If my kid is Smart, why does he struggle in school?

learning disabilities- Parenting resources by ZenParent

Why doesn’t my child focus while studying? Why does she forget the words after learning them just a day ago? Why doesn’t he write the spellings correctly? Why doesn’t she remember her times tables?

Innumerable questions that some parents grapple with. Baffled by their children’s inconsistent school performance and listening to the teachers’ repeated requests to spend more time teaching at home, these parents look for the reasons for their child’s struggles. One parent went to the extent of asking, “Why doesn’t he perform better even after I have scolded and hit him so many times?”

Now, this last question was really alarming to me. It was hard to believe that some parents resort to hitting and shouting for their children’s under performance in school.  Does that work? Does that make things better? Does the child start ‘performing’ in school?

The short answer is a big NO. All these academic difficulties faced by a child indicate the possibility of a learning disability (LD).

1. It’s human nature to ‘want to do well’ in whatever we do.We tend to gravitate towards tasks that we are good at and avoid the ones that we are not at. As adults, we avoid the tasks that don’t lie in our strength areas. We have the choice because we are adults.Children do not have that option. They are expected to do well in everything in school. Children also love to succeed but if they struggle in some areas, they will hate it and find excuses to avoid those tasks.

learning disabilities in children- Parenting resources by ZenParent

2. There is ALWAYS a genuine reason behind children’s struggle in school. Believe me, they can’t make this up. It’s not that they “don’t” focus, or read, or spell or learn tables; they just “can’t.” As adults, it is our responsibility to try to understand why they “can’t.” What comes in the way of their success in doing what some other children can do easily?

3. The answer is that they can’t learn the way other children do. Their minds are wired differently. They need different methodology to learn, which is more systematic, direct and explicit.These children are smart. Most of them can reason very well. They can engage smartly in discussions and are quick to learn the latest technologies and gadgets. However, when it comes to getting school work done, they falter, they struggle and become a mystery to their parents and teachers. They are the students with LD.

4. LD is more common than we might think. As many as 1 in 5 people have LD. Chances are that we all know at least one person with LD. Many successful individuals such as Richard Branson, Walt Disney, Tom Cruise are some of the famous personalities who have come out and talked about their learning challenges as kids and as adults too. Albert Einstein had LD.

5. As a concerned parent, the first and the most important step for you is to ‘know’ that if your child struggles in school, it’s not his/her fault. She needs your support and understanding. As a parent, pledge to yourself that you will do anything and everything to be with her in her journey of being a learner.

Image Source Main1

Is your child struggling at school? Concerned but not sure who to ask? 

Ask your questions on our chat session on 15 Oct at 12 noon. Reena Gupta, founder of mindsera.com and an experienced clinical psychologist, will be conducting the chat. Please sign up at ZenParent.in to attend – this chat will focus specially on learning difficulties faced by children in the 5-10 year age group.

loader