What is a learning disability?
A learning disability is a neurological disorder that affects the brain’s ability to receive, process, store and respond to information. The term learning disability is used to describe the seemingly unexplained difficulty a person of at least average intelligence has in acquiring basic academic skills.
Many learning difficulties are language-based. In our school system, most information is taught via language – listening, speaking, reading and writing – so it is not surprising that otherwise intelligent students with language impairments fail to succeed. See below for some language development milestones.
What are some symptoms of language-based learning difficulties?
Your child may be experiencing language-based difficulties if they have trouble:
|Thinking of the right word||Using grammar words properly|
|Using grammar words properly||Forming full sentences|
|Forming full, logical sentences||Linking ideas in paragraphs|
|Telling stories in a logical order||Spelling|
|Understanding grammar||Decoding words|
|Comprehending information quickly||Making sense of sentences/paragraphs|
|Understanding sarcasm, jokes, etc.||“Reading between the lines”|
|Following conversations and directions||Reading quickly|
How can a speech-language pathologist help?
Speech-language pathologists have a unique knowledge base of how cognition interacts with language. Speech-language pathologists help build core and compensatory language skills so that students won’t need to rely on tutors for all their work in the future.
Is there anything I can try myself?
Language-based learning difficulties tend to be complex to remediate, so it is best to obtain professional guidance.
What language skills should you expect?
By Age 5
HOW TO FIND A SPEECH-LANGUAGE PATHOLOGIST:
Call 877-388-3819 or email firstname.lastname@example.org for more information on assessment and treatment at Lear Communication. You can also contact the Ontario Association of Speech-Language Pathologists and Audiologists at www.osla.on.ca or 800-718-6752. There may be government funded services available at your local school, hospital or Community Care Access Centre.