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LEARNING DISABILITIES Read the literature attached and answer these questions 1 Define the term learning disabilityThe federal government defines learning disabilities in Public Law 94-142 as amended by Public Law 101-476 Individuals with Disabilities Education Ad-IDEA Specific learning disability means a disorder in one or more of the basic psychological processes involved in understanding or in using language spoken or written which may manifest itself in an imperfect ability to listen think speak read write spell or to do mathematical calculations The term includes such conditions as perceptual handicaps brain injury minimal brain dysfunction dyslexia and developmental aphasia The term does not include children who have problems that are primarily the result of visual hearing or motor disabilities or mental retardation emotional disturbance or of environmental cultural or economic disadvantage 2 What is the difference between a learning disability and a learning difficulty Individuals with learning difficulties may appear to possess the characteristics of a person with learning disabilities However it is only when those learning difficulties are so pervasive or severe that they markedly interfere with learning or day-to-day living that a learning disability is suspected Careful assessment by a multi disciplinary team that utilizes a variety of standardized instruments informal tasks and observation is an important part of verifying the existence of learning disabilities 3 Why do some learning disabilities not show up until high school A student with a high-average or superior intellectual level may maintain grade level performance in elementary school but develop academic problems in higher grades Some professionals feel baffled because if a child doesnt show early academic problems it seems unlikely that LD is the reason for later problems Other professionals suggest that a capable student may develop sufficient compensations in the easy school years to make acceptable grades but become unable to manage when faced with the note taking longer reading assignments foreign language requirements and similar demands in secondary and post-secondary schools 4
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