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Introduction

Instructional strategies are characteristically the strategies employed by an instructor in delivering information to students; whereas, learning strategies are strategies that a learner uses to interpret and comprehend information. Instructional strategies include collaborative grouping, lecturing, jig saw and think pair share while learning strategies include inquiry, discussions and use of mnemonic devices.

In most instances, students with learning disabilities are capable of learning new content and skills that are required in classrooms; however, significant achievement disparities exist between normal learners and learners with disabilities. Students with learning disabilities have difficulties in remembering critical concepts and content is challenging. As such, these challenges lead to ultimate difficulties in knowledge acquisition.

Memory challenges as a consequence of inability to use and recognize strategies for recollecting information, inadequate knowledge base for building new know knowledge and inadequate information processing capacity that hinders a student’s ability to retrieve and store information. In light of these, educators must be able to identify learning strategies aimed at supporting students indicating information processing inadequacies. As such, these strategies should be implemented effectively while teaching students on methods of utilizing them independently. Furthermore, it is critical to understand and recognize how motor, visual-perceptual and language abilities impact on information processing.

Learning strategies

In some cases, a student’s inadequate attention is the cause for memory deficits; hence students who are distracted or not fully occupied in a lesson have difficulties in recalling and storing information that they have learned. In light of this, teachers should be able to recognize inadequate attention processes; therefore, they should be able to implement strategies aimed at developing methods of student engagement or holding student’s undivided attention. Teachers of students with learning disabilities should not only be able to implement and identify learning strategies aimed at increasing student’s comprehension, but they should also teach students on the independent and effective use of these strategies (smith 2004).

In cases of student’s illustrating attention deficits, defined strategies should be instituted with the aim of developing their memory and increasing attention spans. These students gain from meaningful and engaging activities that make information be easily and readily comprehensible. Additionally, a classroom structure that is predictable and explicitly indicated instructions will be instrumental in defining student expectations.

In order to increase students’ attention, the teachers should use strategies that engage students’ learning processes such as discussions and inquiry based learning. Meanwhile, memory development can be reinforced through mnemonic devices, graphic organizers and guided notes, which aid in the retention of critical concepts. Thus, the implementation of planned activities should take into account defined learning requirements for the support of the diversified learners in a classroom (Heward, 2012).

Recognition

A child’s ability to recognize and recall develops as early as two years, which is demonstrated in nonverbal reactions to people and familiar objects. Children are capable of recognizing things that are familiar; however, they illustrate the difficulty in demonstrating or explaining the objects without encouragement. For instance, a year old child can perform a two stage process immediately after observing the processes; meanwhile, a two year old has the capacity to perform three step activities after observing such processes being performed a single time. Therefore, it is evident that an increase in the frequency of recognition and recall processes enhances a child’s cognitive abilities. Additionally, verbal and visual cues help improve the recognition process where sequential activities aid in the development of such skills. For instance, a child is given a story to read and is subsequently presented with the same story in pictorial representations; the child is then required to put the pictures in a chronological order of the story (Smith, 2004).

Knowledge acquisition

The reception of new information is evaluated on the basis of what an individual already knows; therefore, new information has the impact of reinforcing what is already known or altering a previous perception. Since the human memory is constantly evolving, the representation of events and knowledge in the human mind is vague and simple making it easy to recollect. Therefore, explicit recollection of information requires intricate information processing strategies and skills (Heward, 2012). Therefore, a child’s ability to classify learned information with related knowledge is critical.

As a result, when this is accomplished, students are able to perceive the connections existing between past concepts and new information that is being assimilated; therefore, the creation of a more elaborate knowledge base and comprehension is enhanced simultaneously. In light of this, teachers should be able to implement strategies that stimulate knowledge acquired in the past when they are being presented with new information. In so doing, learners are able to categorize events and concepts; hence journal logs and graphical representations are among the ways in which students are aided to categorize and organize new information. These also include deriving connections when reading new interrelated materials and texts (Smith, 2004).

Language Skills and Information Processing

Deficiencies in information processing among students are not limited to failure of effective learning initiatives; however, other factors such as delays in language, motor and visual-perceptual skills are among the impeding factors. These factors are instrumental in a student’s inability to process or acquire new information, demonstrate comprehension to teachers or failure to recall previously acquired knowledge (Smith, 2004).  In light of this, teachers should appreciate the significance of the sequential order in which a student’s visual-perceptual skills develop. This ensures that students are presented new information at appropriate and optimal times to ensure comprehensive assimilation of the information.

However, it can be significantly challenging to identify visual perceptual interruptions in pre-school aged children since the fundamental perceptual skills of space and form develop earlier in life (smith, 2004). Learners illustrating delayed motor coordination have demonstrated challenges in activities such as stacking blocks, assembling puzzles and illustrating people or objects. Persistent delays gross and fine motor skills can impact later academic developments such as hand writings, defined classes such as physical and art education (Heward, 2012). While motor skills improve as a child grows, these challenges persist to adulthood for LD students; these mitigate their challenges through the use of tools such as voice recording and recognition software (Smith, 2004).

Since words illustrate or symbolize ideas and concepts, delayed language processing impacts on comprehension, listening, problem solving, social skills and speaking. In light of this, students with learning disabilities do not achieve language processing standards in the same manner and speed as those illustrated by other typical learners. While the student’s illustrating learning disabilities assimilate knowledge in a similar order to that of typical students, they do so at a significantly slow pace. As a result, such delays have the potential to cause challenges in advanced language and grammatical understanding. Therefore, parents and teachers have the responsibility to monitor a child’s language development in an effort to determine the existence of language delays and its impacts on related processing delays.

Conclusion

Educators have the obligation to facilitate students with learning disabilities adequate support required for their academic success. These include the identification and implementation of learning initiatives aimed at making learning content significantly comprehensible. Once these initiatives are identified, educators have the responsibility to instruct their students on how to utilize such initiatives in independent capacities; these reinforce a student’s retention, attention, memory knowledge processing and acquisition. These are critical to a student’s learning processes, as such, any observed or identified deficiencies should be provided with adequate mitigating support. Moreover, the identification of motor, visual-perceptual and language skills relating to the processing and retention of information will aid in illustrating developmental delay areas for support.

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