“If a child can’t learn the way we teach, then we must teach the way they learn. “
Here in AZ school has already started for most children but in many areas of the country school will be starting after Labor Day. No matter when school starts for your child the most important thing to remember is that until your child is old enough to be his/her own advocate, you must be the advocate for your child. This does not mean that you have to be rude, or raise your voice but it does mean that you have to speak up, be respectful, keep the lines of communications open and let the powers that be know what your child’s needs are.
Not all children learn the same way and yet our school system increasingly seems to be going in that direction. Our school system is expecting all of children to be round pegs that fit nicely into round holes. Fortunately, and I do mean fortunately, not every one is a round hole. Some are square, some are triangles and some may be rhombuses or even trapezoids.
There are enormous pressures on teachers today. Not only are they expected to teach but they also must do the impossible and ensure that every child in their class scores high on an arbitrary standardized test. And for a lot of teachers they must make sure these scores are high or they risk losing their job. Add that to the cutting back on school counselors and school nurses and suddenly the job of advocating for your child lies squarely on your shoulders.
All my children have ADHD but my youngest also deals with some learning difficulties. Thus, she was definitely not a round peg in the school system. I spent a lot of time talking to teachers and principals trying to communicate her needs. Sometimes I was met with some resistance but most of the time we were all able to work together to do what was best for my child.
So…if your child learns differently than other children please keep the lines of communication open with their teacher. Sit down with the teacher, explain the situation and then work as team to come up with a plan that best serves your child’s needs. All teachers want what is best for their students – so share the information you have and let it be a win-win situation for everyone!
Have some fun today!