Learning Disabilities

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Tips for parents of children with learning disabilities

Learn about learning disabilities. The more you know, the more you can help yourself and your child. See the list of resources and organizations at the end of this article.

  • Praise your child when he or she does well. Children with learning disabilities are often very good at a variety of things. Find out what your child really enjoys doing, such as dancing, playing soccer, or working with computers. Give your child plenty of opportunities to pursue his or her strengths and talents.
  • Find out the ways your child learns best. Does he or she learn by hands-on practice, looking, or listening? Help your child learn through his or her areas of strength.
  • Let your child help with household chores. These can build self-confidence and concrete skills. Keep instructions simple, break down tasks into smaller steps, and reward your child's efforts with praise.
  • Make homework a priority. Read more about how to help your child be a success at homework. (See resource list at the end.)
  • Pay attention to your child's mental health (and your own!). Be open to counseling, which can help your child deal with frustration, feel better about himself or herself, and learn more about social skills.
  • Talk to other parents whose children have learning disabilities. Parents can share practical advice and emotional support. Call NICHCY (1.800.695.0285) and ask how to find parent groups near you. Also let us put you in touch with the parent training and information (PTI) center in your state.
  • Meet with school personnel and help develop an educational plan to address your child's needs. Plan what accommodations your child needs, and don't forget to talk about assistive technology!
  • Establish a positive working relationship with your child's teacher. Through regular communication, exchange information about your child's progress at home and at school.

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