Children with reading and learning problems are at higher risk for having a variety of vision problems that can contribute to their learning challenges. Children in the classroom cumulatively spend up to four hours per day with desk work and copying, so problems that affect visual stamina can be very challenging. Unfortunately, most school or pediatrician screenings that only test for visual acuity (20/20, 20/40, etc) will miss (20/20 link) the majority of learning-related vision problems.
Most school or pediatrician screenings that only test for visual acuity will miss the majority of learning-related vision problems.
Optometric vision therapy can be very effective in improving specific visual skills which can allow children to benefit more from educational interventions. Classroom management suggestions can also provide teachers with strategies that help children compensate for visual problems in the classroom:
- Allow frequent short rest breaks during visually intensive classroom work
- Extended time to complete seat work and tests
- Encourage finger pointing during reading with younger children
- Beyond 2nd grade, encourage an underliner or cardboard window that exposes only a line or two of print at a time
- EZ reader underliner with colored plastic strip
- Increase font size
- Encourage proper reading and working distance
- Preferential seating
- Reduce handwriting and copying demands, substitute a tablet or keyboard device
- Slant board
- Integrate vision activities into Occupational Therapy
- Use 3D manipulatives for math
- Teach visual spatial concepts and language which are especially important in STEM subjects
Dr. Gallaway and Dr. Gallaway-Beckett also provide in-services for schools, child study teams, teachers, and parent groups regarding learning-related vision problems. Please contact us for details.