Having a learning disability can be a frustrating struggle for your child. Many people might not know that learning disabilities are actually pretty common. Just like there are a variety of different learning styles, you and your child can find a way to learn that works best for them. But even when they have difficulties, here are three things you can do to help them through.
Acknowledge the Effort
It’s important to realize that oftentimes learning is more about the journey than the destination. You or your child might become frustrated when you are not seeing the results, such as a certain grade. But if your child is truly putting in the work and the effort to improve, then you should praise their commitment. Let your child know how proud you are for them keeping at it. By acknowledging that you see their hard work, it will encourage them not to give up even if they haven’t seen the results yet.
One of the worst things any parent can do for a child with a learning disability is compare their performance to other children. Don’t tell your child that they should get good grades like their sibling, or complain to a teacher that their reading below their grade level. Even if you mean well, your child will feel discouraged and lose motivation because they’ll think that they can’t live up to your standards anyway. Even without verbally comparing your child in their hearing, it’s better to avoid an attitude of comparison at all. Let your child know that you are committed to helping them do their best to reach their learning goals. It’s not a race, and even if your child is behind in one subject area it doesn’t mean that they’ll never catch up.
Focus on Their Strengths
Because there are many different learning types, it might take a while sometimes to find where your child has strengths. But chances are, you can already see an area where they shine. Sometimes a child with a reading difficulty will excel in math, for example. It’s important to celebrate your child’s strengths, otherwise they might take them for granted and only focus on their shortcomings. Help your child to remember that their entire identity is not wrapped up in their learning disability. By teaching them that they don’t have to be perfect and that it’s good to highlight what they’re good at and work through what they might struggle with, then you will be building a foundation for them to have good self esteem and compassion for others.
The Connections Therapy Center
The Connections Therapy Center is a top therapy center serving families of children and adolescents with disabilities. Our team consists of the leading experts in the fields of pediatric speech, occupational therapy, speech-language pathology, and behavior sciences. We offer intensive, hands-on therapy for children and adolescents as well as resources for families. We are real therapists helping real families with real issues. If you are concerned about your child’s behavior, take a moment to fill out our quick questionnaire. If you’d like to schedule an appointment, call 202-561-1110 (Washington, D.C. office) or 301-577-4333 (Lanham office) or contact us via our website. Want to keep up with our latest news and blog posts? Follow us on Facebook, Twitter, and Pinterest.