Coping strategies and aids
As well as the Dore Programme, other strategies and support systems can be used to help in the treatment of dyspraxia. However, it is our view that, although these can help people with dyspraxia, they do not help individuals overcome the condition.
Here are extracts from The Dyscovery Centre fact sheet with a number of suggestions to help people with dyspraxia:
- Provide suitable tools to help with difficult tasks, such as adapted scissors (long looped), use of a laptop, instead of having to write, establishing good organisational techniques.
- Work on gross motor strength by introducing suitable sports, e.g. swimming, riding, canoeing, walking and badminton.
- Maintain self-esteem. Look at hobbies that the child will enjoy, such as cookery, photography, gardening, swimming.
- Good liaison with school so that there is a parent partnership.
- 10 minutes a day working on areas that are difficult can have a positive effect on the child. Ask the child what is bothering him or her and keep activities interesting.
Provide coping strategies for children with dyspraxia:
- Shoes with Velcro are easiest. Buy these rather than shoes with laces or buckles.
- Use loose or stretchy clothing, like t-shirts and sweatshirts that are stretchy or have generous openings, making them easier to put on and take off are best.
- If clothing has buttons ensure they have large buttons and buttonholes.
- Buy clothing with clear and distinct front and back.
- Sitting position when studying is important. Adjust the table or chair height to ensure both feet are on the floor.
- Anchor the paper or book to the table, to help stop it from slipping.
- The use of a sloped surface for writing may help.
- Provide suitable writing implements – try a few different pens or pencils to see which type and size of grip works best.
- Avoid using pens and pencils that are hard-tipped.
- Use lined paper or provide guide-lines as this can really help to keep writing straight.
- Practising letter formation and different handwriting patterns can help.
- Teach keyboard skills and provide alternative keyboards.