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Dyspraxia - Developmental Co-ordination Disorder 

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Does your child already have a diagnosis of Dyspraxia or do they simply find many areas concerned with movement, balance and spatial awareness difficult?

Do they find some of the following challenging?

Key Stage 1 & 2 (5 - 11 years)

Fine Motor Skills

  • Tying shoelaces

  • Buttons and zips

  • Letter formation and spacing

  • Copying from board to book

Gross Motor Skills

  • Generally clumsy

  • Tripping up and bumping into things

  • Poor spatial awareness

  • Timing of movement difficult

General Organisation

  • Having everything needed for school

  • Dressing and undressing for PE or swimming

  • Sequencing information whether thinking, written, speech or movement

  • Unable to concentrate with background noise

Left / Right awareness

  • Challenges with scissors, knife and fork, unscrewing lids

  • Confusion of left and right

  • Not able to ride a two wheeled bike

  • Coordinating movements on the left and right side of the body

Key Stage 3 & 4 (11 - 16 years)

  • Difficulty copying or making notes from the board

  • Relatively slow writing ability. May print letters rather then write cursively

  • Poor organisation and planning – arriving late, missing materials, homework etc

  • Easily distracted, can appear to daydream

  • Reading challenges

  • Problems with spatial awareness, rhythm and sequencing can have wide impacts upon team sports

  • Swimming may be the sport of choice

Dyspraxia is a term often used in the UK but the more widely used term is Developmental Coordination Disorder.

Developmental Coordination Disorder includes these diagnostic features: -


• Motor skills are substantially below expected levels, given the person’s chronological age and previous opportunities for skill acquisition.


• The motor skill deficit is significant and interferes with activities in daily life, impacting school, leisure and play activities.

•The deficit cannot be explained by intellectual disability or visual impairment and is not linked to a neurological condition affecting movement such as Cerebral Palsy

Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders (DSM-5; APA 2013)

“Too often the ‘primary’ presenting difficulty is identified and supported while the underlying causes remain untreated”

Madeleine Portwood – Understanding Developmental Dyspraxia


The challenge when faced with a diagnosis of dyspraxia or in fact any other label, is that we focus upon the matter in hand. This may be that your child has poor handwriting, is unable to copy from the board or has poor listening skills. Offering support, adjustments and coping strategies will be very important but this should not be at the expense of also helping them to develop more fundamental skills that underpin the diagnosis. These can include sensory and auditory processing problems and other areas of developmental delay.

There has been a wide range of research to understand many of the challenges associated with Dyspraxia. These include:


• Predicting how to perform a movement

• Challenges with timing and rhythm

• Executive function

• Dynamic control of posture and gait

• Visual spatial problems and other cross sensory issues

• Kinaesthetic perception – grip, force, pressure

• Deficits in motor control, learning and cognition

• Vestibular function, proprioception and spatial awareness

At Learning Solutions, we work with the underpinning sensory processing challenges and areas of developmental delay that can really help your child to progress.

Book your FREE consultation

Need advice? We are happy to offer a no obligation free 15 minute chat to discuss your particular circumstances and see if our programmes may be helpful.


One step at a time

Begin the journey today to improved sensory regulation, rhythm and body awareness

Take a free 7 day trial of The Listening Program online

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