Researchers have been exploring the concepts of language disorders since the the early 1800's. The term learning disability first appeared in the work of Sam Kirk in an article in Educating Exceptional Children in1962. In 1977, students with learning disabilities were included as a category for special education through the Education for All Handicapped, or Public Law 94-142. Over the past four decades, there have been five revisions to the law(s) related to special education and volumes of research projects within the education and medical fields completed to help us better understand this group of individuals. Research has answered some questions and has created many more. The one thing that we know for sure is that even after four decades, we have a long way to go in helping people understand what a learning disability is and what it is not.
"Everyone has a story. Everyone has something that makes them unique and who they are." - Stephanie, Roadtripper from Being You
As we prepared for LD Awareness Month this year, we asked our Middle School Students if they had suggestions for what we should share. Some of their statements were for teachers, some for the general public, and some were for others students with learning differences. They all agreed that they wished people understood their world better. To honor their experiences and willingness to share, here are their snippets of their LD stories. We will also be sharing some of them through social media as part of our LD Awareness campaign this month. Join the conversation!
What should we share with people about learning disabilities or ADHD?
"It's gonna be harder [for us]."
"You see things differently... different perspectives."
"Respect your teachers so they will help you."
"Just because [we have to know this stuff]..... doesn't mean you [should] shovel work on us and watch us fail."
"[We] need more hands on & physical activities."
"Bullying should be a felony because it's defamation of character."
"Don't make fun of someone who has a disability."
"Everyone has differences."
"Don't pity me."