Dysgraphia is a specific learning disability affecting a person’s writing abilities, including poor spelling skills and handwriting, inconsistent spacing, and trouble with simultaneous thinking and writing. Dysgraphia can manifest itself in several ways, including pencil grip issues that make letter formation an exceedingly tough task. If your child is having difficulty producing written work up to classroom standards, don’t dismiss it as laziness—children with dysgraphia can exhibit signs and symptoms that are mistakenly identified as signs they’re not putting forth enough effort.


What are examples of Dysgraphia symptoms?

There are six unique categories of dysgraphia symptoms: visual-spatial, fine motor, language processing, spelling/handwriting, grammar, and organization of language.


  • Difficulty with letter spacing
  • Struggles with organizing words across the page
  • Copies texts slowly
  • Difficulty writing on a line and inside margins
  • Letters go in different directions, colliding with other words and letters

Fine Motor Skills

  • Issues with pen/pencil grip, cutting food, doing puzzles, typing, texting
  • Improperly uses scissors
  • Struggles with coloring inside lines
  • Awkward wrist, arm, and body contortion while writing

Language Processing Issues

  • Struggles with comprehending directions (game rules, assignment instructions, etc.)
  • Difficulty getting ideas down on paper in a timely fashion
  • Frequently loses train of thought

Spelling and Handwriting

  • Struggles with understanding spelling rules and putting them into writing
  • Confuses upper and lowercase letters
  • Burns out quickly from writing
  • Spells words incorrectly in several different ways
  • Struggles with reading their own writing


  • Struggles with using punctuation
  • Writes frequent run-on sentences
  • Overuses commas and confuses verb tenses


  • Struggles with telling a chronological story
  • Assumes peers have context for stories they’re unaware of
  • Vaguely describes things
  • Makes repetitive points
  • Leaves out crucial facts and details

Dysgraphia signs can vary significantly based on the child’s age; signs generally appear when a child is first learning to write, so be on the lookout for something that would otherwise be commonly diagnosed as a lack of attention or effort.


How is my child affected by Dysgraphia?

Although the impact of dysgraphia on your child may vary depending on the severity of the symptoms, children with dysgraphia may be affected academically and socially. Symptoms can manifest themselves in difficult ways if left untreated.


How can St. Louis LDA help?

At St. Louis Learning Disabilities Association, our team of certified experts provide your child with the specific support they require to get back up to speed and excel academically, socially, and emotionally. We schedule in-depth interviews with parents or guardians to identify what symptoms they’re exhibiting, before thoroughly testing your child for an accurate diagnosis. From there, we devise a unique learning plan designed to yield the best results for their academic performance and social development. We understand that you most likely have several questions regarding your child’s learning disability—at St. Louis LDA, it’s our job to provide clarity and high-quality support.