LEARNING DISABILITIES (LD)

Disorders of the basic psychological processes that affect the way a child/adolescent learns. Many children/adolescents with learning disabilities have average or above average intelligence. Learning disabilities may cause difficulties in listening, thinking, talking, reading, writing, spelling, or arithmetic. Included are perceptual handicaps, dyslexia, dyscalculia, dysgraphia and developmental aphasia.

   DYSLEXIA

A particularly common (approximately 15% of the U.S. population is affected) learning disability characterized by problems in expressive or receptive, oral or written language. Problems may emerge in reading, spelling, writing, speaking, or listening. Dyslexia is not a disease. Children/adolescents with dyslexia do not "see backward". Dyslexia results from differences in the structure and function of the brain. Children/adolescents with dyslexia are unique, each having individual strengths and weaknesses. But their common problems are in language processing, which can be observed as difficulty in translating language to thought (as in listening or reading) or thought to language (as in writing or speaking). As a result the child will often experience a gap between learning aptitude and achievement in school.

THE WHOLE CHILD/ADOLESCENT PHILOSOPHY

Because we are looking at a child/adolescent with a differently wired brain, a phenomenon which is believed to have occurred before or shortly after birth, the possibility of sorting out the physiological, perceptual, emotional and social components of how this child/adolescent experiences the world (both academic or non-academic) is extremely difficult. We know that the dyslexic child/adolescent, because of his different kind of mind, may often possess special talents in areas that require visual, spatial, and motor integration. Others are highly creative and have unusual ability in areas such as art, athletics, architecture, graphics, electronics, mechanics, drama, music, or engineering. If these budding abilities have not been observed and encouraged, the dyslexic child/adolescent may begin to experience himself as a failure or misfit as compared to other children/adolescents. He will begin to lose confidence in himself and his self-esteem will suffer. He needs special guidance, nurture and support from the important adults in his world. This is not a difficult task if he can be perceived for the whole child that he is and has the potential to become. The Whole Child/Adolescent Center is specially trained to give you the support and guidance you need to help your child/adolescent to realize his true potential, both in and out of the classroom.

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