Not all children learn and develop in the same way. While some develop quickly, others need a little more time. This applies to all aspects of a child’s life, including reading and writing.
Many children find reading challenging, but when the struggle to learn to read becomes severe, the child may have a form of a learning disorder called dyslexia.
Many parents and teachers have felt discouraged over the perceived inability of their children to read, write, or spell. They can feel inept and sometimes frustrated that the child is falling behind their peers when it comes to learning, yet the child may have dyslexia.
Reading about how dyslexia affects learning can help teachers, parents, speech therapists, and anyone who works or spends time with children better understand the condition. With adequate information and training, the child can be encouraged to be the best they can be, and often dyslexia improves as the child grows. Be sure to contact Language & Learning if you need any assistance understanding what dyslexia means for your child.
In this post, we will look at dyslexia and how it affects learning and its impacts on the child.
Dyslexia is one of the most common learning disorders. It can make it difficult for a child to read, write, and spell. It impacts the ability of a child to read at a normal pace and causes the brain to have trouble processing letters and sounds.
Some forms of dyslexia are more severe than others, occurring on a continuum. Dyslexia does not affect every child in the same way: no two cases are the same. There are similarities, however.
The signs of dyslexia will usually show before a child starts school, although they are often missed. Besides the above, dyslexia leaves a mark that generally goes beyond reading and writing; it can affect a child’s confidence, motivation, and self-image.
Below, we will discuss the various impacts of dyslexia on a child’s learning in more detail.
Dyslexia has various impacts on a child’s learning. These impacts include, but are not limited to:
Children with dyslexia may have different combinations of learning challenges. For example, one student may find reading difficult while another may find writing more difficult. Another may have both reading and writing challenges.
Children with dyslexia typically have difficulties sounding out new words and fluently recognising old ones.
All these are not a matter of the child’s effort or intelligence, but they are related to neurological problems in the brain.
Many children with dyslexia have speech delays and may start to speak later than other children their age. In addition, dyslexia is often identified in students who had difficulties with speech sound accuracy when learning a task or a diagnosis of childhood apraxia of speech.
Difficulty with comprehension of written text is seen when students struggle to decode or read the words of a text. Typically, students with dyslexia have good spoken language skills; however, language difficulties (or developmental language disorders) can co-exist with dyslexia. These disorders appear as difficulties with comprehension in both spoken comprehension and reading comprehension.
In school, children with dyslexia are more likely to become anxious than their peers because of their learning difficulties.
Many will find it hard to take notes and copy down words from the board. Because of their reading struggles, there may be increased anxiety when called on to read aloud in class. This may lead to frustration with school and learning as a whole and is why understanding dyslexia and the individual needs of students is so vital for teachers, parents, and students alike.
Children diagnosed with dyslexia may struggle to learn like their peers, but if they are left undiagnosed and do not have the help they need, the struggle may lead them to become frustrated. This in turn can affect their emotional well-being.
They may suffer from low self-esteem, anxiety, and depression. Fear of making mistakes may affect their ability to interact with their peers. They may struggle with thoughts of rejection. Identifying their dyslexia early can significantly reduce any negative consequences. They deserve fair and compassionate treatment along with tailored support to equip them to reach their potential.
Dyslexia can also impact a child socially. For example, experiencing academic failure despite sustained effort can impact friendships and self-confidence Many kids with dyslexia suffer from low self-esteem because they think that something is wrong with them.
Some dyslexic children will think they are not trying hard enough and push themselves too far, causing them to stop believing in their abilities. They need reassurance that they are intelligent and capable – and they are! There is absolutely no indication that dyslexia affects intelligence whatsoever.
The impacts of dyslexia on children vary. It depends on several factors, including the severity and the kind of help the child receives. However, with the proper support and encouragement, dyslexic kids can learn to read, write, and excel in school and society just like their peers.
However, without adequate help and support, they may struggle more than they need to. This is why parents and teachers need all the training they can get to support children with dyslexia, and at Language & Learning, we have all the resources to help.
