A huge factor of my learning disability effected my education. Many tips helped me get through my academic years and here are my top 10.
- When somebody says something that you want to remember… repeat it to yourself three times. This is something a speech therapist taught me at the start of 5th grade. I recall the other classmates and me asking why, and she said something along the lines of, “two times is too short, and four times is too much. Three times just helps what you want to remember sit in your brain for later.” This tip has helped my short-term memory issues a lot!
- Flashcards are one of the greatest, if not the best studying tool ever! An educator brought it up when I was in middle school that flashcards could help with exams. I began making cards for any type of subjects like Language Arts or Social Studies and I began getting better grades on my exams. It also can be fun way to study! There was this game I would play where, instead of writing the term on one-side of the flashcard and the definition on the other, I would split the terms and definitions on two separate cards, write numbers on each card, then flip them over. Every time I got two cards right, I set them aside so I would not get confused. It was cool way to study and made me like studying!
- Not every teacher will know what Non-Verbal Learning Disability is. Most are willing to listen and help in any way that they can. In college, my classes became like a brick wall. Some classes were easy to wreck the wall right away. Others only left cracks. The classes with cracks, I went up to my teachers when class was over and asked any question I had. It made me more comfortable with those classes. Though, if you need to drop a class or transfer to another class, don’t be discouraged! Ask a school counselor for help! If the school needs a reason or proof, bring all the forms about NVLD that you have. My parents did that when I was in the 4th grade. I was taken out of French class because of it and placed into LRC. If I stayed in that French class, I would have failed it. Why fail when you can succeed elsewhere.
- If you can afford a tutor, get a tutor! If not, there are other ways to get help with homework and I am not talking about parents! First, I cannot rave enough about tutors and how much they helped me. Miss Randall was my LRC teacher and Math teacher in 7th and 8th grade. My parents talked to her before I entered high school and Miss Randall became my tutor all throughout high school. Having an LRC teacher as my tutor was an extra bonus. She knew my IEP goals, knew what I struggled with, and I cannot stress this enough helped me with writing, math equations, she never let me give up! With that said… throughout high school and college, there were also what was called labs at my schools. Basically, I went to a classroom, during or after school, and got help with my homework or studied for an upcoming test if I didn’t understand a question and was not seeing my tutor that evening. Sometimes, labs where only open at certain times of the day. I am extremely glad I went during those times! Besides labs, in college, I never had a tutor or paid for a tutor. Certain classes had student teachers or teacher assistants who met me after class and went over the class work with me. It depended on the class, which ones had labs or tutors. If you can afford a tutor, get a tutor or go to a lab! It was great for understanding any criteria I may have missed or was confused over.
- Other kids, but not every kid, will be in AP classes or on the honor roll. I never was and I didn’t let that bring me down! Don’t let that bring you down! Just because somebody has straight A’s or is in a tougher class than you, does not mean they are smarter than you! They just might excel in that subject a little more than you do. That’s okay! You’ll excel in other subjects that they might struggle in. Don’t let anybody bully you. In fact, the reason why people bully is because they are insecure about something in their own life. Stand up for yourself and never be discouraged!
Part 2 coming soon!
Olivia is a Project Social Ambassador from Illinois. She is a singer songwriter who was unaware of her NVLD for many years while growing up. She describes herself as an outgoing, ambitious, adventurous person who never gives up in a world of uncertainty.Share your own story