For most parents, realising that their child grapples with a learning disability is difficult to process. Immaterial of a child’s disposition, they all need support, encouragement and love. Playing a critical role within this space are educational psychologists. They essentially work to devise, implement and monitor teaching techniques that fit a child’s learning style. One of the biggest factors defining psychology that everyone is different; however with appropriate strategies and techniques these differences can be bridged.
In seeking ways to help your child, understand that you can’t cure them. Instead, you need to equip them with the emotional and social tools to guide their behaviour. In any given space, a child is only likely to build a confident image of themselves, if the ones around them support and nurture their needs.
By pushing them to conform to norms or by trying to alter their learning style, a parent or teacher can inadvertently shut off the child’s development, whether emotional or intellectual. Helping them address their challenges by letting them find their footing, educational psychologists in the UK devise plans that are customised to the child’s needs. Not limited to one specific branch, educational psychology also draws from other domains, such as neuroscience. This not just enables them to gain an insight into a child’s learning potential, but also supports the development of appropriate tactics that can help a child reach their potential.
Specialising in this field, services such as Changing Minds can carry out an educational psychologist assessment, consultation, development work, and intervention to help a young individual change for the better. With a close focus on educational psychology, these services do the following:
- They determine whether your child is an auditory learner, by evaluating if they learn through listening or if they love music, etc.
- They test if your child is a visual leaner, by evaluating if they learn through seeing or reading. They also evaluate if they perform well when presented with visual material, do well when presented with diagrams or are inclined towards drawing and reading.
- They check if your child is a kinaesthetic learner by evaluating if they learn best when moving around, do well if they can touch what they’re supposed to learn, or love drama, dance, and sports.
- They look for specific weaknesses and strengths in underlying learning skills
- They assess the academic achievement of the child can compare it to what is expected for the child’s educational level and age.
- Evaluate any negative or positive stimuli.
- Evaluate any environmental problems.
- Evaluate any prevalent factors that affect the learning process of the child.
Equipped with years of understanding the specific challenges of a special educational needs (SEN) child, services like Changing Minds help children overcome barriers they possess. Be it Asperger’s syndrome, ADHD, dyslexia, autism or auditory processing disorder, educational psychologists have a comprehensive understanding of how to help in the following:
- Communication & Interaction
- Cognition & Learning
- Social, Emotional & Mental Health
- Sensory & Physical Needs
With a SEN child, their needs can change over a given period of time, so instructional plans must evolve accordingly. Otherwise, such plans can cease to be effective or result-oriented.