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“Harry Potter” Star Gives Dyspraxia Advice

By Geri Coleman Tucker on

Harry Potter is a hero to a generation of kids and their parents who are fans of the books. But actor Daniel Radcliffe, who plays the clever wizard in the Harry Potter movies, has also become a hero, of sorts. He’s speaking out for kids with dyspraxia, a condition that makes it hard to plan and coordinate physical movement.

Radcliffe, who has a mild form of dyspraxia, knows the challenges it can bring. As a child, he had trouble with handwriting and tying his shoelaces. His early school years were very difficult because he was awful at “everything, with no discernible talent.”

In a recent Facebook chat with The Wall Street Journal’s Speakeasy blog, Radcliffe offered encouragement to a 10-year-old girl with .

“Do not let it stop you,” he said. “It has never held me back, and some of the smartest people I know are people who have learning disabilities. The fact that some things are more of a struggle will only make you more determined, harder working and more imaginative in the solutions you find to problems.”

Dyspraxia is not as well known as other learning and thinking differences, such as and . But it’s quite common and often co-occurs with those issues. Between 6 and 10 percent of all children show signs of dyspraxia. Boys are more likely to have it than are girls.

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