Learning Problems

Learning problems is a worldwide phenomenon, prevalent in all cultures, races and throughout the economic and social spectrum. About 7% of all learners experience a form of learning problems. It can thus be estimated that in a school of 800 learners ±56 learners will experience a learning difficulty. About 50% of learners with a learning problem also tend to have problems with attention.

Early signs of Learning Problems
(5 symptoms are indicative)
Pre-school – 9 years (Gr. R- Gr. 3)

  • Difficulty in mastering writing skills
  • Struggles with reading and sounding
  • Reversal often occur – numerals 2,3,5,7 or 12; Letters b/d/p, m/n/v/w/u, t/j/f
  • Switching letters in words for example no/on, blue/bleu
  • Incorrect direction when writing letters and numbers (formation), for example starts b/7 from the bottom
  • Difficulty with right/left discrimination
  • Size of letters differ and confusion exists with capital/small letters
  • Spatial organization of written work is weak for example learner skip lines, spacing is poor/starts writing away from the margin
  • Perserveration/cannot start working without repeating for example m m ma ma man
  • Motor planning problems-once the learner has started, he or she cannot stop
  • Does not leave spaces between words or writes one sentence into another
  • Attention difficulties
  • Problems with sequence learning for example counting in 2’s/3’s, days of the week etcetera
  • Difficulty with word and sentence construction
  • Struggles with ball handling, hopping, criss-cross and crossing of the midline during writing activities
  • Low frustration threshold, often fights with others
  • Difficulties with spider sums
  • Emotional insecurity
  • Psycho-somatic symptoms for example does not want to go to school due to headache, stomach ache, nausea and dizziness
  • Has little motivation or perseverance