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How to Help a Child with Learning Difficulties

How to Help a Child with Learning Difficulties

Learning disabilities or difficulties are behaviors that prevent a child from taking in and processing information. It stands for a wide range of conditions that a child may have inherited from a parent or relative, but that may not always be the case. Sometimes the cause is unknown or related to childhood illness or injury, premature birth, or low birth weight.

Whatever the cause may be, parents or guardians need to know ways to address this issue correctly and help a child overcome them together with teachers. Here are some guidelines on how to help a child with learning difficulties and provide adequate support.

Identify the symptoms

Various symptoms can point to learning disabilities so if you notice your child struggling with grades, attention, or materials, look for the following signs:

  • The trouble with processing language
  • Problems with visual tasks
  • Inability to correctly process auditory information
  • Problems with nonverbal skills (for example, dressing), etc.

It doesn’t matter if up until that point your child didn’t express any difficulties, since these may be more pronounced as their education gets harder. For instance, a child may have had no issues before school, but once they started their education, you noticed one or more of these symptoms. If you are unsure whether you are wrong or right, talk to the teachers and school psychologist to find the best course of action to help a child.

Explain learning difficulty to a child

When a child is experiencing learning difficulties they can feel scared, anxious, less valued, and inferior to other children in their class. The best approach is to sit down with your child and explain to them their condition in a supportive and understanding way. Building a sincere relationship with a child and being proactive can help them build confidence and resolve.

For example, you can start by explaining that not everyone learns things the same way and at the same pace. By doing this, your child will pay more attention to how to overcome difficulties instead of what others think of it.  

How to Help a Child with Learning Difficulties

Work with professionals

The best approach is always to involve professionals early since they have years of experience to help children with learning difficulties. An expert team includes pediatricians and child psychologists, like Sydney Child Development Specialists, working in different areas, such as autism spectrum disorders, or ADHD.

The whole process starts with comprehensive assessments that will help professionals to diagnose learning difficulties and their causes. After the diagnosis, the team consults with parents or guardians on the best approach for care and management of the condition.

Place focus on effort and not results

It’s always about the effort and not results when it comes to children with learning difficulties. Both parents and educators need to explain this to them to relieve the pressure and stress that come with this condition. When a child is focused on results, they may lose motivation, determination, and will to work on overcoming their learning difficulty.

Instead, work with your child on one skill or knowledge, and once they master it, proceed to the next. Thus breaking down a task into smaller parts will bring success and show your child that they can learn it successfully if they do it at their own pace.

Encourage curiosity

Children are curious by nature. They will come to you or their teachers for answers, but if they receive a negative response, it may be interpreted as a need to repress that curiosity. When it comes to children with learning difficulties, this can lead to the disruption of activities that are vital to come up with solutions for problems.

Instead of brushing off their curiosity, come up with a way to address it that will be beneficial and encouraging. For example, get them materials that can answer their questions. This can include books, toys, and even teaching them a new skill. A child values great support and help from a parent to an extent that it can be a boost to continue overcoming their learning difficulty.

Introduce them to role models

A role model is a real or fictional person that your child can look up to as a good example to overcome learning difficulties. Often, children idolize celebrities and the characters they portray, but these can also be prominent individuals from history, science, and other fields. The key is to find a person they admire and know about to feel a connection with and see as a role model.

For example, Daniel Redcliff who played Harry Potter was diagnosed with dyspraxia, a condition that affects movement and coordination. His co-star Emma Watson who portrayed the best student at Hogwarts, Hermione Granger, was diagnosed with ADHD and couldn’t stay focused in class. Mark Ruffalo who played Hulk in several Marvel franchises suffered from dyslexia, a condition that Albert Einstein also had.    

In conclusion

Parents, guardians, and educators need to find a proper approach and strategy on how to help a child with learning difficulties. Together with experts specialized to diagnose and treat this disability, they can find the best way to create nurturing and positive environment for the child. It may take time and patience, but in the end, all the efforts can pay off and allow a child to obtain the knowledge they crave for.

ninaNina is a blogger, yoga aficionado and a travel enthusiast with a distinctive taste for home decor. She's passionate about learning new things and sharing meaningful ideas. If you wanna see what she's up to you can find her on twitter!

This article was submitted exclusively to CrystalWind.ca by Nina Simons © 2020 crystalwind.ca
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