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Visual learning disabilities: useful tips
Visual learning disability is often interchanged with visual and audio learning disabilities. This is due to the fact that both perceptions are an integrated part of the learning process. A visual learning disability is defined as a lessening of the ability of the brain to make sense and interpret information and data that is seen through the eyes. So much of our education is based on the visual learning centers of the brain that children with this disability must be carefully coached and taught by specialist teachers and tutors. Family life can be stressful for anyone with a child that has a visual learning disability. The disability has various levels of condition and severity and every family can use all of the useful tips that exist.
There seem to be six types of visual learning disabilities. A child may have one or a combination of types. Spatial relation refers to the ability to determine and accurately perceive objects in space with relation to other objects. Visual discrimination is the ability to identify the unique characteristics of an object and differentiate it from other objects. Visual closure is the ability to recognize an incomplete object or item and make the connection as to what the object is. Object recognition is the ability to recognize objects that are completely familiar to them. Whole and part relationships is the circumstance where the child may be able to recognize the pieces of an item but not be able to put the pieces together to see the whole part. It works in reverse as seeing a whole item, but not an objects unique parts.
Children with visual learning disabilities may often experience problems in other developmental areas. The child may have problems coordinating visual input with their surroundings. This can cause slow development of both gross and fine motor skills. An example of this would be the physical movement required when on a child’s swing and the back and forth movement needed to move the swing. The child with the visual learning disability cannot seem to make the connection of what is needed to get the swing moving. Sometimes these children are called clumsy, as their attempts seem so and are not very successful. The good news is that most children grow into that ability, but at a slightly later stage in childhood.
If you are a parent, teacher or student, you will need to have as many helpful tips and useful tools as possible. The first thing to remember is that no two children are alike and that includes learning styles. Intervention on a professional level is a requirement. Specialized teachers that have the background to know and understand the needs of the child is paramount. This must be combined with reinforcement both at home an in the classroom, to ensure that the child maintains good self-esteem.
Identifying the child’s strengths is the first step. You can use these steps to springboard to the learning areas that need to be worked. The child with visual learning disabilities needs to have reading material to help them keep focused. Large print books can be a start, but some children become overwhelmed with too much on a page. You can easily create a window style covering for the pages that give the child single focus on one item then move to the next. Colorful artwork and specialized textured paper can draw the eyes and other senses. When addressing the topic of writing, you need to recognize that the child needs specifically designed boundaries. Lined paper with much more bold lines or even raised lines will help to maintain focus. A simplified concept of worksheets will give the child the opportunity to complete the task without it becoming overwhelming. Reinforcing written materials by reading out loud gives the child the time to process in both visual and auditory and make the connections.
The information supplied in this article is not to be considered as medical advice and is for educational purposes only.
|Brain Health1 Apr 2010|