Your child needs academic and learning skills for success in life. However, some children have difficulty in reading, calculating, writing, or other learning-related tasks.
If the problem persists over time, it signifies that your child has a specific learning disability. It is a neurological condition impairing the ability to carry out tasks that are simple for other people. The tasks may be writing, speaking, reading, calculating, or listening.
However, it doesn’t construe that your child has a below-average intelligence level. Specific learning disabilities can be found in children with above-average intelligence as well.
If your child has similar difficulties, you can help them with special teaching techniques and time management.
Here are some ways to deal with learning disorders in children.
- Start Early
The signs of learning disabilities in children start at an early age. These kids need a few years to change from complete dependence to relative independence while coping with their daily lives.
During this time, you don’t need formal instructions to encourage your child to notice things around them, labelling objects, or developing appropriate social behaviours.
You can start by teaching self-help skills like dressing, tying shoelaces, and buttoning. Also, help your child learn how to throw a ball, recite the alphabets, or count the numbers.
Even with adequate stimulation, your child may struggle to learn these simple skills. Hence, you have to maintain consistency in your approach and encourage your child to participate in these activities.
- Inculcate Academic Curiosity
Children with learning disorders find it challenging to do things that they don’t want to do. It impedes their ability to learn and feel motivated to develop academic skills. Parents need to provide positive reinforcements to foster their intellectual curiosity.
If your child is an inactive learner, you can develop the spirit of inquiry by showing excitement at the simplest events. You may do this by paying attention to every small activity or task done by your child.
Go for a walk with them in the garden while studying flowers, trees, grass, gravel, or sidewalks.
Talk about the terms like rough, hard, smooth, beautiful, crawling, etc., to describe these things. The idea is to motivate your child to become a learner in a soothing and stimulating environment.
- Know What Works Best for Your Child
Learning disability or not, every child has unique ways of learning things. Some children are good at reading, while some prefer listening to learn new concepts.
You need to identify what works for your child to adopt the right teaching approach. Find if your child is an auditory, visual, or kinaesthetic learner.
Your Child is Auditory Learner If:
- Learns better by listening
- Performs well in lecture-based classes
- Takes an interest in oral tests and reports
- Participates and benefits from study groups and classroom discussion
- Loves music, languages, and speaking activities
Your Child is a Visual Learner If:
- Learns best by reading or seeing
- Prefers visually presented and tested materials
- Benefits from diagrams, maps, charts, and written notes
- Loves to read, write, or draw
Your Child is a Kinaesthetic Learner If:
- Learns by doing things
- Prefers to touch, move, explore, and create new things
- Benefits from lab classes, field trips, hands-on activities, and props
- Loves dancing, drama, sports, arts, crafts, and martial arts
Depending on your child’s learning abilities, you can plan the best ways to manage any disorders. For example, use visual aids, colour-coded notes, illustrations, and drawings for visual learners.
Similarly, you can use audiobooks, read notes, use verbal repetition, or tape recorders to listen to auditory learners’ lectures.
For kinaesthetic learners, use experiments, model building, group exercises, memory games, and role-playing.
- Use Appropriate Stimulation to Guide Language Comprehension
Since learning disorders in children impede their language comprehension, parents tend to reduce communications. While reducing language may be good to some extent, you need proper stimulation to develop your child’s language abilities.
For example, when eating, engage them in a conversation about the type of food, like is the apple ripe, is it red, how to peel the apple, etc.
After every small question, please wait for the child to respond, as it develops their interpersonal skills and verbal learning. While teaching the language, try to use a visual reference with words to stimulate learning.
However, you can’t use any referent for abstract terms but explain these words in a sentence using simple examples.
Most importantly, do not restrict your child’s abilities and achievements in terms of academic success alone. They should learn to cope in life with a healthy conscience, ability to ask for help, and resilience to succeed despite their challenges.
You can find help with the experts having specialised treatment programs catering to your child’s specific needs.