Content Review Learners with Mild Disabilities

Content Review: Learners with Mild Disabilities

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Content Review: Learners with Mild Disabilities


The book, “learners with Mild Disabilities” by Raymond and Eileen (2017) helps to demonstrate the strengths and needs of learners with disabilities. The illustrations include evaluation of cognitive, language, academic learning, and social or emotional characteristics that they have problems with. This paper summarizes the authors’ work outlining the main arguments and the central teachings while giving opinions on the same.

1. Issues in Assessment and Identification (Chapter 2)

This chapter sorts to identify what are the IDEA assessment and its requirements. In the book, there is an illustration of a student, Jeffrey, who is described to be very active. Still, with some troubling behaviors that worry his teacher, Mrs. Greener, she decides to fill out a unique education referral form from the office to seek further guidance in evaluating if Jeffrey might have a disability. The signs that this kid’s performance is significantly lower than that of his classmates, with problems in reading, shouting in class, and disturbing his peers, contribute to the teacher’s thought that he might have disabilities.

After direct observation by the special needs education teacher, the multidisciplinary team found that Jeffrey delayed acquiring essential academic skills, specifically reading. However, that is not enough evidence to conclude that he has learning problems. His behaviors were seen to be the same as other students, and they could not place him as a person with the disorder. Mandates are stipulated in IDEA 2004 to ensure that all kids in state and district assessments participated. The purpose of the requirements is to ensure that the tests measure progress and skills instead of measuring results of a learner with disability.

The educators are to use the information for different purposes: classifying if the student has a disability, Diagnosis the impact of a child’s disability, For formative evaluation of the learning activities’ growth which forms the basis for determining the effectiveness of the learning activities, and for concluding the assessment of the progress in making decisions about a student’s such as if the learner has demonstrated sufficient primary skills to move to a different level of academics or grade. Defining disability remains debatable, and change is open too, as the possible uneven implementation.

2. Issues in Instruction and Placement (Chapter 3)

The problem that most teacher face is identifying and making decisions that a student has a learning disability. The chapter talks about how the IDEA plans were about having a good assessment process to determine accommodations needed to help an individual improve in following instructions in an academic environment.

The main issue is that teachers face challenges in instructing kids with learning disabilities that confront them in school districts. Other learners as well when it comes to learning disabilities in a classroom environment, so it’s necessary to place these students in special needs kids where they would receive special attention. Disability labels can make a student decline instructions given to them, and these students might have stigmatized and persuaded false stereotypes that they cannot follow instructions like their peers. The IDEA data shows that students with intellectual disabilities and multiple disabilities participating in general language classes with peers without disabilities are rates far below other populations. To map the issues in instruction and placement, it was discovered that students in urban districts spent less time in general education classrooms than those in rural. Neighborhoods with the largest enrollments placed proportionately fewer students in available education settings.

The recommendations for solving the issues of instruction following are the placement of students with significant disabilities in separate classes and the prevalent setting for students with intellectual and other disabilities in a special education classroom as well. There were issues of disproportionate placement across racial and ethnic groups that forced IDEA regulations to be amended in January 2017 to promote equity in education by ensuring all students with disability are adequately identified for services and are not disproportionately removed from educational placements by disciplinary removals and restrictive placements.

3. Learners with Learning Disabilities (Chapter 5)

The chapter provides more information on how the concepts of disability developed. The definition of learning disability is defined as a time when students lack the cognitive strategies needed for learning. To name students with disability, teachers should refer to these students with a presentable term that parents in acquiring educational series for their children cannot feel ashamed off.

The IDEA guidelines are that students with a learning disability must receive a nondiscriminatory evaluation using many sources of reliable and valid information. There are similarities in various provided concepts on what constitutes a learning disability because all images have similar operations. Learning disabilities are characterized by their heterogeneity, and students are different with a disability or without.

People must understand that the development of a learning disability involves skills related to cognitive processes that start early in a kid’s life and are central to affecting academic success later in life. This chapter has noted that thinking disorder affects a learner’s ability to solve theoretical and energy problems. Students with learning disabilities have been found to have difficulty developing conceptual knowledge and storing and retrieving information in long-term memory. The inability to remember affects memory skills, visual and auditory, that are important in reading, language, and mathematical performance. Therefore, we can conclude from this chapter that memory disorder attributes to problems in storing information, and retrieving it on demand affects students.

