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Learning Disabilities

Coping at SchoolGeneral Problems At School

Most students with LD have problems with academic subjects. However, those same problems of reading, sequencing (putting information in the proper order, such as the letters of the alphabet or days of the week), timing, and social clumsiness carry over to many aspects of school life.

A student who does not sequence easily may have trouble finding the right locker in a long row of numbered lockers. Remembering the locker combination is an even bigger problem. If the student has problems with timing as well, he may continue to fiddle with the lock and try to crack the code. Result? Late for class.

Some students don't have to deal with the hassle of a locker but are still late to class. If a student has timing problems she may get so involved in talking with a friend that she misjudges the time she needs to walk to a class at the far end of the building. She also may not finish her lunch quickly enough so that she has time to go to the restroom before her next class starts.

Since many students with LD tend to count on a regular schedule to help them know where to go and what to do next, snow days with shortened schedules or special assemblies that drop the last class may be extremely confusing. The student may go to the wrong class or fail to show up at all.

Some students find that they survive school better if they develop a friendship with a buddy. Together they can play off one another's strengths to handle the cafeteria line or read school notices.

Having a learning disability is a real difficulty all day long for the person who suffers from it. At the final class buzzer, most students with a learning disability are utterly worn out from the sheer effort they have put out just to live through a school day.

Thomas, a senior, pulled his favorite teacher into a corner of the cafeteria where no one could hear them.

“Quick, help me,” he said as he thrust a piece of paper into her hand. “Write something short that I can copy and write in people's yearbooks. I don't know what to do when they hand me their books. Make it funny, too.”

Many of the ideas previously listed put the responsibility on you—the student—for taking action or asking for help from others. Each of us is our own best teacher. Taking charge of one's learning is good for everyone, including those with learning disabilities.

If you have a learning disability, you should not expect easy answers or any one way to solve all of your school problems. No one program will quickly teach you to read; no one tip will make your life easy; no one piece of equipment holds the key to getting As. Even so, many people with learning disabilities succeed, and you can be one of them.

Additional topics

Science EncyclopediaLearning DisabilitiesLearning Disabilities - Coping at School - Tips And Tricks That Work, General Problems At School