Friday, October 7, 2011

Writing Difficulties and ADHD

A recent study by researchers at the Mayo Clinic, published in the journal Pediatrics, looks at whether children with Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder, ADHD, (which is one form of the several attention components we look at here at The Yellin Center) have significant difficulties with written language. Written Language Disorder -- WLD -- is different from the more common language disorders which impact reading. WLD affects how students express themselves in writing and involves such skills as organization and planning, integration of visual and motor activities, finger coordination, and active working memory. The researchers wanted to see how the skills associated with effective written language were impacted in students with ADHD.

The study looked at almost 6,000 students in Minnesota from birth until age 19. The findings were striking. "Among boys, those with ADHD had a nearly 65 percent risk for having writing difficulties, compared to 16.5 percent among those without ADHD. Among girls, the figures were 57 percent vs. 9.4 percent." In addition, for girls with ADHD (but not for boys), there was an increased likelihood that their writing difficulties were accompanied by reading difficulties. Parents and teachers need to be mindful of the interplay of areas of difficulty for students.

Photo used under Creative Commons by Indi Samarajiva

1 comment:

  1. Having a family member with ADHD requires greater responsibility. You need to include positive reinforcement method to every aspect of learning. This is an unfortunate event especially if it is accompanied with WLD.