Writing and the ASD kiddo - Mothering Forums
Forum Jump: 
 
Thread Tools
#1 of 9 Old 12-10-2011, 09:10 PM - Thread Starter
 
butterflylover's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jun 2011
Posts: 52
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)

Does anyone else have a kiddo with ASD who hates writing and has great difficulty with it? Are there any special handwriting tools (special pencils, etc) that you have used to help? My dd hates writing and reading and is failing both academically. I'm just not sure what to do to get her to enjoy these subjects or improve at them. Homework is becoming an all-night affair with frustration and tears. I'm really at the end of my rope. She is in OT and ST at school and is in an ASD classroom and is mainstreamed 1/2 day. Help! 

butterflylover is offline  
#2 of 9 Old 12-11-2011, 06:09 AM
 
EarthRootsStarSoul's Avatar
 
Join Date: Nov 2009
Posts: 824
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 10 Post(s)

How old is she?  My advice is to completely stop anything that produces conflict.  If you keep pushing her, she is going to dig in her heels keep resisting.  This is really scary as a parent you are going to have a lot of anxiety about just stopping reading and writing lessons for a while.  You need to give her space for her to reset her attitude.  It sounds like her development in literacy is slower than her peers, so back track a few years with your expectations.  Get books about her favorite subject and read them to her, rather than expecting her to read them.  Then anything else you do about reading and writing needs to be fun.  Let her dictate her writing to you and you write it.  Write letters to her favorite relatives and friends and let her decorate the paper with some drawings or glitter.  Write a little love note to her and hide it in her lunch. 


bellyhair.giftreehugger.gif     coolshine.gif      greenthumb.gif     read.gif
EarthRootsStarSoul is offline  
#3 of 9 Old 12-11-2011, 06:29 AM
 
ErinYay's Avatar
 
Join Date: Aug 2008
Location: Ft. Wayne, IN
Posts: 705
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)

My soon-to-be 14-yr-old birthdaughter (open adoption, awesome situation) is spectrumy and has agraphia and struggled with writing to the point where she started hating school in 2nd grade- has the OT considered that your kiddo might have something like that, that causes real pain and difficulty in writing? M has found that typing is helpful, but dictating (she uses Dragon NaturallySpeaking) allows her to put her very eloquent and complicated ideas onto paper in a painless way.


Doctors aren't out to kill you or your children. Childbirth isn't inherently safe. Science is actually smarter than your intuition. Lighten up. Use sunscreen.

ErinYay is offline  
#4 of 9 Old 12-11-2011, 07:27 AM
 
Linda on the move's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jun 2005
Location: basking in the sunshine
Posts: 10,562
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 32 Post(s)
I would request an iep/504 meeting ASAP and get accommodations in place. She shouldn't be "failing" anything.

I thinking reading aloud from a wonderful a book is great long term strategy, though it may not help in the short term. Because she is so young, I think home work should be limited to 30 minutes per night, and anything above that should be excused as part of her accommodations. She needs downtime, even more so than most kids her age.

I'll write more later.

but everything has pros and cons  shrug.gif

Linda on the move is online now  
#5 of 9 Old 12-11-2011, 12:40 PM
 
BookGoddess's Avatar
 
Join Date: Nov 2005
Location: Gryffindor Tower at Hogwarts
Posts: 6,365
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 1 Post(s)


Quote:
Originally Posted by butterflylover View Post

Does anyone else have a kiddo with ASD who hates writing and has great difficulty with it? Are there any special handwriting tools (special pencils, etc) that you have used to help? My dd hates writing and reading and is failing both academically. I'm just not sure what to do to get her to enjoy these subjects or improve at them. Homework is becoming an all-night affair with frustration and tears. I'm really at the end of my rope. She is in OT and ST at school and is in an ASD classroom and is mainstreamed 1/2 day. Help! 



DD has a regular pencil with a special gripper on it that gives her more sensory input as she writes.  The school's Special Ed teacher created it just for her (the teacher is pretty creative!).   My DD's OT teacher also helps with writing issues by looking for ways to improve legibility.   DD actually likes writing and has improved with OT help and modifications. 

Does your daughter have an IEP?  Sorry, I'm not familiar with your story.  


Normal is just a setting on your dryer.
BookGoddess is offline  
#6 of 9 Old 12-12-2011, 08:07 AM
 
Linda on the move's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jun 2005
Location: basking in the sunshine
Posts: 10,562
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 32 Post(s)

sorry this is long.....

 

Nearly all (or all) kids on the spectrum have fine motor issues. As much they I do believe they should continue to work on them, I think there is a limit as to how much they should work on them each day. ALL children need down time after school and a chance to do other things they enjoy. This is MORE true for kids on the spectrum -- for whom school is more difficult and more stressful. Not only does school generally provide the opposite kind of sensory input that is best for them, but many of the *fun* activities included at school that are designed to give the kids are break, are simply stressful, confusing, or overwhelming for ASD kids.

 

Therefore, I strongly, strongly believe in home work limits. Even in 7th grade, I insisted an a 1 hour limit. For a younger child, I would stick with 30 minutes. I would leave the rest undone and email the teacher and copy the principal. I would also request, in writing, a new IEP meeting to go over this (and a few other changes).  (The way this played out for my DD is that we sat down in a meeting and decided what was most important, which we all agreed was math. She had an extra period in her day with the sp ed teacher that was devoted to completely other assignments, and she had one few regular class than most kids her age)

 

It is completely and totally unreasonable to expect a ASD to do as much writing as their neurotypical peers.

