What does a dysgraphia diagnosis mean?

dysgraphia-diagnosisThis is a story about a dysgraphia diagnosis.

Josh struggles in school because writing is so hard for him. Even though he tries writing until his hand hurts, he can’t ever seem to form the letters correctly or put his thoughts on paper. He has trouble copying from the board and he can’t take legible notes. He has trouble writing down his homework assignments which frustrates his parents because they can’t help him with his homework. They can’t decipher what he writes. His teachers ask him to rewrite his papers because they can’t read them. His spelling is abysmal and his grammar, punctuation and capitalization are just as poor. Josh even struggles in math class because his numbers get mixed up. One column of numbers somehow ends up in the other column and his fours look like nines and his sixes never seemed to be closed so they are misinterpreted as ones. [Read more…]

Causes of Dysgraphia

dysgraphia-tutoring (2)I was dismayed to see how many people research the causes of dysgraphia. Dysgraphia is a not a disease or a fungus or an affliction like frostbite. Dysgraphia describes a difficulty some brains have communicating actions that require the body’s fine motor skills, like writing and shoe tying. [Read more…]

What is dysgraphia?

dysgaphia-helpWhat is dysgraphia? If you read most definitions you’d come away with the idea that it is some disease that needs treating, but that is far from true. Dysgraphia is a term that describes a communication path between the brain and the fingers. That’s it. [Read more…]

Dyscalculia Test

dyscalculia-helpYes, there is a dyscalculia test!

Thousands of children, teens, and adults, go through life with a math disorder called dyscalculia. Often it goes untreated. Parents say kids are lazy. Teachers complain that they’re not trying. And friends think they’re making it up.

With their parent’s permission, students can take a dyscalculia test to determine whether they are affected by it or not.

Some signs of dyscalculia can include:

  • Difficulty keeping numbers in columns
  • Confusion with math concepts?
  • Trouble with word problems?
  • Crying while doing math homework?
  • Switching to addition while doing a subtraction problem or vice versa?
  • Forgetting addition facts and multiplication facts?
  • Failure to remember math steps?
  • Changing the sequence of numerals when copying them

Older students who have difficulties with math can bring this list to the attention of their parents and teachers and ask if the adults will consider testing for dyscalculia. We have been testing students for dyscalculia for years and find these questions very helpful in determining whether testing is needed.

Students should try to provide details instead of just “yes” or “no.” Specific examples and additional comments on how the student has been coping with the problem will help.

The school can evaluate if a student has a math disorder by comparing his abilities to his score on a math assessment. When a significant discrepancy occurs, schools will provide remediation. When a school modifies math courses to better match the student’s needs, math becomes easier. With this modification for a math disorder, students often achieve at or above the level of their peers.

The following six strategies often help right away:

  • Keep numbers in columns by turning lined paper sideways so the lines become vertical guides.
  • Cover up all columns except those being worked on.
  • Use a calculator when appropriate.
  • Circle the + , –, or other arithmetic signs before doing the computation.
  • When working on a word problem, write down the information and what you’re trying to solve for. Use whatever method works best for that task such as making a list, drawing, or underlining.
  • Stay on task when doing math problems by talking to yourself out loud if you’re alone or sub-vocalize.

Children and teens do not have to suffer low grades and poor test scores in math. Dyscalculia Testing followed by appropriate modification at school or tutoring helps.

Dyslexia Diagnosis: Does my child have dyslexia

Dyslexia impacts all areas of life, and thus an early dyslexia diagnosis is important. Reading is one of the most important skills your child needs to master. He will need reading in every subject in school and in almost every facet of life. Yet, millions of kids have poor reading skills, which may be due to lack of practice or something more organic as in Suzy’s case; she has dyslexia. Her case is typical. [Read more…]

NY SAT & PSAT Test Prep

NY SAT Prep and PSAT Prep Advice

Whether your New York based  SAT test preparation consists of working on your own, in a group or class, or one-to-one with a qualified SAT tutor, the following advice will help you get the best scores possible. [Read more…]

Help with Homework

Homework debate: Too much homework vs. Ban homework; No homework vs. Is homework beneficial?

What are parents and children to do solve the homework dilemma?

Homework has become one of the biggest issues for parents and kids. It brings with it anger, frustration, tears, fears and family disharmony. Jack, a nine year old, often spends all afternoon and evening doing homework, sometimes until eleven o’clock at night. In addition, he always needs help with it, so his mom and dad got him a homework helper from a tutoring service. [Read more…]

List of ADHD Symptoms & Treatments

List of ADHD SymptomsList of ADHD Symptoms:

  • Has difficulty paying close attention to details or makes careless mistakes on homework or tests.
  • Has difficulty sustaining attention in tasks or play activities.
  • Does not seem to listen when spoken to directly.
  • Does not follow through on instructions and fails to finish schoolwork.
  • Has difficulty organizing tasks.
  • Avoids schoolwork for long periods of time.
  • Often misplaces or loses assignments or books.
  • Becomes distracted easily.
  • Seems to be fidgeting all the time.
  • Has difficulty remaining seated. [Read more…]

Diagnosing ADHD

Diagnosing ADHD is not only somewhat controversial in today’s culture, but also not black and white by any means. Attention deficit disorder in children, also referred to as attention deficit hyperactivity disorder, refers to children who often have difficulty focusing their attention, listening, remembering things, staying still, and/or waiting their turn. [Read more…]

Learning Disabilities Tutor

We’ve been learning disabilities tutors for a long time.  And for some of our students, we’re their mentors and friends for a long time after that. In a world that doesn’t really understand learning disabilities – you sure do find family when you get together. [Read more…]