Learning Disabilities Checklist
Most people have problems with learning and behavior from time to time. During the school years, parents and educators should be on the alert for consistent (and persistent) patterns of difficulty that children and adolescents may experience over time as they may signal an underlying learning disability (LD). While variations in the course of development are to be expected, unevenness or lags in the mastery of skills and behaviors, even with children as young as 4 or 5, should not be ignored. And because LD can co-occur with other disorders, it’s important to keep careful and complete records of observations and impressions so they can be shared among parent, educators and related service providers when making important decisions about needed services and supports.
Keep in mind that LD is a term that describes a heterogeneous (‘mixed bag’) group of disorders that impact listening, speaking, reading, writing, reasoning, math, and social skills. And remember: learning disabilities do not go away! A learning disability is not something that can be outgrown or that is ‘cured’ by medication, therapy, or expert tutoring. So, early recognition of warning signs, well-targeted screening and assessment, effective intervention, and ongoing monitoring of progress are critical to helping individuals with LD to succeed in school, in the workplace, and in life.
The following Learning Disabilities Checklist is designed as a helpful guide and not as a tool to pinpoint specific learning disabilities. The more characteristics you check, the more likely that the individual described is at risk for (or shows signs of) learning disabilities. When filling out this form, think about the person’s behavior over at least the past six months. And when you’re done, don’t wait to seek assistance from school personnel or other professionals.
Sheldon H. Horowitz, Ed.D. Director of Professional Services, NCLD
Deanna Stecker, M.A. Senior Associate, Education Programs, NCLD
To download the complete checklist, click here.
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Reprinted with the permission of the National Center for Learning Disabilities. © 1999-2009 National Center for Learning Disabilities, Inc. All Rights Reserved.
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