 

Next, I feel that it is extremely important that time after school be designed around what the ASD needs that they don't get at school -- specificity, their sensory diet. When my DD's sensory needs are met, her brain works better and she handles stress better. Doing excessive homework rather than meeting those sensory needs makes school and school work harder, not easier.

 

Also, every child should get to spend some time every day doing things they enjoy. This isn't rocket science. Part of an ASD kid's evenings should be spent having fun -- if that is cooking something with mom, playing Wii with a sibling, or just lining up rocks over and over. Some down time to just be themselves and relax.

 

The grade limit for my DD was a C, if she couldn't make a C doing work at a level that she could manage, she got more accommodations. If an ASD child is failing, it's time for more accommodations. It's helpful to take a long term view of things -- sn kids can stay in the public school system until they are 21. There really isn't any big hurry for any specific skill. Different kids on the spectrum have very different capabilities and will require different accommodations throughout their eduction. My DD was behind on reading when she was 6 and 7, but then the light bulb came on and she quickly shot past the "norm."  One of the spectrum kids at her school is 16 and stills struggles with reading, but is a literature class that only reads novels and he listens to them on tape. He is brilliant with electronics, though, and he does have a solid future ahead of him.

 


but everything has pros and cons  shrug.gif

Linda on the move is online now  
#7 of 9 Old 12-13-2011, 06:18 PM
 
buttercup's Avatar
 
Join Date: Dec 2002
Location: Florida
Posts: 580
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)

Have you asked the school about getting her evaluated for and using an assistive technology device (AT)?  She can still receive her OT services to strengthen her fine motor skills and use the AT device to complete school work and tests.  It allows her to easily show her knowledge vesus her worrying and struggling with trying to write her knowledge on paper.  It has made a world of difference for my ASD daughter.

buttercup is offline  
#8 of 9 Old 12-14-2011, 12:56 PM
 
FarmerBeth's Avatar
 
Join Date: Mar 2011
Location: Northeastern Nova Scotia, Canada
Posts: 808
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)

Great previous posts here.  One accommodation we found helpful for our ASD son in the past was to have him be given the same homework and school work but with less volume.  This works if your child can understand the subject matter, but cannot operate at the same speed as the other students.  A lot of school work repeats the same stuff and it's not really necessary to have the stress of a high volume of work.

 

Another thing that helped when our DS was behind in reading (he's caught up in all subjects at this point)was having activities he enjoyed that involved it.  For him, this was roll playing games and and simulation based strategy games (like Civilizations) , as well as Japanese anime with subtitles.  He would pause the show when he needed time to read.  I know electronics aren't easy to keep in balance for some kids, but for us it got us over the initial hump of wanting to read.

 

On a practical note regarding handwriting, we had some success with the OT program "handwriting without tears".  We also found learning to type has helped for the older grades, and having something visually on the page to align margins helps  I think some of DS's fine motor skills came along from other activities he does enjoy, in his case especially sculpting and pastry baking.  Finding a way to enjoy something your body has helped you make really improves outlook about what your hands can do.  In my own case, I think playing an instrument brought me along with handwriting problems I had as a child, so find something he enjoys.


Busy keeping up with three children and an awful lot of chickens!

FarmerBeth is offline  
#9 of 9 Old 12-14-2011, 03:33 PM
 
karne's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jul 2005
Posts: 3,623
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)

My experience is w/dysgraphia, so hopefully it's still helpful.  We have used lots of devices-slant board, paper with raised lines and margins to give a "feel" for where to place the letters, as well as many pencil grips, and a weighted pencil.  One of my kids had years of OT.  Frankly, it has been time and maturity that has made the most difference.  We are moving onto keyboarding for my oldest, and I will move in that direction much sooner for my youngest.

 

While I agree in theory with the idea of continuing with writing, and practicing, in reality, for my kids, difficulty with writing has been incredibly inhibiting in terms of their development as writers, their willingness to take risks with word usage, and their sense of themselves as being able to express themselves in their own voice.  If I had to do it over again, I would definitely accept the OT piece, but I would also very quickly start looking at adaptive technologies.  Speech to text programs are very common now.  Even using a laptop and spell check makes a world of difference.  I would do everything in my power to take away any unpleasant pieces related to writing, taking the long view of wanting to have my child eventually be able to express themselves with text.  

 

Writing is such a complex process.  My youngest, who has very high academic abilities, struggles enormously with all aspects of writing.  Pressure does not help at all.  My oldest is finally learning how to "see" her voice on the page with the use of the computer.  It is what it is--no amount of pushing or making her write physically, was going to make her a writer.

 

In terms of homework, I believe there is a point at which no more learning is going to happen, and as a parent, you need to state clearly where that point is for your child.  

karne is offline  
Reply

Tags
Special Needs Parenting

Quick Reply
Message:
Drag and Drop File Upload
Drag files here to attach!
Upload Progress: 0
Options

Register Now

In order to be able to post messages on the Mothering Forums forums, you must first register.
Please enter your desired user name, your email address and other required details in the form below.
User Name:
If you do not want to register, fill this field only and the name will be used as user name for your post.
Password
Please enter a password for your user account. Note that passwords are case-sensitive.
Password:
Confirm Password:
Email Address
Please enter a valid email address for yourself.
Email Address:

Log-in

Human Verification

In order to verify that you are a human and not a spam bot, please enter the answer into the following box below based on the instructions contained in the graphic.



User Tag List

Thread Tools
Show Printable Version Show Printable Version
Email this Page Email this Page


Forum Jump: 

Posting Rules  
You may post new threads
You may post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off
Trackbacks are On
Pingbacks are On
Refbacks are Off