A Guide to Classroom and At-Home Accommodations for Dyspraxia

Dyspraxia, which is also known as Apraxia, is a learning disability that is marked by difficulty in carrying out routines that require the use of balance, fine-motor skills, and coordination. Usually, we think of these children as merely being “clumsy” or “awkward.” Children with dyspraxia need to treated by an occupational therapist to strengthen their fine and gross motor skills. Verbal Dyspraxia describes a lowered ability to use speech sounds, which is usually the sign of a developmental delay. Verbal Dyspraxia can be separate from or accompany dyspraxia. Children with dyspraxia may also suffer from slightly slurred speech and short-term memory loss.

Are you an educator or parent searching for accommodations to help students with dyspraxia? Well, look no further. Here are some ways that you can make the learning process easier for students with dyspraxia.

Classroom Accommodations: To succeed in the classroom, students with dyspraxia need access to appropriate supports, including:

  • Provide a quiet space to work on balance, fine-motor skills, and coordination exercises
  • Play speech and vocabulary games
  • Allow extra time on tests
  • Allow students to sit close to people who can assist them
  • Provide the student with a choice to work in different positions
  • Provide pencil grips
  • Keep spring-loaded or loop scissors available
  • Give special paper as needed, like raised-line paper or graph paper
  • Allow different writing tools to reduce pencil pressure
  • Provide breaks so the student can move around a few times a day
  • Give students extra time to get from class to class
  • Allow extra time to get changed for the gym and ready for recess
  • Provide teaching notes ahead of time or have a note-taking buddy
  • Provide worksheets that reduce the need to copy, like fill-in-the-blanks or matching
  • Utilize larger print for worksheets, notes, and textbooks
  • Let the student use a computer for writing
  • Provide extra time for tests and writing tasks
  • Allow oral answers on exams
  • Provide checklists, rubrics, step-by-step, and visual directions for assignments
  • Provide extra time to complete work
  • Give directions slowly and in short sentences and phrases
  • Pre-teach physical skills
  • Teach specific handwriting strategies

At Home Accommodations: Parents can support the work that is being done at school, by providing their children with the following at-home accommodations.

  • Work with your child on managing time
  • Provide your child with a variety of writing tools
  • Play speech and vocabulary games
  • Allow extra time to get dressed
  • Provide your child with a laptop and a printer to complete writing assignments
  • Perform balance, fine-motor skills, and coordination exercises
  • Help with homework
  • Be understanding

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