Rewards
Demystifying Learning Disability

The case of Aakash shows the perplexity of Learning Disabilities and the difficulties parents

face. Aakash's parents have long been aware that their son has severe learning problems. As an

infant, Aakash had difficulty in learning to suck. His early speech was not clear and frequently

his inability to communicate led to sudden temper tantrums. The kindergarten teacher told that

Aakash was "very slow in learning"; his first-grade teacher said he "doesn't show interest in

reading and writing"; and succeeding teacher labeled him ‘lazy' and then ‘emotionally disturbed'.

Aakash's anxious parents attempted to find the source of his learning problems to help him and

themselves in a hope to come out of this distressing situation.

They desperately followed suggestions from many therapists and professionals who intended to

treat such difficulties.

One therapist diagnosed Aakash's problem as a lack of neurological organization and instructed a

lengthy series of motor exercises. Another therapist detected a visual problem and suggested

visual training exercises which he received for several years. They also consulted a

psychotherapist for counseling for themselves and Aakash. One teacher identified the problem as

a lack of instructions in phonics and Aakash was sent for intensive training in phonics. The

family doctor suggested that Aakash is going through a phase and he would grow out of it. In

spite of so many efforts, Aakash was not showing any improvement. He was still finding

difficult to learn and was lagging behind his classmates. By now Aakash was 9 years old, he was

failing in school and he has lost confidence in himself.

The problems faced by Aakash and his parents are typical. Each specialist viewed Aakash's

problem from its perspective and failed to complete the missing pieces to make a complete

picture. They failed to understand the child as a whole. What is required instead is an

interdisciplinary approach to the problem of learning disabilities- a joint effort from all the

professionals and co-ordination to understand the root cause of the difficulty.

The intervention of learning disability requires uniformity in instruction. Correct diagnosis and

the right strategies to deal with Learning Disability is the key to overcome the problem. Parents

and teachers should ensure that the strategies followed at home and school should be consistent

and monitored. Remedial Intervention should be planned as per the child's learning profile. Take

the practical step and avoid confusion which may distract the child in getting beneficial help. The

intervention should be evidence-based. Maintain the transparency in communication between

school and home. "It takes a village to raise a child".

Effective communication between parent and school will give a positive outcome.

Take Action. Support Inclusion. Like and Share the article if you find it helpful. Please feel free

to drop in your queries and follow #specialneeds #bbcreatorsclub


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