“Teacher” contains the word “teach”, but being a teacher is not limited to the educating role only. The word “teach” is dominant, but it is predicated with the capacity to plan flawlessly in order to maximize the teaching or learning process.
Differences of Learning Focus
As Psychology explains, each person has a different intellectual focus, area of excellence, or way thinking. This affects the individual’s learning approach in a certain field. This explains why some people may be good in Math, but are not in English or Science. This is also the reason why people could have different points of view regarding one subject.
An individual’s personal/intellectual perception is influenced by the systems of beliefs, culture, and experiences to which the person has been exposed to. These differences spare the world from being monotonic as many thoughts can come up about one topic and more interesting areas are developed.
However, the problem with these differences is that, sometimes having a different perception or field of interest from the majority can lead to being considered having a learning disability. Just because a person has a separate point of view or has difficulty in comprehending a subject matter that is beyond his or interest, the individual is already considered dull or a slow learner. This becomes a frustration to the person who is struggling to cope up.
When a student is having a hard time catching up in a subject, it could be that the typical teaching or learning method used is not appropriate for the student. Teachers need to understand that each student has a different learning need—and to be considered effective mentors, they have to adjust to this.
Yes, there are children who are suffering from a certain condition of learning disability like dyslexia and dyscalculia. Learning disabilities are disorders that give people a hard time acquiring social and academic skill. However, this does not mean that they are hopeless. They still can learn and cope up with the world’s advancement.
The Role of Effective Teachers
This is the reason why Special Education (SPED) teachers exist. They specialize in dealing with children who have learning disabilities. Meaning, they have been trained to provide education using different strategies—those that are meant to deal with the particular disorder.
People with learning disability are not excluded from reaching their dream. In different career ranges, there are those who were diagnosed with a learning disability who have already been able to set a mark—and this is all because they gone through the training of effective teachers.
What is the strategy of effective SPED teachers? They use the strength of the student in the learning process. Since every person has strong intellectual areas, the teacher looks out for these. They then skillfully juggle these strengths with the weaknesses to help the student succeed.
To show how individuals with learning disabilities are still able to learn with the help of effective teachers, here are illustrations:
1. First teachers at home
Since family is the most basic unit of a community, it is where a person starts to learn. As we grow, we tend to learn basic survival skills like eating, walking, and cleaning ourselves. Who taught us to do these were no other than our parents and other adults who we lived with. Since they were able to pass on these skills to us, it just means that they were able to use good teaching strategies—and they were effective. Learning to talk and understand language as a kid is another proof that our first teachers are effective.
2. Professional teachers
As children come to the right age, they are sent to school where they learn academic skills. The paid education professionals became our teachers at this point. Their role is to impart knowledge by using learning techniques that are mandated by the school curricula. Although there are teachers who are not effective—since they just go to school to be paid—there are those who enjoy their job and they give all effort just to help their all their students according to their intellectual level. Through perseverance and dedication, it has been proven that even the slowest learners can develop certain skills.
For those students who have learning deficiencies, and cannot really cope up in a usual learning setting, they have the alternative option to go through SPED. Here, they will be handled by teachers who hold degrees in this kind of education.
3. Informal mentors
Aside from the formal teachers that are responsible for education, there are also those who are imparting knowledge to people through non-academic settings. We have spiritual leaders like priests, counsellors, and pastors. There are also social mentors like fraternity/sorority masters and organization heads. In career development, we have team leaders, business management coaches, and company trainers. These and many more others can influence our learning process and, thus, helping us to develop ourselves in spiritual, social, psychological and other aspects of our personality.
Aside from our family, school teachers, and informal trainers, there is another great teacher that is very effective in molding us—and that is no other than LIFE. No reading, grammar, and mathematical skills can measure a person’s value. Even a person with a learning disability has a life outside school, so he or she has more to cope up with in the outside world. With problems, adjustments, and responsibilities that need to be dealt with everyday, an individual is trained to survive. For this reason, it is no wonder that even those who were not able to go through a formal education were able to live a normal and strong life. This fact is an evidence how life is an effective teacher for everyone.
Surviving learning disability
A person’s worth is not measured by how fast he or she can catch up in a lesson. With persistent determination to finish the race, even if it means being the last to arrive at the finish line, and of course, with the help of dedicated and effective teachers, surely, success is not impossible to achieve for an individual. Thus, parents, professional educators, and all those who want to help someone who is struggling with learning today should put this up as a challenge: THERE ARE NO LEARNING DISABILITIES, ONLY INEFFECTIVE TEACHERS.