Brain Research and Learning Disabilities


Study explaining learning disabilities

The study is an anatomical proof demonstrating the disparity in thebrain development of children with nonverbal learning disabilities(NVLD) compared to others. The disability does not impede childrenfrom having ordinary language skills. However, they perform poorly inmathematics and answering illustration puzzles (Henion &amp Fine,2013). Since most of the children depict hardships comprehendingsocial indications, some researchers have suggested that the disorderis linked to higher functioning autism. In the study conducted on 150children from eight to eighteen years, through MRI scans of theirbrains, the conclusion was that children noted to have the disabilityhad lesser spleniums contrary to children with disorders like ADHD,and those without learning disabilities (Henion &amp Fine, 2013).The children’s brain action was also evaluated following theirviewing of videos in MRI, which depicted both advantageous anddisadvantageous illustrations of social association. Since thebehaviors were different, the conclusion was that neural pathwaystriggering the conducts might have been distinct. The study is proofof structural disparity in NVLD’s brain and functional disparity inthe manner the brains act around a stimuli (Henion &amp Fine, 2013).

Relevance of information to educators

The study is relevant to educators, as it will help them in theidentification of learners with NVLD. As a result, it becomes easy tocomprehend the biological disparities in children with learning andbehavior problems. Comprehension is important in helping educatorsplan instructional programs, which gratify learners’ needs. Thestudy discloses some of the behaviors that educators are likely tonotice in students with the disability. These include arithmeticproblems, slow synthesis and combining of information, lacking socialand interpersonal ability, inability to solve problems, which havenotable education implications. With such challenges, it is almostimpossible that the students will learn at the same level withchildren considered to lack learning disabilities.

Most learning curriculums in school are general. This means that itis up to the students with learning disabilities to adopt. However,as the study demonstrates, it is almost impossible for the studentsto adjust due to their difference in behavior and learning. It ispossible for the students to do well in languages because the skillsrequired are verbal (Martin, 2007). However, where nonverbal teachingis applied, then the students are incapable of concentrating, or evenunderstanding. By understanding and identifying these students, thecurriculum may focus more on verbal teaching. The programs offeredneeds to be in a manner that is easy to comprehend for the student.This does not just help learners with the disability, but is also aneffective manner of improving learning for all students.

When dealing with learners with NVLD, educators should realize that acurriculum that fails to exploit the student’s strengths and tacklelearning needs might result in withdrawn conducts by learners(Martin, 2007). Instructors review curriculum prior to planning howto teach. Because students with the learning disability will behavedifferently, the curriculum will have to target the diverse learningskills of NVLD. Employing the conclusions derived from the study,educators realize that every learner must have a functionalcurriculum, which tackles their specific needs. Additionally, apartfrom suitable academic teaching, the curriculum needs to beindividualized to integrate instruction in the social, vocational andlife skills needed to concentrate in class. The curriculum may beincluded in a learner’s individual plan of instruction.

Alternative programming is recommended for students with nonverballearning disorder. It is apparent that they do not learn at thesimilar pace with their peers, and require more adjustments in theirlearning approaches. Establishing a functioning evaluation oflearner’s skills is one way to plan what student areas need to betackled. The evaluation determines the diverse student needs, insteadof what a specific plan of programs mandates to be instructed. Theevaluation needs to be specific for every child, rather thanemploying a generalized evaluation program. Educators will useinformation from the study to derive more programs focusing on how toensure NVLD students fit in with the rest. An illustration is thealternative learning program, where students with the disorder aretaught on how to focus on their strengths in dealing with weaknesses.For instance how to employ nonverbal language in practical manners.Students may later be transitioned to the set programs (Vacca, 2001).

Educators can employ the information from the study to improve theirteaching strategies. The study ensures that educators understand whatcauses the disability and how the children behave differently. Thedifferences are used in deriving strategies to counter the challengesthat may arise when teaching NVLD. Educators need to assume an activepurpose in assisting learners acquire, advance and improve socialskills needed in interacting socially and performing averagely in allsubjects (Morris, 2002). Because students with the disability performbetter in verbal subjects, educators need to avail chances forcooperative group work in the classroom. This may be achieved throughclass arrangement into groups where students are able tospontaneously communicate. Educators may assign group work on aregular basis where the group members alternate after every groupproject (Morris, 2002). It ensures that students interact with everyclassmate. The groups facilitate the ability to assign roles tostudents. The roles are guided by instructors, which determinesexpectations learners comprehend and able to meet. Active involvementof children in framing their individual learning chances enhancesindividually vested needs, in addition to commitment to succeed.Group work is an opportunity for learners to comprehend the relevanceof whatever skills they are required to use and practice in theirlearning.

Therapeutic intervention is another teaching strategy for childrenwith NVLD. It refers to the utilization of specialized techniques toinstruct the learner basic skills to improve performance in weaksubjects (Morris, 2002). Illustrations involve problem-solvingteaching, social skills development in enhancing individual andinterpersonal abilities. The therapeutic intervention needs to beselected based on personal learner traits, like age. Theinterventions seem to be more effective on young children than onolder children (Morris, 2002). This is because young children are notat an advanced stage of their development, which makes it easy tomanipulate and change their behavior. On the contrary, older childrenhave already adapted to their behavior, which makes it difficult tochange. This does not imply that the intervention will not beeffective rather educators must exercise patience towards thechildren’s behavior. Although therapeutic intervention is a slowapproach, it has a lasting effect on the students. Learners respondslowly to the interventions, especially in cases where students areexpected to alter their conduct. For instance, the study notes thatNVLD causes children to react differently to social associations.Hence, children may become withdrawn during a class where theyrealize that they do not perform well. Slow interventions likeencouraging the student to answer questions in class, in the endbuilt the commitment to become an active participant in class.


Henion, A &amp Fine, J. (2013, Nov. 20). Shedding New Light onLearning Disorders. Michigan State University. Retrieved from light-on-learning-disorders/

Martin, M. (2007). Helping Children with Nonverbal LearningDisabilities to Flourish: A Guide for Parents and Professionals.London: Jessica Kingsley Publishers Ltd.

Morris, S. (2002). Promoting Social Skills among Children withNonverbal Learning Disabilities. Teaching Exceptional Children34(3), 66-70.

Vacca, D. M. (2001). Confronting the Puzzle of Nonverbal LearningDisabilities. Understanding Learning Differences 59(3),26-31.