ONLINE HOMESCHOOLING FOR CHILDREN WITH LEARNING DISABILITIES
It is a tough job for a student with a learning disability to cope up in the traditional classroom environment. Students with learning disability require perceiving themselves first, as someone having difficulty in following the regular classes. The next step involves contacting the school’s disability services office so that the instructor can figure out what special accommodations are needed on a critical basis. Special accommodations include postponing deadlines just for them, working with the disabilities services office to help students get access to assistive software, or a specific professor for the student.
But practically, this simple step is not easy for a child with disability to follow. First of all, he might not realize he has a disability, and even if he does, he might not be able to gather all his courage in letting others know about his prolonged weaknesses. For such students, online learning is the most relaxing means of attaining education. They do not have to shout out to the world, especially their classmates regarding their disabilities, so it creates a safer and more comfortable zone for them to concentrate on their studies rather than thinking whether he shall be bullied or laughed at.
Expressive language disorder, dyslexia, reading processing disability, and attention deficit disorder are some of the common learning disabilities. In an online learning environment, if the online instructors are not made aware of the learning disabilities of certain students, it becomes very difficult for them to assess these students fairly. However, if while reviewing the student’s assessments, quizzes or general responses from interactive sessions, the instructor senses some non-synchronous answers, repetitive submission of assignments past deadlines or several erratic answers, he might ask the student cordially via phone or email, to talk freely to his or her Education Advisor which might make the student open up about his condition finally.
An Online instructor should be someone who is comfortable to converse with, open, responsive, benevolent and sensitive. They also need to be alert in order to analyze such disabilities from their performances within a short span of time, before it is too late. They can converse with the student directly as to what issues he is facing and what measures he can take to help him. If too long a time is taken to figure out the disability, then it is a great loss for the student, since he would feel infuriated and defeated at the same time and would stop paying attention to studies. Intricate reviewing of assignments followed by a genuine feedback is essential to carry out a more transparent relationship with the student.
Certain measures that can be taken for students with learning disabilities to succeed:
- Proper planning: It is the only means by which they can meet their goals and work on smoothly.
- Vibrant course material: The course material should be presented in a more vibrant form, mainly in non-text format.
- Software with special features: Use of certain software programs that can read out the text, can help immensely.
- Downloaded Textbooks into wireless devices: Textbooks can be downloaded into wireless reading devices such as Kindle so that these students can maximize the font and use black colored font on white background. That way, it would speed up their grasping power.
- Role of Instructional designers Most times, it is not possible to change the design of the entire course for a Single student, but instructional designers are specially hired to make amendments to the course elements as per the disabled child. No doubt they are asked to give tests on students and their disabilities.
Basic Benefits of Homeschooling
- Disabled students thrive on one-on-one interactions. They tend to deteriorate in their performance if they are placed in a competitive environment such as the traditional school. A non-competitive surrounding with a parent-designed curriculum works best for them.
- This learning method is supportive of these category of children. Moreover, considering their family lifestyle, beliefs and traditions, this can be a fruitful method of learning.
- It also helps them escape bullying.
Basic Challenges of Homeschooling
- Homeschooling won’t work if both the parents are working.
- Demarcating between schoolwork and family time is not that easy for some families, especially if it is a big family.
Is online homeschooling a good option for your child with learning disabilities?
Online courses are structured in such a way that it is fun-filled and interactive in a manner that provides children with learning disabilities, with learning opportunities that motivate them to explore, research and discover in a comfortable environment. Constant guidance by parents and teachers makes the child self-assured and independent in the long run. Trimming the harassment of incessant bullying and the flexibility to regulate the pace of the course as needed by the child makes online schools a brilliant and powerful means to change the world’s age-old outlook and shrug off the harsh social stigmas, especially those which trap these children and hinder their personal and educational growth. A superb range of multimedia tools further makes it easy for these home school curriculum to be a success and to bring a difference to the lives of these children.
These online programs use a specially-designed environment to supply the course material to the children. Children are able to do their coursework from the much-needed comfort of their homes, which eases out the procedure of imparting education on a wholesome level, for the child as well as his parents. The technology should be fully availed and experimented with, in order to come up with grand solutions to help these children. All these curriculum can be altered into the form that is the most convenient for the child.
Once completed, students can submit assignments online, and their teachers can check them and provide valuable feedback to the student via the specialized online environment. This results into a time-effective and speedy process. Students are mentored to eventually grasp their material on their own in order to be self-sustaining in their day to day activities. Teachers and parents have to be by the side of these children all the time to shower their care upon them. Online homeschool also aims to cultivate the sense of social blending in the minds of the children. This is the only way to deal and get away with the taboos and dishonorable acts forced by the society upon these children. All they need is a bit of consideration on the part of the society, in order to be strong and show their mettle to the world someday. The growth of their personality is directly proportional to their academic performances.