The content of this chapter has good information about speculation theories that abound about the causes of learning disabilities. However, I found it necessary for further studies to determine the actual intrinsic causes of brain differences between learners with learning disabilities and those without.

4. Learners with Emotional or Behavioral Disorders (Chapter 6)

The chapter focuses more on the learner and reflects on the nature of the disability, that is, the emotions and behavior disorder. The disability of this kid is unsatisfying and not socially acceptable to the point this student’s feelings and social growth are affected.

Learners with emotional handicaps display them in transient, temporary, and intensive types of behavior. Students with emotional disturbance have been found to have various issues, such as the inability to learn, which intellectual or health factors cannot explain. These students cannot build or maintain peaceful interpersonal relationships with peers and teachers and have abnormal behaviors under normal circumstances. They are found to have a general mood of unhappiness and sometimes depression and a tendency to have fear associated with personal problems. These behaviors are enough to call for help services to the kids. The IDEA policies are students are eligible for assistance for emotional disorders only when their school performance is affected.

My counter-argument is that eligibility to acquire services calls for multiple data sources. The assessment process includes observation and information from parents, teachers, and students. It is okay to say that factors associated with emotional disorders are challenging to identify. Several group factors may be involved in their emotions; biological factors like brain injury and genetic predisposition, family factors, and the student’s school and other environmental features.

Emotional or behavior disorders are classified into two groups: external behaviors and internal. School programs for learners with an emotional or behavioral disorder, conduct disorder, and anxiety withdrawal dysphonia are conditions identified. Special education departments in the states should develop specific interventions to respond to an individual child’s behavior challenges appropriately.

5. Learners with Difficulties in Attention, Communication, and Physical and Sensory Functioning (Chapter 7)

The new generation of teachers faces many disorders in programs for students with mild disabilities. Classifying learners as having problems with difficulties in attention, communication, and other conditions, the diagnostic criteria for attention found that this learner has symptoms such as: Mostly the students fail to give attention to given instructions or doesn’t perform tasks carelessly in schoolwork or other activities, their experience difficulties in sustaining attention in play activities and ignore what they are being told directly.

Some ways to identify learners with ADHD include one-on-one interviews with their parents, teachers, and students and observing and examining their behaviors. Reading through the chapter, I learned that students with ADHD display many other characteristics, some of which are predominantly inattentive. Others are said to be grouped by hyperactivity ad impulsivity. All this varies by age and affects students’ school performance and social relationships.

There is no difference between ADHD and IDEA identification of this kind of disability. However, the specific placements depend on the learner’s primary presenting symptoms. Reflecting on how the teachers handled this student in a general education setup, they gave support. The conditions identified to affect their performance are; physical and health disabilities, visual and hearing impairments, and communication and sensory dis-functioning. But research has shown that with better accommodations filled with strengths and needs; these learners can improve how they take their education curriculum.

After reading through the chapter it becomes apparent that conditions of disabilities have been integrally intertwined from time immemorial to this time. However, students with ADHD have medically defined condition close to attention, communication and other sensory problems. To help students with this kind of disorder, the intervention for medical and behavior serve as the best option.

6. Learners with Autism Spectrum Disorders (Chapter 8)

In a simple definition, Autism spectrum disorder (ASD) is a developmental disability caused by variations in the brain. Students with ASD mostly have difficulties with social communication and interactions. The collection of disorders is within the pervasive development. Examples of this disorder are autistic disorder, Asperger’s, and other impacts. The symptoms of people with ASD are having difficulty with social communication. Autism disorder affects both verbal and non-verbal communications especially before 3 years of age. Students with autism engage in repetitive activities and have a resistance to change in daily route in behavior; they also have unusual sensory experience.

The authors state that ASDs cause a decline in academic performance. The activities involve development testing, observing, interviewing, and rating to assess the disorders. In comparison with other conditions, Autism is an incidence disability. The studies show that students with this disorder spend time in the general education environment. Half of these students fall below 70% on the IQs scale. Nevertheless, the data has increasingly raised many questions and worries. Recent findings reveal that autism disorder is correlated to biological and genetic basis. One of the theories examined is unresponsive parenting, specifically, “refrigerator mothers,” After tests, the reaction to vaccines is the cause.