At Language & Learning, we know that the earlier a dyslexic child gets support, the better. This is why we have put together various training courses for parents, teachers, and speech therapists that are structured to meet the specific needs of children with learning difficulties of all kinds.
We have years of experience working with students with difficulties within the education setting. We aim to help children with learning difficulties succeed and know that there is nothing they cannot achieve.
It is never too late to start. Contact Language & Learning today.
A learning disability is a condition that makes learning or assimilation of knowledge challenging. Students with these disabilities do not take in and process information like the rest of their peers.
Here is a list of the more common learning disabilities:
Students with learning difficulties can also experience problems with executive functioning. This means they may struggle with planning, organisation and memory.
Teachers must know how to help students with learning disabilities. Doing this will put the children in a position to compete and hold their own in the classroom. It will also build their confidence, allowing them to become the best person they can be and aid them in succeeding in life.
What if one of your students has a learning disability? As a teacher, how can you help such a child? Read on to learn more.
As a teacher, you need to begin by understanding that a child with a learning disability has just as much potential to succeed in school – and life in general – as any of their peers. With adequate support and help from family and teachers, students with these disabilities can be confident and achieve in society; all they need is understanding and patience from those around them. With this, they can then blossom into the amazing human beings they are destined to be.
Here are five tips that teachers can apply when assisting students with learning disabilities:
To help a child with learning disabilities, the teacher must focus on the child. There must be specific attention to the child’s individual achievement, individual progress, and individual learning. This requires explicit, direct, and individualised instruction for students with a learning disability. It is also essential that the teacher give the student a way to share their progress with you or ask for help without standing out as different from their peers.
When teachers break the learning process into simple steps, a child with a learning disability will be able to follow along far more readily. One way to do this is to use a variety of learning resources, such as diagrams, graphics and pictures. The more stimulating the material provided, the better.
Modelling the assignment or project that your students are to undertake is an excellent way to help those with a learning disability. By watching and copying your actions, they will learn more efficiently. Colour coding the steps in a task can also help enormously. This is the process of making your thinking visible, also known as ‘metacognition’. Colour coding also allows students to work on a task at their own pace and minimises the risk of overwhelming them.
One of the most critical aspects of teaching a child with a learning disability is simply being supportive and patient. Many of these children struggle and are very aware of their differences from their peers as they are very observant. They pick up on minute changes in an adult’s demeanour and will know if you are getting frustrated. Unfortunately, they might often internalise this frustration and become disheartened or disinterested, exacerbating the issue. Being patient and supportive is vital when teaching children with learning difficulties, and it cannot be underestimated or overlooked.
Even though the child spends a great deal of time at school, some of the child’s progress can be lost if a learning environment is not reinforced at home. Therefore, as a teacher, you should try to partner with parents to support your students’ progress and ensure they remain encouraged.
One good way of doing this is to supply regular, quality feedback to parents. For example, engage them in parent-teacher sessions and discuss the strategies you have applied to help the student learn better. On top of this, they can give your input on the processes that have worked best for their child.
There is no cure for a learning disability. It is a lifelong challenge. However, students with these challenges are typically hard-working, just like their peers. Their difficulties do not indicate a lack of intelligence but rather specific difficulties with the tasks of reading, writing, spelling or mathematics. Utilising a range of technologies can also enhance student learning and independence. Many tools can be very easily incorporated into the classroom through the use of tablets, laptops and headphones.
As a teacher, you can take training courses and coaching sessions that will equip you to support all your students and help them to be the best that they can be. You can start by getting professional support or training from Language and Learning.
Language and Learning provides online professional development courses with a focus on language, learning and literacy for teachers, school leaders and speech therapists working with special needs students across all schooling levels in Australia. We provide training courses and coaching designed to equip teachers and school leaders to support their special needs students to be the best they can be.
Ready to get started? Contact us today.
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