Testing, Quick And Dirty

A frightening statistic: According to the latest research, between 30 and 50 percent of all people diagnosed as having Attention Deficit Disorder also have some kind of learning disability. That’s a whole lot of little dudes and dudettes with a whole lot of challenge.

It’s not everyone, though. And one of the problems with this pair of comorbid disorders is that it’s difficult to determine if it’s only one of them or both. We found that separating out the two of them was almost impossible until we had each of the little dudes tested specifically to determine if they had a learning disability.

But first, before we kicked in for the expensive tests, we ran the idea past our doctors, a couple of teachers and the like to see if they had any concerns of idea that it could be a learning disability.

Now, for those of you who are worrying about this with your little dudes or dudettes, ADDitude magazine has come up with a relatively easy-to-give quick-and-dirty diagnostic test for your kid.

LD is a neurologically based disorder that results in problems processing and using information. Different children have different patterns of learning strengths and weaknesses; there is no one profile that describes all children. With that caveat, the magazine then goes into a checklist of some symptoms that could indicate your child has an LD. The questions are divided up between preschool, elementary school, middle school and high school.

Some of the statements from elementary school, k-4: My child has problems with rapid letter recognition and with learning phonemes (individual units of sound).My child has trouble blending sounds and letters to sound out words or remembering familiar words by sight. 

As you can see, it’s an exceedingly basic checklist, but it does have some quite specific markers for which you should be on the lookout.

Of course, once you decide that there is reason to worry that your child has an LD, the question arises: What next?

Well, according to the article, the best thing for you to do then is to go back to your child’s teacher. Discuss your concerns with the teacher and, if the teacher agrees with you there is a concern, you both can go talk to the special ed teacher to request a formal evaluation. If you don’t want to go through the school, you also can take your child in for an education/psychological evaluation with an outside professional.

Either way, the best thing for you to do is make sure, by setting up a thorough, professional evaluation what issues your child has. Only by knowing these issues can you begin to address them in an academic setting.

Of course, this is only a possibility. Most times, it probably will end up that your child has been goofing off a bit much or something like that. Still, I can tell you from personal experience that, if your child does have an LD, bringing in caring classroom teachers and special education teachers is definitely the way to go.

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