Reading, writing and math learning disabilities
Back in the 70’s and 80’s being gifted was not a well-known concept; neither was Autism. One of my best friend’s was a young girl with Asperger’s Syndrome, a high functioning form of Autism. Just a couple years ago, it was revealed that ten of the children that befriended me had some form of Autism.
Along with Autism, one of them had a reading comprehension disability, resulting in an agonizing effort to understand and surmise the important ideas in reading passages. Some learners have issues with word recognition, while others have weaknesses in phrasing and fluency according to Ann Logsdon.
Many of the perceptive readers, who read a paragraph correctly remember the details and can verbally sum what they just read. In any learning disability, the brain is incorrectly processing what the eyes are seeing, the nose is smelling, the ears are hearing, the hand is sensing or touching and what the mouth is tasting. This definition is in accordance to sensory integration disorder. The brain is the common component that is affected and is not processing the information the way that typical people’s brains process.
Another one is dyslexia. Please find more information about it here. Dyslexia is a disorder that complicates the ability to learn how to read, interpret letters and symbols. Acquired dyslexia is acquired through a brain injury, such as stroke, and bears the same learning difficulties. Dyscalculia is a math related disability in which the learner does not understand basic problems such as addition, subtraction, multiplication, and division. If a learner does not understand concrete math, the more abstract the problem is (as in algebra and geometry), the more difficult. When a learner cannot make sense of math theories and models, it’s hard for them to remember; therefore they will not be able to build on the basic skills to master complex problems.
To recap from the University of Pittsburgh's document difficulties with reading comprehension have been reported in a range of clinical disorders, such as hydrocephalus, autism, nonverbal learning disorder, specific language impairment, Turner’s syndrome and Williams’s syndrome. For someone with reading comprehension learning disabilities, psychological tests can be daunting, frustrating and repetitive. There are other ways of proving one’s ethical and moral being that need to be administered. Unfortunately, with the majority of all employers using online psychological testing, with predisposed personality types, many honest and moral candidates are quickly dismissed. The main reasons – 1.) The test overwhelms and creates anxiety for the test taker; thus the person “fails.” 2.) The majority of employers do not want to hire people with disabilities due to the possible liabilities and accommodations required by law. Many companies contradict the theory of responding positively to hiring people with disabilities. Most ironically, a few of these organizations are involved in Early Intervention and diagnosing learning disabilities, delays and disorders.
Children on the Autism Spectrum have communication and language disorders that can be alleviated through quick detection and administration of therapeutic interventions and strategies. The 1970’s and 1980’s clinical definitions of learning disabilities didn’t include Autism as a disability that was easily defined and diagnosed. Learning disabilities weren’t also not used for fear of labeling a child for life, possibly preventing them from receiving the same schooling, having the same opportunities that other children did or being employed. Thanks to the Individuals with Disabilities Education Act, more children are being given appropriate accommodations in their schools and workplaces.