A sizeable number of student population face challenges with reading and comprehending. The low level of understanding coupled with the fear of sharing and expressing ideas adds to the misery. Such students feel detached from the mainstream and prefer to dwell in the dark and lonely corners of isolation. These signs and symptoms could be a hint towards Learning Disability (LD). Impediments to learning and participation is not a child’s fault, curse and impairment.
Students with LD suffer from ‘input problem’ i.e. getting information into the brain. Some may have difficulty with sound input, called ‘auditory processing disorder’. For some, visual input could be a challenging proposition, often referred to as ‘visual perception disorder’. The more severe one could be integrating the fragments of information into a coherent whole. The hints may include:
The above subtle hints are reflected on paper by problem with handwriting, punctuation, grammar. Students may have difficulty with language output- stammering, groping for words etc. Though there is no specific definition, the students may showcase one or more of the above challenges discussed.
Stigma may stop families from approaching a professional for help. But in most cases, parents fail to decipher the turmoil the child is going through every day. They usually label it as tantrums thrown by the child to do away with studies or work. Schools can play a pivotal role in identifying the pains and turmoil experienced by the child. With proper support, training and extra care by the teachers, psychologists and occupational therapists, the child can fight and rise to his full potential. Many schools support and launch campaigns to create awareness about the rights of children with learning disabilities. The aim is to change the attitude. The child need not be marginalized as he/ she has the capability to run into mainstream with little support and polishing.