It’s common for children who have language delays to have memory issues as well. I remember sitting countless hours with my son going over material for school, only to find that by the next morning it was if we had never gone over the material. Unfortunately, there were always teachers who never really believed we had spent an entire evening trying to remember endless terms and facts.
In reality, trying to cram in a meaningless jumble of facts is an activity doomed to fail from the start. That’s because children with language delays are generally spatial thinkers: they need to see the big picture of whatever topic they are learning from the start, filling in the details afterwards. Unfortunately, often the exact opposite takes place: children are given a topic, then presented with numerous facts and details relating to that topic.
However, by capitalizing on your child’s strong visual skills and by organizing the material to be studied from general to specific, you can double or even triple the amount of material your child retains- and get it all done in a lot less time. Here are 7 tips on how exactly you can help your child remember more of what he learns in school:
1) Use diagrams to help your child see the big picture.
The key to making this work is to use more than one chart to illustrate key points. For example, if your child is learning about the desert, the first chart would only list main points like wildlife, plants, and weather.
Rather than filling in more specific points about wildlife, plants and weather on the same chart, you would save all that information for different charts. So the second chart would only list wildlife, but you would write the general categories that apply, like survival methods, food, etc. The third chart would also be on wildlife, and would go into even more detail.
You can also use the site classtools.net to make games, diagram, quizzes, and interactive activities that will also help you keep a reluctant learner engaged.
2) Use pictures to get the idea across.
There’s a reason for the expression “a picture is worth a thousand words.” Instead of insisting that your child read over and over again a meaningless (to him) jumble of words, have him draw a picture of the key points instead. Click here for a good explanation (with pictures) of how to do this.
3) Review the material in shorter bursts, rather than one long marathon session.
Studies show that students remember material better if they learn for shorter periods of time, taking breaks between. You can help your child make that break time even more effective with vigorous exercise, which has been shown to dramatically increase the scores of students.
Even with all of your help, your child might still not do as well as he or she would like. Make sure your child understands that the best victory is with one’s self. If he can beat his best score, then he really is a winner.