Tips to Help Students with Learning Disabilities Study

Students with learning disabilities do well with the right supports and study skills appropriate to their learning style.

Learning disabilities can be challenging for students, but they are not impossible barriers to education. With the right supports, every child can learn. When it comes to studying, coping with a learning disability often means finding the right strategy for the student. The right strategy and a lot of patience can mean the difference between success and failure. The following tips can help parents and students succeed.

Tip #1 – Get organized.

School often means an overwhelming amount of paperwork. Helping your child keep everything organized goes a long way when it comes time to study. Having separate notebooks and folders for each class allows important papers to be at the ready when it comes time to study. Have a dedicated space for homework and studying at home, and make it a routine part of every day.

Tip #2 – Know how your child learns best.

Everyone learns differently. Some children are visual learners, some are kinesthetic learners. You know your child better than anyone else, and know how he or she thinks. Playing to your child’s strengths will help reinforce classroom material and make retention easier.

Tip #3 – Break it down.

Children with learning disabilities often do not know what to study, let alone how to study. These children need explicit information. Talk to your child’s teacher about the specific areas to concentrate on for tests, and review your child’s text books to see what information is being taught.

Tip #4 – Make learning familiar and fun.

One of the best ways to remember facts is to come up with anagrams, word associations, and silly phrases that stick in the brain. Do you remember how to spell “arithmetic”? Maybe not, but you might be able to remember that “A Rat In Tom’s House May Eat Tom’s Ice Cream.” There are lots of memory devices available to help children remember all sorts of complicated facts.

Tip #5 – Develop test taking strategies.

Sometimes, being able to pass a test is about strategy. When it comes to answering questions, teach your child to concentrate on the answers that they are sure of, eliminating some of the choices. With multiple choice questions, remember that one answer is usually obviously wrong. Read the question and answer carefully in order to narrow down the possible correct answer.

Tip #6 – Look at the big picture.

Parents of children with learning disabilities are often focused on the immediate goal. Getting through the third grade may be challenging enough as it is. But the most important thing to remember is that you are preparing your child for the rest of his or her life. Being successful in life requires a healthy, positive attitude and the willingness to work hard. These are attributes that are not measured on tests.

School is difficult enough for most children. Children with learning disabilities often have to work twice as hard, but they can succeed. Set goals, stay positive, and stay focused on what is most important, and your child will succeed not just in school, but in life.