Each individual is unique. Children learn differently- they have their own style of learning and they learn at their own pace. Some students struggle to read and write. Some find maths a very difficult subject to understand. These children have learning difficulties.
Do you have learning difficulties? Here are some tips to help you.
- Understand you are not alone
About 10% of children have learning difficulty. They have found their own ways to manage their difficulties. Be confident of your abilities. You too can do reasonably well in academics.
- Can I have a successful life?
Certainly, you can have a successful life. Many leading personalities around us have learning difficulties. They have overcome their difficulties. Remember, you have your own set of abilities. The key is to develop your abilities.
- I do not do well in studies. Am I less intelligent?
It is a misconception that a person who does not do well in studies and especially in maths is less intelligent.
Earlier it was thought that an intelligent person must be good at reading, writing and maths. Now we look at intelligence in a different way. Understanding rhythm-music and dance-, excelling in sports, drawing and painting skills, ability to visualize and design are all considered signs of intelligence. The world is now talking about multiple intelligences. The fact that you have learning difficulties doesn’t make you a less intelligent person.
- Are there remedies for my learning difficulties?
Yes, remedies are available for most of the learning difficulties. You can take help from a special educator. An educational programme to suit your requirements can be designed.
- I feel anxious about my performance. What can I do?
Many children with learning difficulties undergo tremendous stress. Many children, like you, have a poor opinion about themselves. Changing the way in which you think about yourself is the solution to many of your problems. Tell yourself that you are a capable person. Visualize you are a successful person. Have belief in your abilities. Don’t hesitate to take the help of a psychologist.
- Why should I know about my learning style?
We learn in three ways- Some people learn best by seeing or reading (visual), others by listening (auditory), and still others by doing (tactile-kinaesthetic). Every one of us has a dominant learning style. Learning happens when a child uses the dominant learning style to study. An auditory learner would be greatly benefited by listening to lessons which are recorded. Tactile-kinaesthetic learners would find writing on a board a more fruitful way of learning. A board gives them more space to write and move their body. They may like to walk while reading. Visual learners can use highlighters of different colours. Drawing diagrams and writing notes can be very beneficial. Use of different coloured pens can be useful. Closing the eyes and visualizing in mind what is learnt may be a good way of revision for a visual learner. Find out from an expert, your dominant style of learning. Learn more about learning styles.
- How should I go about my daily routine?
- Be regular in your habits.
As far as possible, go to sleep and wake up at the same time. Follow regular timings for having food. Similarly, have a fixed time for studies. Sit at the same place for studying. Regularity helps your brain to be prepared for the activity.
- Our brain requires oxygen and water. Deep breathing provides oxygen to the brain. Aum chanting is excellent for our brain. Drink one glass of water on an empty stomach. After you study for some time, drink some water because water in the brain is used up when you study. Before sitting for a test don’t forget to sip some water. Drink water during the test also.
- Our brain works even when we are asleep. When we get up, our brain is tired. Unlike other cells in our body, the cells in our brain cannot store energy. It requires energy in the morning. Therefore, a good breakfast is a must. Never skip breakfast.
- Learn how to study better. What is important is not how much time you spend studying. What is more important is how you study. Get tips from your parents, teachers and others on effective study methods.
- Spending too much time before TV destroys your ability to concentrate. Don’t spend too much time playing video games either.
- Yoga and meditation are good for you. These relax your body and mind. These are good for enhancing your memory power.
- Do lots of physical activities. Play with your friends. Physical activities improve your brain power!
- Do puzzles. Doing puzzles is a great way of making your brain smart.
- Teach others what you learn. Teaching is the best way of learning. Teach your parents. If you don’t get anyone to listen to you, stand before a mirror and take a class! Do this regularly.
- Have a board in your house. Use the board to do revisions.
- Don’t ignore the importance of revision. Frequent revisions help you to remember what you have learnt.
- Improve your ability to express. Writing fifteen sentences every day is an excellent activity. Get your sentences corrected.
- Above all, get a good night’s sleep. Our entire body needs rest.
- Be determined. Have confidence. Be inspired- many children with greater disabilities than you have done well. You too can be successful!
- Be regular in your habits.