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This Blog is solely private property of Hanz & TheHoneybunch.All the contents are based on the life we lead and sharing from what I learnt & read. We love homeschool and are happily homeschooling our boys aged 7, 3 and a baby for the past 7 years.

We welcome you to share as we would never stop learning because we believe the world is our classroom. Thank you.

Saturday, March 19, 2011

Learning Disability in Children | Symptoms & Types

Why it is so hard for my son to finish his homework?"

"My daughter can read but at times, she has difficulty pronouncing certain words."

"If she would just pay attention, she would get it."

"Your son disturbs his friends while lesson is on and
seems hard to concentrate in class."

"After I give the instructions, my daughter just stand there and I have to repeat the instructions again. Funny thing is she is not even has any hearing problem."

"When will our son can talk in sentences? He is far delayed compared with
his cousins of same age."

Perhaps you have encounter, seen or heard any of the above situation. I, myself have been dealing with these children apart from having one of my own when I had a full-time teaching job last time. To some who is non-familiar with the term learning disability children will somehow labelled these children as naughty, difficult, problematic and worst, stupid. Stop right there! The truth is these children could be having learning disability and early intervention and support can really make a difference in giving these children the best chance for success.

A child with learning disability cannot try harder, pay closer attention, or improve motivation on their own. They need help to learn how to do those things.

A learning disability is not a problem with intelligence. It is caused by a difference in the brain that affects how information is received, processed or communicated. Children and even adults with learning disabilities have trouble processing sensory information because they see, hear, and understand things differently.

Learning disbilities is also categorised as special need children. Paying attention to normal developmental milestones for toddlers and preschoolers is very important. You know your child better than anyone else does so if you think there is a problem, it does'nt hurt to get an evaluation.

Types of learning disabilities are often grouped by skill set or cognitive weakness. Basically they are :

1) Gross and fine motor difficulties
Example : Grasps pencil awkwardly, resulting in poor handwriting, dislikes and avoid writing and drawing tasks, appears awkward and clumsy, dropping, spilling or knocking things over.

2) Language difficulties
Example : Demonstrates early delays in learning to speak, has difficulty modulating voice (too soft, too loud), has difficulty re-telling what has just been said, mispronounces words frequently, has difficulty with pragmatic skills (ie. understands the relationship between speaker and listener, stays on topic)

3) Math difficulties
Example : Has difficulty with simple counting, has trouble telling time, has difficulty estimating

4) Reading difficulties
Example : Confuses similar looking letters and numbers, demonstrates poor memory for printed words, frequently loses place while reading, reads very slowly, has poor retention of new vocabulary

5) Writing difficulties
Example : Dislikes and avoids writing and copying, writing is messy and incomplete, spells poorly and inconsistently, frequently reverse letters, numbers and symbols.

6) Social or Emotional difficulties
Example : Does not pick up on other people's mood/feelings. may not detect or respond appropriately to teasing, has trouble knowing how to share and express feelings, has difficulty dealing with group pressure, is doubtful of own abilities

7) Attention difficulties (auditory and/or visual processing)
Example : Fails to pay close attention to details, has difficulty organizing tasks and activities, is easily distracted by outside influences, does not follow through on instructions, has difficulty listening and taking notes at the same time.

Those that I have listed are only a few symptoms. You can obtain thorough and completed checklist of symptom from professionals especially when you send your child for assessment. From there onwards, the child will be diagnosed on which learning disabilities. Or, I suggest you make your own research via the internet of course.

The common ones of learning disabilities are :
1) Dyslexia - Difficulty processing language. Problems in reading, writing, spelling, speaking.

2) Dyscalculla - Difficulty with maths.

3) Dysgraphia - Difficulty with writing. Problems with handwriting, spelling and organizing ideas.

4) Dyspraxia - Difficulty with fine motor skills. Problems with hand-eye coordinaion, balance, manual dexterity.

Though social and emotional difficulties may not necessarily grouped under learning disability, it can still disrupt learning process. They are :

1) ADHD (Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder) - Have problems with sitting still, staying focused, following instructions, staying organized and completing homework.

2) Autism - May have trouble making friends, reading body language. communicating and making eye contact.

The process of diagnosis a learning disability can be confusing. I shall cover this topic in my next chat.

NEXT : Learning disability in children : Diagnosis, testing & parenting learning disability children

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