Not hard at all: how to help a child with learning difficulties

Children are not always ready to understand a parent’s “should” and common core math workbook . You can hear a lot of arguments “against” them. Studying, just like work for adults, is often monotonous work, and the alternatives to play, watch TV or go on a social networking site are sometimes impossible to refuse without making an effort.

Adult Tasks
Task #1. Explain why to learn. Develop an interest in the benefits that come from studying different subjects and sciences now and how knowledge will be useful in the future. Dreaming of becoming a world famous hockey player and not needing to study? How do you communicate with a foreign coach and go to foreign tournaments? You need English. You need Russian and literature to give interviews, because being an athlete does not mean being illiterate.

Task No.2. Avoid double standards. If you insist that a student devotes time to reading, but you have never been seen with a book, it is difficult to prove to him the importance of literature. Contradictions between demands and real life are discouraging.

Task #3. Stick to the golden mean and kinesthetic learning. It is a thankless task to mold a humanitarian into a technician just because he comes from a family of hereditary engineers. The other extreme is to completely stop paying attention to those subjects that are given with difficulty.

Task #4. Be careful with criticism. Schoolboy will do his homework or write a test under pressure, but he will not learn much, because studies will be more and more associated with something uninteresting and unpleasant. Fear forces you to focus on your inner feelings, and most of the information is simply skipped.

The desire to grind on a difficult task can also have external obstacles. It’s important to understand what’s getting in the way in each case. If it is not gaps in knowledge, unlearned material in time and falling behind in the curriculum, it could also be performance-related conflicts in class, difficulties with the teacher, or physical or emotional fatigue.

Task #5. Create pleasant associations, positive and comfortable atmosphere during classes. Constant failures in studies give rise to resistance and aversion. The child ceases to feel control over the situation, loses involvement, becomes passive. His whole experience says, ‘Why try if you can’t do anything?

“For children who have not yet entered adolescence, the best form of learning is play and combining it with traditional forms of presentation. Logical thinking and the ability to exert volitional effort are formed by about the age of 12.

All appeals to conscientiousness, to must-do’s or “think about your future” before this age are ineffective, the child is not biologically ready to understand you at this level. Be simpler, motivate through play and entertainment. Demonstrate patience, attention, and become partly a child yourself, and then it will be easier for you to understand him.

Decreased motivation and weak interest in learning on the part of the child against the background of a difficult family situation (divorce, scandals, etc.) Here your task becomes more difficult, globally – it is normalization of partner relations (in most such cases, difficulties in learning disappear). A joint visit to a family psychologist (necessarily with the father) can help, then psychological correction of behavior will be many times more successful.