One of the most troubling characteristics of the Learning Disabled child can be the lack of age-appropriate social skills.
Conditions such as Asperger’s Syndrome, ADHD, Generalized Anxiety Disorder, etc., are linked to differences in brain chemistry and function. Therefore their difficulties with social skills are also biological and organic in nature.
However, that explanation does little to help a child connect with his peers.
Children with learning differences often go through their school years being isolated, lonely, confused and bullied.
The pain these children experience is so destructive that it pervades every aspect of their lives.
As self-esteem goes down, so can school performance. Meanwhile, behavior problems can arise.
This becomes a vicious cycle of never-ending hits to self-esteem.
What to do? Parents need to teach directly the skills other children absorb naturally.
Teach your child to actively listen to social interactions, then discuss what he observed.
Try not to interfere in minor playtime squabbles. It is important for children to learn to compromise and settle their own disputes.
The playground is a template for adult life.
Children need social connections other than school, as well. Clubs, church, sports and music are great ways to enrich a child’s social life.
Finally, children with learning disabilities will need more intensive training in social skills.
At The Sharon School for Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorders & Learning Disabilities, projects and play activities are used as a format for teaching appropriate social interaction.
The school strives to provide a natural, easy environment so children can relax and relate.
This is an integral part of the school program. Starting in January, the school also will offer after-school social skills classes for students who attend other schools.
The Sharon School recognizes that some children learn differently.
They perceive the world differently and processes experiences differently.
These children have unique talents and gifts. Imagine the world without the contributions of Albert Einstein, Mozart, Thomas Edison or many other notable people with learning differences.
A child with learning differences is much more than a label.
Let’s not let him suffer for lack of training in those very important social skills.
The Sharon School
200 Oak Tree Lane, Nicholasville