Learning Disorders In Middle Schoolers

Learning disabilities is a term that covers a wide array of learning problems. A learning disability is not a reflection of a child’s intelligence or ability, but rather a difference in the way that they process and receive information.

Common Learning Disorders in Preteens

According to the National Center for Education Statistics, 7.1 million students in the United States in the years 2018-2019 received special education services. Of those 7.1 million students, 33% of them had specific learning disabilities. 

If your middle schooler experiencing difficulty with reading comprehension or math skills, trouble with open-ended test questions and word problems, dislikes reading and writing; avoids reading aloud, has poor handwriting or organizational skills, has trouble following classroom discussions and expressing thoughts out loud, or spells the same word differently in a single document, they may be struggling with a learning disorder. 

Common learning disorders in preteens are:

Dyslexia: Dyslexia is characterized by reading problems where there is difficulty understanding the relationship between sounds, letters and words. Reading comprehension problems occur when there is an inability to grasp the meaning of words, phrases, and paragraphs. Symptoms include difficulty with reading, writing, spelling, and speaking.

Dyscalculia : A preteen’s ability to do math can be affected differently by a language learning disability, a visual disorder, a difficulty with sequencing, memory or organization. A student with a math-based learning disorder may struggle with memorization and organization of numbers, operation signs, number facts, and telling time. 

Dyspraxia (Sensory Integration Disorder): Motor difficulty refers to problems with movement and coordination whether it is with fine motor skills (cutting, writing) or gross motor skills (running, jumping). A motor disability is sometimes referred to as an “output” activity meaning that it relates to the output of information from the brain. In order to run, jump, write, or cut something, the brain must be able to communicate with the necessary limbs to complete the action.

Dysphasia/Aphasia: Language and communication learning disabilities involve the ability to understand or produce spoken language. Language is also considered an output activity because it requires organizing thoughts in the brain and calling upon the right words to verbally explain something or communicate with someone else.

Auditory Processing Disorder: Professionals may refer to the ability to hear well as “auditory processing skills” or “receptive language.” The ability to hear things correctly greatly impacts the ability to read, write, and spell. An inability to distinguish subtle differences in sound, or hearing sounds at the wrong speed make it difficult to sound out words and understand the basic concepts of reading and writing.

New Focus Academy Can Help

At New Focus Academy, we know each student comes to us with a unique mind, background, skill set, and personal experience. Our team works with your family and child to find the specific evidence-based approaches that will help to build confidence, social growth, and motivation to become productive and self-sufficient.

Too often a child’s diagnoses & limitations are the defining factors of identity. We base our treatment on the groundbreaking concepts of Positive Psychology. We highlight each student’s strengths and use them to create a plan based on building confidence and motivation for personal growth. For more information please call (435) 383-4369.