Myth Vs. Reality About Learning Disabilities
Myth 1. People with LD are not very smart.
Reality. Kids with learning disabilities are just as smart as other kids. Intelligence has nothing to do with LD. In fact, people with LD have average to above average intelligence. Many have intellectual, artistic, or other abilities that permit them to be defined as gifted. Studies indicate that as many as 33% of students with LD are gifted.
Myth 2. LD is just an excuse for irresponsible, unmotivated, or lazy people.
Reality. LD is caused by neurological impairments, not character flaws. For some people with LD, the effort required to get through a day can be exhausting in and of itself. The motivation required to do what others take for granted is enormous. Learning disabilities are problems in processing words or information, causing otherwise bright and capable children to have difficulty learning. The disabilities involve language—reading, writing, speaking, and/or listening.
Myth 3. LD only affects children. Adults grow out of the disorders.
Reality. It is now known that the effects of LD continue throughout the individual's lifespan and "may even intensify in adulthood as tasks and environmental demands change" (Michaels, 1994). Sadly, many adults, especially older adults, have never been formally diagnosed with LD. Learning disabilities cannot be outgrown, but they can be identified reliably in kindergarten or first-grade children, or even earlier. Research clearly demonstrates that the earlier a child is given appropriate help for a learning disability, the more successful the outcome.
Myth 4. The terms dyslexia and learning disability are the same thing.
Reality. Dyslexia is a type of learning disability. It is not another term for learning disability. It is a specific language-based disorder affecting a person's ability to read, write, and verbally express him or herself. Unfortunately, careless use of the term dyslexia has expanded so that it has become, for some people, an equivalent for LD. Four out of five children identified with a learning disability are diagnosed with a reading disability (or dyslexia). They have trouble learning how spoken language translates into written text. Since every subject—including math—requires reading and writing, a reading disability affects all of a person's school-based learning.
© ______ 2006, Merrill, an imprint of Pearson Education Inc. Used by permission. All rights reserved. The reproduction, duplication, or distribution of this material by any means including but not limited to email and blogs is strictly prohibited without the explicit permission of the publisher.
Add your own comment
- Kindergarten Sight Words List
- The Five Warning Signs of Asperger's Syndrome
- First Grade Sight Words List
- 10 Fun Activities for Children with Autism
- Graduation Inspiration: Top 10 Graduation Quotes
- What Makes a School Effective?
- Child Development Theories
- Should Your Child Be Held Back a Grade? Know Your Rights
- Why is Play Important? Social and Emotional Development, Physical Development, Creative Development
- Smart Parenting During and After Divorce: Introducing Your Child to Your New Partner