Social skills
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Your child will learn many things in life – how to listen, speak, read, write, and do the math. Some skills may be harder to learn than others. If your child is trying his best to learn certain skills but is not able to keep up with his peers, it’s important to find out why. Your child may have a learning disability (also known as LD). If your child has an LD, the sooner you know, the sooner you can get your child help.

Parents are often baffled by the problems presented by a child with learning disabilities. Often this “invisible disability” does not become obvious until a child reaches school age. Even then, difficulties may be subtle and hard to recognize.

One of the biggest worries for a parent with a differently-abled child is the way other children of the same age treat their child. How can you as a parent help your child develop empathy and build inclusiveness in school?

When Mai spoke to a team of child psychologists, it was understood that the most common response of children to a differently abled kid was to label them. They are often called hurtful names by other children, who are unaware of the effects that name-calling can have on a differently abled child. As parents, it is our primary responsibility to explain to our kids about sensitivity and how they can help another child from being bullied.

  • One of the most effective ways to help children with learning or physical challenges is to ensure kids their age help them instead of mocking them
  • Teaching kids to empathize with other kids, thereby ensuring your child grows up to be a responsible citizen, which is every parent’s wish
  • Encourage your child to help his/her classmates/friends with their studies, homework etc. as this would also help your child reinforce his/her learning
  • You could also explain to your child about learning disabilities and ADHD with examples so that they understand the seriousness of the issue

Here’s how you can have a conversation with your child:

“Not all kids can learn and grasp things easily with less time. There are some kids who may find it difficult to grasp things and may take a lot of time to understand and learn concepts, which you may learn in an hour or so. So, it’s important for you to be sensitive towards these kids. Sometimes all they need is a little extra help.

Here is how you can help them – When you have a free period, you can share your notes with your friend and make sure he/she completes it. You may write down things from the board really fast but by the time your friend is able to do so, the teacher might erase the board, so you can help him/her write down from the board and so on…”

Also, many kids are also bullied into withdrawing friendships from differently-abled kids at school. Ensure that the school counsellor has sessions with your child’s class to instil a sense of empathy, friendship and understanding as a positive step forward, in case there is a/are differently-abled children in the class. 

Download the Mai app to improve your child’s skill in empathy.

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