Some children have a hard time in school. Certain subjects might be particularly difficult, or your child may struggle with schoolwork in general. This can be scary for a family as you try to set your child on a path for academic and career success. Your child may struggle with study skills, or not knowing how to prepare for tests.
He may have trouble developing a plan to complete an assignment. She may get confused about due dates. You might find that your child has missing assignments or low grades. It also could be that your child lacks confidence in his or her own academic abilities and becomes stressed or embarrassed when asked to read or do a math problem.
Your child may cry during homework or simply refuse to do it. Your child might struggle in one particular academic subject. Your child may hate reading, for example. Unfortunately, if he or she struggles in reading, all other subjects will be impacted because reading is required for most academic tasks.
What do challenges with Learning Problems look like?
- Having trouble in school?
- Demonstrating poor academic performance?
- Struggling to understand what is going on in class?
- Falling behind?
- Working hard but still lost?
- Smart but not achieving academic success?
- Having trouble sleeping the night before a test or a big day at school?
- Hating reading, writing, or math?
- Reporting her favorite subjects are recess and lunch?
- Declaring homework a war zone?
Why is Learning Problems happening?
Learning problems can wreak havoc on the whole family. There can be several reasons for an individual’s learning problems. Those who struggle to study will have problems with many academic subjects and tasks. They may have trouble with planning how to solve problems or to go about an assignment, initiating tasks, monitoring their own progress, or with metacognition (thinking about one’s thinking). The good news is that executive functions develop throughout childhood and into early adulthood; your child’s brain is still ‘working on it’. More good news here is that these higher order thinking skills can be taught. School success tends to be a yardstick by which kids measure themselves. When they are struggling, their self-esteem takes a hit. Children who do not feel good about themselves tend to perform lower, and then they feel even worse about themselves as a result. One potential sign that your child may have significant learning problems or a learning disability is inconsistent performance. Your child’s teacher may comment that “he could do this yesterday, and now he already forgot.” Learning disabilities almost always require remediation and intervention. If you suspect your child has a learning disability, it is wise to consult with the school and to consider a comprehensive evaluation.
How can I manage Learning Problems at home?
Children who struggle with their learning tend to experience emotional symptoms or behavior problems.
Emotional symptoms: If you see a sudden drop in your child’s general happiness, motivation, or enjoyment of life, it is important to consider depression or significant emotional distress.
Behavior problems: If you see your child refusing tasks, having tantrums, or giving up easily, these behaviors are red flags. In these cases, you would be wise to consider an evaluation by a psychologist.
Evaluating emotional or behavioral problems: Although the school should be consulted for any learning problems, school psychologists are generally not licensed to diagnose clinical or psychiatric disorders.
They can be tremendously helpful in terms of helping your child with emotional symptoms, and can identify learning disabilities through a school evaluation process.*
However, a licensed psychologist, Licensed Clinical Social Worker (LCSW) or Licensed Professional Counselor (LPC), would be needed to make diagnostic decisions regarding emotional or behavioral disorders.
Learning disabilities: If you suspect your child may have a learning disability, it is important to talk to your child’s school. It may be that resources are available for intervention through the school’s Response to Intervention program.
Your child may require a 504 Plan or Individualized Education Program (IEP) for accommodations or services. The good news is that many people with learning disabilities learn how to live with these challenges and thrive. Although most learning disabilities are lifelong, the intensity of the struggle and challenge will tend to lessen significantly with the right kind of support and intervention.
How can Clear Child Psychology help with Learning Problems?
We Help You, Immediately
Our Free Discovery Session is a 20-minute consultation where we can talk one-on-one about the concerns and questions you have about your child.
We Help Determine Next Steps
Our Initial Consultation allows us to get a deeper understanding of your child’s needs and determine if an assessment is appropriate.
We Build a Customized Plan
Our Assessments allow us to determine your child’s specific strengths and challenges. We can use this information to develop a customized support plan which includes: referrals
We Connect you with the Right Professionals
Once we understand your child’s needs, we will help families get connected to the right specialists. No more guesswork, no more wasted time and resources.
We Provide Ongoing Coaching and Support
Our Coaching Packages allow us to continually support families as they continue their journeys. Parental coaching, life-skills practice, and school advocacy are just a few examples of ways we help.