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Leonardo Da Vinci










WHAT IS A LEARNING DISABILITY?1) A learning disability is any of a number of conditions that make the process of learning difficult because of the way the brain processes information.

2) A disorder found in children of normal intelligence who have difficulties in learning specific skills.


3) An extreme difficulty in performing a specific mental skill such as reading or doing mathematical problems. It is inconsistent with the person's overall intelligence and sometimes linked to perceptual or memory problems.4) A disorder in basic psychological processes involved in understanding or using language, spoken or written, that may manifest itself in an imperfect ability to listen, think, speak, read, write, spell or use mathematical calculations.


5) A variety of disorders, including hyperactivity, dyslexia, and hearing problems, that can interfere with a person's ability to learn

6) A disorder that hinders people's ability to either interpret what they see or what they hear . These limitations are characterized by difficulty in reading, writing, and arithmetic.


Causes of SpecificLearning DisabilitiesPhysiological:Brain injury may occur prenatally if exposed to toxins, during birth if deprived of oxygen, or postnatally from an accident or illness. Heredity if one or both parents have a learning disability, the chance of the child having one is 30-50%. Chemical imbalance biochemical disorder in the brain.

Causes (cont.)

Curriculum and Environmental Contributors:Poor nutritionAdverse emotional climateToxins in the environment - lead-based paint, cigarette smokeToo little stimulation Lack of educational materials English as a second languageChildren who live in poverty

Causes (cont)Lack of medical careLow parent education and less modelingFew early learning experiences

In most cases, a single cause is not known, and it is very unlikely that a primary cause is ever identified.However, a combination of one or more of these causes are most often considered. It is not uncommon for SLD to co-occur with social, emotional, or behavior problems.

TYPES Motor difficulties (Dyspraxia)Math difficulties (Dyscalculia)Language difficulties(Aphasia/Dysphasia)Reading difficulties (Dyslexia)Writing difficulties (Dysgraphia)Auditory and visual processing difficulties



A language-based learning disabilityInvolves a cluster of symptoms resulting in difficulty with specific language skills, particularly reading. The core difficulty is with word recognition and reading fluency, spelling, and writing.Dyslexia is diagnosed in people of all levels of intelligence.There are no known causes of dyslexia.Most people with dyslexia need help from a teacher, tutor, or therapist specially trained in using a multisensory, structured language approach.

Dyslexia occurs in Individuals with normal vision and normal intelligence. Such individuals usually have normal speech but often have difficulty interpreting spoken language and writing. Dyslexia seems to be caused by a malfunction in certain areas of the brain concerned with language. The condition frequently runs in families.

Signs and Symptoms of Dyslexia Dyslexia can be difficult to recognize, but some early clues may indicate a problem. problem with new words, debdifficulty rhymingProblems linking letters with soundsWriting words backwardsProblems following directions with many steps


DyscalculiaThe word "dyscalculia" means difficulty performing math calculations. In other words, it just means "math difficulty". And specifically, it means a learning disability which affects math. Sometimes confusion arises when we start dealing with the term "dyscalculia" as it relates to "special education services".

When a student's math difficulties are severe enough to meet this criteria, special education services are indicated. On the other hand, "dyscalculia" has no clearly defined criteria.

DyscalculiaGood at speaking, reading, and writing, but slow to develop counting and math problem-solving skills Good memory for printed words, but difficulty reading numbers, or recalling numbers in sequence Good with general math concepts, but frustrated when specific computation and organization skills need to be used Trouble with the concept of time-chronically late, difficulty remembering schedules, trouble with approximating how long something will take

Poor sense of direction, easily disoriented and easily confused by changes in routinePoor long term memory of concepts-can do math functions one day, but is unable to repeat them the next day Poor mental math ability-trouble estimating grocery costs or counting days until vacation Difficulty playing strategy games like chess, bridge or role-playing video games


Dysgraphia is a learning disability that affects writing abilities. It can manifest itself as difficulties with spelling, poor handwriting, and trouble putting thoughts on paper.

Common signs of dysgraphia include: Tight, awkward pencil grip and body position Illegible handwriting Avoiding writing or drawing tasks Tiring quickly while writing Saying words out loud while writing Unfinished or omitted words in sentences Difficulty organizing thoughts on paper Difficulty with syntax structure and grammar Large gap between written ideas and understanding demonstrated through speech.

DyspraxiaA motor coordination disability (also known as Sensory Integration Disorder).Adults with dyspraxia may have difficulty carrying out tasks such as driving, cooking, and household chores or grooming. Children with dyspraxia may be late in reaching developmental milestones, such as rolling over, sitting, standing and walking. They may frequently fall over, and when older may avoid PE and swimming lessons at school or any other sporting activity.

AphasiaA language disability (the student has difficulty understanding spoken language).inability to comprehend languageinability to pronounce, not due to muscle paralysis or weaknessinability to speak spontaneouslyinability to form wordsinability to name objects

DYSPHASIAA language disability (the student has difficulty with reading comprehension).Difficulty remembering wordsDifficulty naming objects and/or peopleDifficulty speaking in complete and/or meaningful sentencesDifficulty speaking in any fashionDifficulty reading or writingDifficulty expressing thoughts and feelingsDifficulty understanding spoken language

Central Auditory Processing Disorder A sensory disability related to processing sounds.


have trouble paying attention to and remembering information presented orally, and may cope better with visually acquired informationhave problems carrying out multi-step directions given orally; need to hear only one direction at a timehave poor listening skillsneed more time to process informationhave low academic performancehave behavior problemshave language difficulties (e.g., they confuse syllable sequences and have problems developing vocabulary and understanding language)have difficulty with reading, comprehension, spelling, and vocabularySign and symptoms of Central Auditory Processing Disorder


Visual Processing Disorder A sensory disability related to processing images.


Some symptoms of Visual Processing DisorderMixing up letters (i.e. d and b)Mixing up words by changing letters around (i.e. saw and was)After reads a story they cannot always tell the detail what the story was about.Skipping words, letters or paragraphs when reading.Learner would get headaches during and after reading.


Non-Verbal Learning Disorder A visual-spatial disability related to body control.


Sign and symptoms of Non-Verbal Learning Disorderdelay in understanding or using spoken language; difficulty understanding simple instructions; lengthy pauses before naming objects and colors; limited awareness or interest in books; difficulty coloring or drawing; short attention span (won't sit through one storybook). difficulty understanding and following instructions;trouble remembering what someone just told them; lacking motor coordination when walking, playing sports, holding a pencil or trying to tie a shoelace; frequently losing or misplacing homework, schoolbooks or other items; unable to understand the concept of time (confused by the difference between yesterday, today, and tomorrow.


Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder (ADHD)Observe child for ATENTION featuresAnnoyingTemperamentalEnergeticNoisyTask incompletionInattentiveOppositionalNegativism

ADHD cont. average onset 3 yr old identification upon school entry rule out developmental delay, genetic syndromes,encephalopathies or toxins (alcohol, lead) risk of substance abuse, particularly cannabis and cocaine, depression, anxiety, academic failure, poor social skills, risk of comorbid CD and/or ODD, risk of adult ASPD associated with family history of ADHD, difficult temperamental characteristics

Clinical Picture as a Whole. Difficulty learning new skills, relying on memorization Trouble learning about time Difficulty remembering facts Confusing basic words (dog, cat, run) Poor coordination, 'accident prone', unaware of physical surroundings Having a hard time learning the connection between letters and sounds (Phonetics) Spelling and reading errors suc