Educational Toys to Help Children With Learning Disabilities

Written by nathan macfarland rodgers
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Educational Toys to Help Children With Learning Disabilities
Seeing "3" with a graphic of three fish and writing "3" can help learning-disabled children. (learning basics image by Sergey Mostovoy from Fotolia.com)

Raising children with learning disabilities may seem like a daunting task, since they organise and process information differently than other children. According to Kids Development, a company dedicated to providing parents with information about the healthy growth and progress of their children, boys and girls with learning disabilities may have trouble learning with traditional methods, but they should not be considered any less intelligent than their peers. Learning disabilities don't discriminate, so any educator or parent may find himself facing such obstacles, but with a little out-of-the-box thinking and some patience, learning disabilities can be overcome, and there are plenty of playtime options to help with the cause.

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Books

Reading books to a child may increase her ability to listen and comprehend words and sentences. As she grows, she will develop a personal interest in books and will seek them out on her own. The Child Development Institute says that it's important for children with learning disabilities to pick out books they're interested in and to share their reading experiences with parents. Depending on the severity of the reading disability, children may need to start with flash cards depicting illustrations and featuring only one word at a time. Constant exposure to reading materials is important for the proper advancement of language skills.

Chalkboards

Small chalkboards or dry-erase marker boards can help children with writing disabilities. Kids Toy Club states that children with a writing learning disability may have good ideas just like anyone else, but they may have more difficulty putting those thoughts down in writing. An erasable writing board affords children the ability to make multiple attempts at writing words and sentences, as well as the chance to simply wipe away their mistakes.

Building Blocks

Some learning disabilities may interfere with the normal development of motor skills or the recognition of basic shapes. Blocks increase hand-eye coordination, and multicolour building toys stimulate vision and help children distinguish different hues. As a child grows, he can graduate to smaller blocks and more complex building sets, such as Legos or K'nex, for more in-depth lessons about shapes and symmetry.

Abacuses

Using an abacus can help children understand math in a nontraditional way, since there is a physical representation of the numbers involved. It may help children who can't quite grasp traditional math on paper to gain new insight into basic mathematical concepts. Computer-based math games may serve a similar purpose.

Music Toys

Kids love to make noise with plastic rattles, tambourines, drums, or even xylophones or toy pianos. These toys can improve motor skills, and they can even introduce children to the concept of cause and effect. Furthermore, music can become an outlet for self-expression and help build a child's self-esteem, which may prove especially useful for a child with learning disabilities, since other forms of expression may develop more slowly for her.

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