Learning disabilities

Learning disabilities

About 10% of children in school have difficulties in learning academic skills such as reading, writing, spelling, or arithmetic, although they have a near-normal intelligence, which is often an effect, rather than the cause of a learning disability.

Etiology of scholastic underachievement
Pertaining to the child 
  • The child sufferings from the school, generally do not perform well in school
  • Too frequent change of residence
  • The undetected error of refraction or mild deafness
  • At times, the child is too immature and is yet not ready for given instructions. Learning disability is commonly employed for neuropsychological handicaps for learning. A child may not be able to comprehend the visual or auditory stimuli in the classroom so that the sensory inputs may not be adequately organized in the brain and may not be able to coordinate his motor or behavior activity according to the stimuli

Pertaining t school
  • A cultural disharmony of the child with his peers in the school may lead to maladjustment and may interfere with his scholastic performance
  • Some exceptionally intelligent children have been dubbed poor learners by incompetent teachers who made learning a boring and unpleasant experience

Early prediction of learning disabilities
Preterm or low birth weight infants with or without h/o birth anoxia or injury are more vulnerable to learning disabilities

Symptoms / signs
  • Lack of neurosensory and motor coordination
  • Such children have difficulty in discrimination between right and left
  • They confuse letters of the alphabet. which appear mirror image of each such as b and d, p and q
  • Inadequate in those play activities which require coordination of sensory and motor pathways such as catching a ball
  • Sequential organization and short term memory
  • Delay in language development
  • Disorder of fine motor adaptive development, they are unable to draw figures or write coherently
  • Lak of attention, impulsive and hyperkinetic
  • Abstract thinking capacity of these children is impaired

  • Hearing or visual defects should be excluded by audiometry and refraction
  • Complete neurological examination
  • His learning requirements and expected scholastic achievement are established, the strength and weaknesses are identified. The environment is so modulated so as to make it least distracting in order to increase his span of attention
  • The teacher is counseled about the child's problem of hyperkinetic behavior. His curriculum should be individualized so that he can learn in his own space. Such children perform better in schools with small classes. In case, the child can not cope with the stress or pace of a regular school, placement in a special school may be considered
  • The parents should be counseled and reassured. They should provide emotional support to the child for even the smallest achievement and give him due recognition and appreciation.

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