IS MY CHILD STRUGGLING IN SCHOOL? SIGNS TO SPOT LEARNING DISABILITIES
Learning disabilities are like that hidden birthmark, only parents can see it from a very early stage. These parents are a mirror for children. They tend to believe how their parents perceived them during childhood.
Loving, compassionate, and motivating parents can pave successful pathways for children as they grow older, without them knowing.
When it’s established that the impact of parenting is so strong on children, it’s on the parents to understand how to deal with their child’s strengths and weaknesses.
They need to identify both from an early age – to help the child succeed with his/her talents and strengthen weak areas accordingly.
By determining their learning style & understanding which skill-sets they possess, parents have fair grounds to refrain from stressful or unreal expectations.
If a child starts showing symptoms of speech delay, instead of pushing them out of their limits that would cause low self-esteem – these parents can take steps to determine the underlying problem and how it can be treated.
This process of pin-pointing will help them support their child emotionally and advocate for them.
Sometimes not knowing or overlooking learning difficulties or worse, failing to accept them, will eventually lead to the child labeling themselves negatively and stopping believing in themselves.
Allow them to learn at their own pace. The stress of being bored or not being able to concentrate or pronounce the words or identify sounds – will actually slow their progress down by taking the fun out of their participation and reducing their motivation to learn.
Consistent exposure to situations in which your children feel that their ability is surpassed by the activity’s demands will eventually make them feel incompetent. If these experiences are frequent, this sense of incompetence may result in lowered self-esteem which they end up applying to all areas of their lives.
Here we aim to share a few pointers on how to identify a learning disability that will help you look for the most appropriate solution.
Early signs to look out for:
- Delayed speech or language development.
- Issues in basic motor skills – notice how they might be holding their pencil, are they able to use a pair of scissors without difficulty?
- Following basic instructions.
- Not able to grasp basic vocabulary.
- Strain in identifying sounds and the direction it is coming from.
- Struggling in identifying numbers, telling time, or counting.
- Cannot understand body language or expressions.
- Difficulty in focusing or paying attention for long.
- Struggling significantly in basic math
- Less participation in the group.
- Poor memory / Poor grasping power
- Not able to handle pen or crayon
- Dreading going to school.
- Unexpected mood shifts and/or fatigue.
- Problems in dressing up – tying shoelaces, wearing the correct shoe in the correct leg, wearing a tie properly.
- Low self-esteem / Negative self talk
- Family history of any kind of disability.
- Is his brain development normal?
- Exceptionally bright children may tend to have a hidden disability often easily discarded by parents due to their dominant strengths.
These are a few symptoms you can try spotting in your child if you fear they might be suffering from some kind of difficulty in learning.
Ever wondered – what causes these disabilities?
1) Childhood trauma.
2) Malfunctioning brain.
3) Improper diet or severe deficits in nutrition.
5) Exposure to drugs during pregnancy.
6) Premature birth.
7) Very low birth weight.
8) Or exposure to lead in infancy.
These are a few – not all – factors that might lead to a brain wired in a way that causes a learning disability. If a lot of factors are present, you should consider getting your child diagnosed.
How should a parent cope up with the stress of having a child with a learning disability?
Secondly, believe in the magic of appreciation and praise. Remember that encouragement and praise can go a long way toward motivating your child to do homework, complete assignments, and study for tests.
Children with learning difficulties need your support – big time! Make criticism constructive. Instead “You aren’t going to hand in that mess, are you?” Try saying, “The teacher will understand your ideas better with your best handwriting.” Then give praise when a neater version is completed.
Firstly, they should know that these disabilities are not a label or a permanent tag on their children. These difficulties can also be a sign of an underlying problem that needs to be addressed. Sometimes healing a child who has faced childhood trauma can also lead to the solution to these difficulties.
Know the difference between over-challenging and going below the challenged capacity of your child. Find out just what he finds boring & what excites him and give him the correct amount of push he needs.
Sometimes when your expectation surpasses the child’s current ability, it can turn into a sense of failure. Remember – just the right amount of challenge is the best strategy.
Also, know that there are a lot of support programs out there – where all kinds of parents get together and share how they cope up with the stress of seeing their child struggle.
These support groups make you understand that you’re not alone, and the feelings you go through are completely understandable.
Lastly, here are a few things your child might love hearing and needs to know from a very early age. Tell yourself and your child that he/she is:
- Perfect & loved regardless.
- has a lot of options and chances in life.
- Unique in his own way
- Basically, needs to grow up with self-worth and self-love.
Early intervention in these children is very helpful – if the gap between their actual and expected performance increases, their educational & social journey becomes broken.
Also, read – https://bioneerslive.org/2021/11/the-significance-of-grammar-in-the-english-language-why-is-learning-grammar-important-for-kids.html