How To Spot A Learning Disability

Taken from njfamily.com

By Dr. Kenneth Shore

boy sitting at his desk studyingThe most frequent problem for which children receive special education is a learning disability. More common among boys, learning disabilities are found in approximately 10 percent of children nationwide. A learning disability is characterized by difficulties in acquiring information and typically gives rise to academic deficiencies.

While all learning-disabled children rarely have the same profile of strengths and weaknesses, they do share two characteristics: they’re not lazy and they’re not slow. In fact, they’re often puzzles to their teachers and parents—and almost always themselves—because they typically do some things well and others poorly. Many grow frustrated and discouraged by their failure to keep pace with their classmates and may respond in class by misbehaving, withdrawing, or becoming the class clown.

Watch for these signs
The following is a partial list of behaviors that may suggest a child has a learning disability:

  • has difficulty concentrating for even brief periods, and is easily distracted
  • often fails to understand oral or written information (for example, teacher directions)
  • has poor retention of learned material such as math facts, spelling words, days of the week, telling time
  • has significant difficulty sounding out words
  • after age 8, reverses letters or numbers when reading or writing
  • has a hard time organizing himself and his materials
  • is very slow in completing class assignments and has difficulty putting ideas on paper
  • is easily frustrated and gives up quickly
  • has spatial orientation difficulties (for example, is confused getting around in school)
  • misperceives social situations or reactions of other people

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1 Comment

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One response to “How To Spot A Learning Disability

  1. You bring up some good points. My mom noticed how I wasn’t reading correctly and that I regularly forgot new information and got me tested in elementary school. Since my diagnosis with a reading and learning disorder I received the help I needed to be successful in middle school/high school/undergrad and grad school. Early intervention is best!

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