slant and space between words
3. Unfinished letters or words
4. Mixture of lower and upper case letters
5. Poor alignment (failure to remain on the line), use of margins and poor organization of page
6. Cramped or unusual grip when holding the pencil
7. Awkward wrist, body or paper position
8. Slow speed when writing or copying
9. Heavy reliance on vision, the student paying close attention to his hand as he writes
10. Talking to self when writing
11. Excessive writing fatigue
Some programs like Fonts 4 Teachers have proved to improve students handwriting greatly. As a result, some schools in Los Angeles are adopting the program for students with dysgraphia problems and with learning disabilities in general.
Ramon Abajo, Handwring Expert and Teacher of the Year