How To Help Children With Learning Disability

by Frederick Akinola
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A mother helping her child study

There is a difference between simple learning problems and learning disabilities. Learning problems can be overcome with patience and effort. In contrast, learning disabilities are said to be more deep-rooted. The learning-disabled child’s brain seems to perceive, process, or remember certain kinds of mental tasks in a faulty manner. But a learning disability does not necessarily mean that a child is mentally disabled. It is said that a child with a learning disability is functioning two or more years below the expected level for his age and his assessed IQ.  A child with a learning disability performs lower that his peers.  How can you help such a child?

Do Not Allow Them to Develop a Negative Self-image

Sadly, many such children develop a negative self-image that can persist as they grow. This is a valid concern since learning disabilities generally do not go away. It is essential, therefore, that children with learning disabilities receive parental support. Children who know that their parents are strong advocates for them have a basis for developing a sense of competency and self-esteem. The parents should try not to feel guilty and blame themselves for their child’s condition.  When a skilled specialist determines that your child has a learning disability, do not despair. Remember that children with learning disabilities just need extra support in a specific learning skill. Take the time to become familiar with any programs that may be available in your area for children who are learning disabled. Many schools are better equipped to deal with such situations than they were years ago.

Praise Them For Their Accomplishments

Experts emphasize that you should praise your child for any accomplishments, no matter how small. Be generous with commendation. At the same time, do not neglect discipline. Children need structure, and this is all the more true of those who are learning disabled. Let your child know what you expect, and hold to the standards you set.

Be Realistic

Finally, learn to view your situation realistically. Many parents need to make a mental shift in their thinking. Please do not jump to conclusions if your child is not doing well. In some cases, children manifest a temporary learning curve because their development in some areas is delayed. In time, such children outgrow the symptoms.

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