The outstanding characteristics of these people are that communication disorders are many and varied. The learners have a deficit in functional or pragmatic use of language. These learners keep repeating things and show restrictive behaviors though they are diverse. The students tend to show interest in specific topics, and sometimes they may talk about them all day. This disorder is different from others as it may affect school performance positively or negatively. It depends on adaptive behavior.

7. Cognitive and Perceptual Characteristics (Chapter 9)

This chapter’s main aim is to help readers understand students with mild disabilities’ difficulties in school learning environments. The chapter’s content helps consider the complex cognitive processes that occur in students’ minds during and after a specific learning event. The chapter analysis processes the majority of learners use to incorporate a new piece of information into their understanding. After that, the difference between mildly disabled students and typical ones concerning their cognitive functioning is conceptualized. The findings prove that learning theory is an active process. The process results in lasting changes within a learner’s knowledge base, leading to stable behavior changes.

The authors have viewed the constructs view learning and cognitive functioning from a developmental angle. The argument agrees that learners encounter discrepant information and use the processes of assimilation and environment to incorporate the data according to how they recognize or understand it, concluding that teachers and mentors significantly impact the process. The students are seen to depend on the environment in making decisions from their perceptions point of view, called “Impulsivity” or “reflectivity.”

The study also looks at the information processing frameworks that have been found to provide an integral theory of cognitive function. The executive functions coordinate both the structural components and the long-term memory. Attention has three mini-functions, coming to watch, selective attention, and sustained attention. The characteristic of perception is that it attaches an identity and meaning to stimuli before signaling the two working memory. The executive functions coordinate all the processes mentioned above bad their events. The deficiency of the methods causes students with mild disabilities to exhibit various cognitive functioning issues, leading to problems in school achievement. The notable difference between students with mild disabilities is that calm students develop cognitively more slowly. The slowness makes it easier for teachers to identify this learner’s cognitive strengths and needs and can provide support and effective remediation.

8. Language Characteristics (Chapter 10)

Scholars define language as any code employing signs, symbols, or gestures to communicate ideas clearly between people. To acquire knowledge easily, a student must have good language characteristics. The language characteristics are the significant problems with age reading, spelling, and writing difficulties. The mildly disabled students have difficulty reading written words without hesitating. The disorder doesn’t make a learner dumb; some are average to superior intelligence. Other effects of language characteristics (dyslexia) are that it affects decoding, reading, recalling, writing, and also speech.

The function of language characteristic mainly is communication, the expression, play function, students having imagination expressions, and also emotional release. Language characteristics cannot be underestimated because it determines success in learning, mainly on a student’s ability to process information efficiently in direct conversation or writing. Language is vital because it utilizes two channels, listening and reading, against speaking and writing behaviors.

With the outlined language characteristics above, a student with a mild disability has problems either with language, which affects their ability to learn. Psychologists have proven that every student has a unique profile of skills and shortages, but language problems play a big part in a young one’s ability to learn well. A research gap exists in which a learner’s problems are because of language differences or disability, or maybe a combination of the two.

This chapter concludes that learners affected by language differences are those whose first tongue is different from the language of instruction, which eventually affects school performance. Learners with such disabilities have problems understanding linguistic information in any other language. They have difficulties in understanding complex directions. When in normal classroom environment with other students without disability, these children have a different way of responding, for example, they will omit given instructions, unable to understand and respond to teachers and other language problems of speech as well.

9. Academic Learning Characteristics (Chapter 11)

According to the authors of this book, learning is a process by which a student’s behavior cannot be explained by maturity, worth, or age but by experience and regular practices. Mild students acquire learning by observing the behavior of other students by their direct consequences. Meanwhile, academic learning characteristic to my understanding consists of students able to have logic, constructing objectives, has insight and able to an apply learning practically.

When it comes to academic learning, students with mild disabilities tend to move through many stages slower and require support to achieve every stage goal. These learners have a problem understanding taught information essential to academic success. Students mostly have a problem with solving mathematical quizzes, analysis and explanation of difficult statements.

