Plan Ahead for a Great Year by Boosting Your Childs Self Esteem
“The amazing thing about being you is that there is something in the world that you are the best at; that no one else can do like you can. You just have to go find it.”
(My 12th grade English teacher)
The ultimate goal for any child is to experience a total fulfillment and maximizing of one’s potential despite any perceived and/or real limitations. Special needs children should be able to communicate their own thoughts, needs, opinions, and wishes with support from educators, family, classmates, and friends. Is it that easy for a child to freely communicate their needs and feel comfortable in their own skin? There are many people involved in the development process of a child, especially those with special needs.
Threats to self-esteem in students with learning disabilities
While there is no menu of characteristics that captures the threats to self-esteem in individuals with learning disabilities (LD), there are a number of traits, frequently observed in people with LD that contribute to feelings of low self-worth. One interesting research finding is that by itself, having the special education classification of specific LD has not been shown to have a negative impact on self-esteem. Rather, there are several factors that seem to impact self-esteem in individuals with LD in negative ways.
The factors below are taken from studies conducted by The National Academy for Learning Disabilities (NCLD). www.ncld.org
Communication style and social cognition
- Seems to be overly egocentric and not interested in the responses of other speakers (when nothing could be farther from the truth),
- Has difficulty judging when it is her/his turn to participate in a conversation,
- May misinterpret feelings and emotions of others and not realize when their behaviors are bothersome or annoying,
- May have problems with visual spatial planning and self-regulation, resulting in difficulties judging how close to stand to someone during conversation, how to assume and maintain a relaxed posture, and when it might be appropriate to touch.
- Not sure how to understand or explain personal strengths and weaknesses to others,
- Is a poor self-observer and has trouble sizing up and reflecting upon what is going right (and wrong) during social interactions.
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