Of all the labels boxing anyone into a set of expectations, this one may be the most vague and all-inclusive. We know how unfair that is, how little it reflects your struggles to achieve in any environment, and how it may even erroneously imply an intellectual deficit. Learning disabilities may result in emotional and social difficulties (such as lowered self-esteem, depression, frustration, anger), leading to further difficulties in the school, work, and social environments. You know that there is no lack of intelligence in your child or yourself (though the repeated frustration and lack of success might cause you to unfortunately question even that sometimes), so why is learning so challenging?
Even the more specific sub-categories that may have been given to you, such as dyslexia or dysgraphia, don’t recognise your truths. We recognise that often when someone has trouble reading, he is given more to read, and strategies to try. In many cases, that’s what reading tutors offer someone with dyslexia. For someone who has trouble writing: give her more to write. The supposed premise of that approach – the problem will go away if you just train and practice – misses the point.
Any end-point behaviour, or task, relies on organized interdependent motor, sensory, and processing functions. If those are not in place, all the effort put into remedial education and tutoring and external strategies will, at best, have a limited and temporary benefit. We identify with you why you have trouble reading; what interferes with your ability to write, read, understand what you’re reading, add/subtract, etc; what’s going on at a deeper, prerequisite level.
While each disorder and each individual is different, we have observed that frequently the following issues are interfering with the individual’s ability to learn:
- Distractions due to visual, auditory or tactile irregularities
- Vestibular inadequacy to support muscle tone, visual tracking and linguistic/phonetic awareness simultaneously
- Irregular interhemispheric integration interfering with auditory-visual integration, parts-to-whole configuration
- Light sensitivity and visual-motor dysfunctions that cause irregular visual/visual-motor feedback
After our in-depth observational assessment, and taking a detailed developmental history, we create a program to address those prerequisite systems. We don’t do that alone. We collaborate with you (and any supportive family member or friend, if you wish them to be involved). The program is yours, not ours. You’ll implement it, not us. And it will change as you change – because change you will.
Once those systems function interdependently, smoothly and consistently, the performance-level skills that depend on them become efficient and effective. It’s not that your program will have “cured” your learning disability; it’s that now your brain and body are ready and able to learn.