Many children and adults have trouble getting thoughts onto paper. It is common to be caught staring at the page with nothing coming out. So how can we help kids order their thoughts and ideas to take that next step of putting pen to paper? Here are some in the moment strategies that may help children with planning and ideation difficulties to streamline their thoughts through other means before then having the cohesiveness to write it down.
Children with auditory processing difficulties often have difficulty understanding instructions that they have been given. It may be that due to too much competing background noise, internal processing difficulties, they were not ready to receive the information or the way that the instruction was given. Here are some in the moment tips that may help a child to understand the information that they have been given:
When OT’s look at handwriting, they are assessing a wide range of skills. All of these skills are needed to do something as simple as write your own name. This infographic looks at the different levels of skills needed for handwriting success:
(1) Foundational skills of being able to complete academic tasks; body regulation, sensory processing and engagement/motivation. These skills allow us to stay seated at our desk, feel calm and alert, be willing to engage in the activity and work in the surrounding space.
(2) Systems skills needed to carry out the more complex skills; posture, vision and listening. These skills allow us to be physically orientated to the task, be ready to take in the information needed and feel comfortable at our desk.
(3) Higher level motor skills needed to carry out the task: bilateral skills (two hands), coordination and fine motor skills. These allow us to do things such as hold a pencil, manoeuvre the page and write letters with precision.
(4) These are called executive functioning skills; attention, memory, planning. These skills allow us to think through a task, solve any problems, come up with ideas and work out what we are going to do next.
Depending on the difficulty that a child may be having, an OT may start at any level of skill. Each of these skill areas contribute to the overall success of handwriting at home and school!
Have any questions or comments? Get in touch by emailing calmandconnected.com.au or call 0430 645 086