Learning disability interventions are planned actions taken by people supporting individuals with a learning disability, or taken by the individual themselves, to facilitate and improve their learning. Interventions are used to aid learning of both adults and children diagnosed with a learning disability. These interventions can be performed in the classroom, sometimes with the use of special equipment, or performed at home in the form of one-on-one extra tutoring.
A person with a learning disability does not have reduced intelligence; instead they find it harder to perform learning related tasks such as concentrating and getting motivated. Learning disabilities can prevent individuals from perceiving and understanding things in the same way that a person without a learning disability might. The way that the person sees, hears and feels the world can be different because these inputs are processed differently.
Interventions are actions taken by the person with the disability or by the people supporting them, to reduce the impact that the disability has on their learning. Learning disability interventions influence the learning process as it currently exists, for example, a child might be experiencing problems with recognizing numbers and to help remedy the problem, they receive extra tutoring using pictorial associations. Children can present with learning disabilities even before they start school as an infant.
Autism can present difficulties with learning, for example, some social behaviors that usually come naturally to a child, need to be taught to a child with autism. An initial learning disability intervention, often performed by individuals in the medical profession or social services, is to educate the child’s parents about the disability and how to help the child progress. This may involve written information, assessments, classes and visits from health workers. Parents or guardians can learn exercises such as practicing words and short sentences to help improve language skills.
Learning disability interventions can be used within the classroom to help the child or adult learn. Classroom assistants are sometimes employed to provide additional support to those with learning disabilities. An individual with dyslexia may be given additional support from a classroom assistant to assist with their reading and writing skills.
Teaching assistants often eliminate the need for children to attend special schools or classes to receive the support they need. Learning disability interventions may however include special schools for students with learning disabilities. A person with memory retention problems might attend a special school if their condition significantly impedes their ability to learn.
One-on-one tutoring after school or at home, are also forms of learning disability interventions. The teacher may use practice and repetition as a way of reinforcing learning. Lessons are well structured with extensive one-to-one interaction. Individuals with a short attention span may be provided with shorter, more frequent tutoring sessions, structured in an attention grabbing way, perhaps with colorful equipment and lots of variation.