Back-to-School Red Flags

I don’t know about you, but as a mother I always worried about my child starting a new school year.  Is she going to transition into her new class well, will she be able to understand the new material, should I have worked with her over summer, and what I ask my self the most is if her first report card is going to be good?  I have had these fears ever since I can remember, and Clovis Unified being as competitive as it is, my fears only increased.  I don’t know about you other mothers but I also dreaded back to school parent-teacher conferences.  The things my daughter’s teacher would say, “she needs to study more if she wants to succeed this year,” “she is not applying herself,” and my favorite “is there anything going on at home, because your daughter seems very distracted…”  Of course my first initial reaction is to put blame on the teacher and say “if you were doing your job right, then…

But instead, I always tell the teacher we will do our best to get her on track.  Where I failed for so many years was thinking that Clovis School District had to high of standards and that the faculty were failing these children.  Then one year, i decided to read the Back-To-School Red Flags a bit differently.  I decided to be more proactive and get my daughter help outside f school.  LearningRx Fresno helped my daughter and warned me about the Back-To-School Red Flags.

As kids head back to school, LearningRx of Fresno is sharing some insider tips on the red-flag phrases and behaviors that may indicate a learning struggle.

“You don’t need to wait for the first parent-teacher conference to find out how your child is doing academically,” says LearningRx Vice President of Research & Development Tanya Mitchell. “There are clues to look for at home. For example, are they taking hours on end to complete homework? Do they regularly complain of ailments to try to get out of going to school? Do they forget what they’ve read as soon as they’ve finished reading it? Do they frequently complain that they ‘just don’t get it’?

Mitchell says these actions can hint of a learning struggle, which are usually caused by weak cognitive skills, such as slow processing speed, weak working memory or visual processing or difficulty paying attention, to name a few.

Although it’s often difficult for parents to determine if certain struggles or behaviors are just a normal part of the learning process or if they’re a more comprehensive learning issue, Mitchell says there are some phrases that hint of the latter.

For example: If the teacher says, “I know he’s smart, but …”

  • “… his work doesn’t show it.”
  • “… I can’t quite get through to him.”
  • “… he makes sloppy mistakes.”

“This is one of the most frustrating symptoms of weak cognitive skills for parents and teachers: A smart child locked inside a struggling student,” says Mitchell. “These phrases are good indicators that several cognitive skills are very strong, while others are deficient and are causing a big bottleneck of information in the brain. At LearningRx, we do an initial assessment to determine which brain skills are weak, then strengthen them with a customized personal brain training program to make a faster, more efficient learner.”

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