Ten Tips for Teaching Learning Disabled Children
1. Break everything down to its smallest unit, and spend a long time on every step.
2. Teach only the most important things if time is a problem. Don't shortchange the reading and math. Everything else is optional for now, and can be taught in context of other things. (For instance, during reading lessons, read about history and science as well as reading literature.)
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3. In math, stick to the basics if this is hard (for now, until they are mastered).
4. If a child can't read, nothing else matters. If you have to, do nothing but reading every day until he catches on.
5. LD kids will know something perfectly one day, and act like they've never seen it the next. A child will swear you taught him to do something a certain way because he somehow got it in his mind that this is how it's done. It's not your fault--it's how they are. Hang in there!
6. Review, Review, Review. It has to get into their long-term memory and it takes a long time.
7. Don't forget the public schools if they are supportive. Consult with local special education and homeschooling support groups to find out what special services you are entitled to, and how to get the most out of your local public school system. The experts in special education are often very supportive and will answer your questions about how to help and encourage your child as they come up. If you don't want to formally use the schools, seek out special education teachers on a personal level.
8. Don't be afraid of labels. In today's world, you have to have labels to get help. They're just a name to get you what you need. The label doesn't define your child. Get the evaluation and be grateful for the label. They also give your child an explanation for his challenges, which can keep him from thinking he's stupid.
9. Become the world's greatest expert on your child's disabilities. Read all the special education books in the library, buy the best ones, and search the internet. Learn the vocabulary. You'll be taken more seriously by the professionals if you can talk the talk, and you'll be better prepared to make choices.
10. Don't be afraid to tell your child what his disabilities are. Treat a label not as a problem or a monster to be feared, but as an interesting challenge. Sympathize: "You're right. It isn't fair that you have to work three times harder than any other kid to learn this. Good thing you're a hard worker!" Let them become experts too, and help them practice an explanation for their disabilities.
(This is my author identity. You're welcome to find my regular identity, too, but you're warned--it gets lots of religious stuff, politics...whatever I feel like posting. The author one mostly gets homeschooling and writing unless I forget who I'm signed in as. Yes, I play Farmville and Frontierville on both identities.