Jul 102013

DO you need a Writing program for Dysgraphia?
Do you need a visual and/or hands-on method for teaching writing skills to your child?

Recommended homeschooling writing programs for children who struggle with writing, written expression or dysgraphia

Can you teach your child at home? YES! When your child has learned to write letters with proper formation, spacing, and with relative ease, you will undoubtedly want to develop his writing skills more fully. This section will help you explore the options for home remediation through inexpensive writing programs and to help your child overcome a dislike for writing.

Dysgraphia and Written Expression Difficulties

Are you unsure whether your child has dysgraphia? Does your child reverse numbers and letters, have trouble with spacing, letter size, writing straight, or hate writing? These symptoms may indicate your child has a developmental problem called is dysgraphia, and/or may have fine motor difficulties that contribute to difficulty with writing. This page will help you learn more about dysgraphia.

Handwriting Programs for a Child with Dysgraphia

The writing programs recommended in this section are designed to help you teach the skill of handwriting using incremental and simple teaching methods. If your child has fine motor skills delays, it may be beneficial to seek Occupational Therapy services, however there are several good writing programs for working with your child at home.

writing programs

Grammar, Spelling and Language Arts programs for children with learning disabilities

Spelling, grammar, punctuation, and other matters of mechanics are important for helping your child convey his or her thoughts well. This section provides information on writing programs suitable for teaching these skills to your child.

Writing Assistive Technology for Children who have Dysgraphia

For any child that struggles with writing, whether from handwriting or difficulties with composition, using assistive technology can enable a child to stay on grade level in other content-based subjects. Since you are homeschooling your learning abled child, you have the ability to easily implement and use assistive technology to help your child. You might also want to check out this brief guide to assistive technology for children with dysgraphia.
Thanks be to God for all my blessings on Earth.

Jul 102013

Writing Assistive Technology can help your child SUCCEED with composition writing.

Does your child struggle with writing and spelling in spite of educational help?
Have you reached a point where continuing to work on basic writing skills seems fruitless?

Guess what? There’s HOPE with Writing Assistive Technology!

Providing your child with writing assistive technology will help your child create great written compositions. His responses match his thought levels because Writing Assistive Technology can encourage your child to write more.

Writing Assistive Technology is a great way to let your learning abled child work at grade level in science, social studies, and language arts when he’s not specifically working on developing his writing skills as a separate instructional area.

Let me share some of the Writing Assistive Technology tools we have used.  One of my favorite products for spelling correction is Ginger’s writing solution. Ginger is spelling and grammar checking software. Having Ginger is like having an interpreter for dyslexia-speak built into a word processor. There are very few phonetic spellings my son creates which Ginger cannot adequately interpret.

Another great tool is Speech-To-Text software. A lot of PC’s have this built-in capability. You have to have a built-in microphone, headset, or separate microphone to utilize this writing assistive technology. The biggest trick is finding the software on your computer and activating it. You can usually find this software somewhere under the configuration options for the display on your PC. The speech-to-text function is usually provided as an “accessibility” feature. You will need to check with your specific PC manufacturer to find the exact location.
Writing Assistive Technology
You can always purchase Speech-To-Text software too.  We use Dragon Naturally Speaking dictation software. This software has been on the market a long time, and probably does the best possible job of translating spoken text into written text. Dragon Naturally Speaking dictation software, like all speech-to-text software, requires ‘training’ time. In order to function properly, the software has to be used by the dictator (your child). Then misspellings have to be corrected manually for a short period of time before the program will consistently type out whatever your child dictates. It takes a little time and patience to get the software properly set.

Unfortunately, person who will be using the software has to do the training. That means it can be a frustrating experience for your child. I think it is easier for teens to be reasoned with regarding the temporary frustration in training the software. However, once the software has been trained to recognize your child’s speech, it is a great writing assistive technology tool!!

These two writing assistive technology tools are both used in conjunction with a good word-processor. WordPerfect and Microsoft Word are probably the two most popular word processors. Either of the writing assistive technology tools above can be used with either word processor. If you happen to have an Apple computer, you can get Microsoft Word for the Apple computers. Ginger Keyboard Software app is available for Apple’s iOS. Pair that Ginger app with an Apple iPad for portable writing assistive technology.

An Apple Laptop computer with Microsoft Word and Dragon Dictate for Apple computers plus Ginger’s revolutionary writing solution will be the best possible set-up for your learning abled kid to become an independent writer using writing assistive technology.

Personally, I have a Toshiba Satellite laptop computer. It has been a great workhorse and I use Dragon Naturally Speaking software on it as my own writing assistive technology! It’s almost five years old and I haven’t had a single bit of trouble with it. Other brands I’ve had haven’t lasted this long.

If you need additional information and curricula for helping your child overcome his dysgraphia, check out Two Great Writing Programs for Homeschooling a Child with a Written Expression Learning Disability (Dysgraphia) and Curricula for Homeschooing and Teaching Handwriting to a Child with Dysgraphia.