Not apraxia, but something else? Advice?

iVillage Member
Registered: 08-10-2006
Not apraxia, but something else? Advice?
Wed, 03-24-2010 - 1:55pm


I am asking for a dear friend of mine, her son has ADD (more inattentive than hyperactive) for which he is on meds for and they work. He is a very smart kid, however when it comes time to take a test, or do homework, etc., he has a hard time getting whats in his brain translated to writing it down. Its like a disconnect perhaps? If you quiz him verbally, he can tell you backwards/forwards, etc. We think it is more than just test anxiety as it happens at other times. I know apraxia is a verbal thing, but anyone ever heard of just not being able to formulate your thoughts into written expression?

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iVillage Member
Registered: 11-28-2006
Wed, 03-24-2010 - 3:55pm

Hi christine,
Has he been tested? My kids have a co-morbid called Dysgraphia. It's basically a disorder of written expression and it means they have a hard time translating their thoughts from their head to paper. It's also very commen with Aspergers.

Does Dyslexia run in their family? 50 percent of kids with ADD or ADHD have a learning disability on top of it, so I would suggest she ask the school for a full physco-educational evaluation. My kids are great spellers UNTIL they have to write a paragraph and then it all goes downhill. They also have problems with punctuation and grammer, and organizing their thoughts on paper.

If this sounds like him, then I would get him test.

iVillage Member
Registered: 03-25-2003
Thu, 03-25-2010 - 10:17am

That certainly exists (though my kid has issues with it verbally as well); sorry, my brain isn't coming up with the term--they usually just say "problems with written expression".

One of the issues for MY kid (he's ADHD-inattentive, too, mostly) has always been handwriting itself--especially at young ages (KG-4th grade, say), there were so many things he was having to THINK about in writing--how to shape the letters, spacing between words, spelling, punctuation, etc., etc., etc--other than the actual content. And as you grow, they want proper paragraph formation, so he'd bog down in figuring out the best possible topic sentence (we worked for awhile on writing the body of the parag first and THEN filling in the topic sentence). And on, and on. What's helped the most is having him type. Now in 7th grade, he's allowed to do all his written classwork on a computer (netbook) as well as essays & tests. The use of a computer seems to take off some of the pressure, because he can go back and edit without having to rewrite everything.

She might also want to check out Dragon NaturallySpeaking; it lets you dictate into a computer. It's not perfect (nothing is!)--often schools will have access to a copy where maybe he could try it out & see if he likes it? My kid liked using it for awhile, though he kept getting stuck on trying to make it understand him perfectly!

If he hasn't had a full educational workup (with the school?), then I'd recommend that--ADHD kids often have LD issues too, and the best thing, of course, is to try to nail down what the exact issue is.