Academic learning success calls for close attention and giving special needs teaching by teachers with assuming control, direction, and monitoring of learning progress. The author acknowledges that motivation also plays an essential role in human beings. Extrinsic motivation is said to either reward or punish. Reason depends on what someone needs and drives him, like the urge for competence, control, or relatedness. As stated in the book, students have different perceptions of their capabilities to dictate learning outcomes. Others’ effect is by luck or as a result of other people they cannot control has been referred to as “an external locus of control.”

When special educators understand the importance of learner characteristics, they can unlock mild students to be more efficient and effective in their learning. It also encourages teachers to be more precise in handling soft disability students. To conclude, it’s no doubt that learner characteristics are effective in that they range from student to academic performance.

10. Social–Emotional Characteristics (Chapter 12)

The social-emotional characteristic is the experiences, expression, and management of emotions a child’s faces and the capacity to provide a positive relationship with peers. The main features of emotional characteristics are the ability to identify and understand personal feelings and keenly read and understand the emotional states of others. The child can manage strong emotions and the expression that arises in a way that they can control their behavior.

From the book, the author recommends that this social-emotions characteristic can be studied from development and ecological angles. The given theory proposes that human behavior develops as the result of social struggles like trust that must be addressed and solved for the sake of healthy adaptation occurrence. Our emotions portray and communicate what we find necessary or less.

Emotions are said to develop with time and provide clues to a person’s development as a social person. The reference author, Selman, argues that the ability to take another person’s perspective also develops just like emotions grow. The content is also broadly researched, with social intelligence defined and the sample outlined as social awareness and skill—the outline related emotional competence to personality characteristics.

Maladaptive behaviors are also seen in some students with disabilities, some of which are restricted to those with emotional disorders. Some learners are aggressive and have disturbance behaviors. The particular concerns related to the management of students with challenging behaviors. The recommendations of IDEA law require that a functional behavioral assessment be part of the planning for any student with any disorder who presents behavioral problems; those behavior issues must then be given close attention in the planning and placement process.

11. Serving Students Who Have Specific Learning Disabilities Along with Other Exceptionalities

All Students with learning disabilities deserve proper care, and I believe this child has a chance to learn best in inclusive environments that provide high-quality instruction. Teachers and parents are responsible for accessing and providing appropriate academic support services and ensuring that special needs students are assigned to definite special education groups.

For students with mild disabilities, the aim should be to provide the key to success in the school environment where they can have appropriate accommodations and modifications made to the instruction and place them to participate in classroom activities just like typical students. Due to poor decision-making, educators can adapt simple techniques such as moving distractible students to the front of the class or away from the window or door. Other modifications may involve changing how the material is presented or how students respond to show their learning.

Further alternatives might be to come up with categorical labeling that reflects modern approaches to service delivery to these mid disabled students. I believe that effective education for students can be accomplished with alternative systems that incorporate facts-based academic intensive interventions. Schools should also look forward to employing more psychologists because they play essential roles in implementing these special needs models.

To conclude, serving these students needs passion and love. Having power as educators will lead to being creative in planning lessons that will accommodate every child. For example, the teacher may decide to modify the learning plan. Modifying lesson plans means changing what is being taught to the student or even exceptions—making class activities easier for those with mild disabilities so that the student can feel better and improve their confidence.

12. Final Reflection

Sometimes all the mild students need is changes in the class routines. One of my opinions on providing better services is through adapting instruction. This instruction includes scheduling, and the teacher can give the mild students extra time to complete assignments or break up testing over several days. They are also setting where teachers try to work with a small group and work face-to-face with students.

A teacher should also focus on praising effort, not the outcome. Teachers should remember that students with mild disabilities cannot always attain high grades. Teachers must explain to them that exceptional students’ effort and hard work are more than results. Appreciating their efforts boost morale and can prepare them to transition to higher learning and careers after graduation from the school system.

There are solutions for helping children with mild disabilities, and you need to implement them. Educators should try as much as possible to discover the talents of these soft students’. The advantages of learning gifts will help them avoid many unpleasant situations at school and support approaches.


Raymond, E. B. (2017). Learners with mild disabilities: A characteristics approach. Pearson.