There may come a time in your tutoring, training, or assessment career when you must deal with a difficult learner. This could be in the form of challenging behavior or an issue with learning, so you must know what a problematic learner is and how to handle them effectively.
1. Make sure they understand what you’re saying!
Communication difficulties can be very common for those with learning disabilities. They are often unable to communicate verbally, so you can help them by using gestures, pictures, communication books, or other methods to help them communicate their thoughts and ideas.
2. Be kind and reassuring!
When a student is struggling with learning, they can become frustrated or even angry. It is important to show them that you are there to support them, but also that it is normal and expected for some students to have off days and that these will happen. This will allow them to feel more comfortable expressing their feelings and allow you to help them cope with these situations.
3. Try different approaches!
Trying different approaches with your learners is essential, as this will mean you can build a rapport with them. This means you can work together to help them overcome their problems and achieve their goals.
4. Keep a notebook and track their progress!
When dealing with a struggling learner, it’s easy to forget the little things going on behind the scenes. You might forget to check that their spelling is correct, or you might overlook a small detail in their answer that they were unsure of. By keeping a notebook, you can document these things and better understand how to support them going forward.
5. Use the child’s strengths to support their learning!
Struggling learners have many strengths that they can draw on to help them learn. These skills include attention, focus, a sense of curiosity, and a positive attitude to learning. By helping them to develop these qualities, you can help them to feel more confident and motivated in their studies.
6. Provide a quiet, private area for them to work!
Children with learning difficulties are more likely to be distracted than those with typical learning abilities, so provide them with a quiet and private area to work. This could be in their bedroom, the kitchen, or a special room set aside for them to work in.
Having a quiet place for them to work will encourage them to be more productive and will help them to feel more secure and calm. It will also encourage them to be creative and problem-solve, which are key to their learning.
7. Don’t underestimate their perseverance!
When struggling learner is working through a challenging piece of homework or studying for a test, they’ll usually get stuck and find it difficult to keep up. They will have a lot of pressure on them, and they’ll need to push themselves in order to be successful.