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Educators may find this information useful in working with students who struggle academically.




LD is often described as an “invisible disability” because learning difficulties may not become obvious until a child reaches school age. Even then, the problems may be subtle and hard to recognize or be perceived as behavior or attention difficulties. Here you will find some basic information about students with learning disabilities and strategies that work to support these students.


Signs and Symptoms of LD

Strategies That Work

Technology Solutions

Useful Websites


Learning Disabilities (LD) and Attention Deficit Disorder (ADHD) affects millions of children and adults in school and in everyday life. It is a life-long condition. Fortunately, with the right understanding, support, and appropriate interventions, individuals with learning disabilities can become successful students and adults. Learning the basics about LD and ADHD is an important start to getting help. After the signs and symptoms of LD are recognized, the appropriate assessment and evaluation will be needed to determine the right strategies to help the individual.

Signs and Symptoms of LD


Students with learning disabilities can “learn how to learn,” a fact that is well-supported by research. We can put them into a position to compete and hold their own. While no single strategy works for all students, here are some proven methods for teaching most students with LD.

Successful Strategies for Teaching Students with Learning Disabilities

Reading Instruction: Tips for Teachers


Here are some technology tips for children and students of all ages who struggle with tasks that others take for granted– like reading, listening, organizing information, or writing. Technology tools help individuals reach their potential when a disability gets in the way of learning.

Technology Tools


LDA America 

Since 1963, the Learning Disabilities Association of America (LDA) has provided support to people with learning disabilities, their parents, teachers and other professionals with cutting edge information on learning disabilities, practical solutions, and a comprehensive network of resources. These services make LDA the leading resource for information on learning disabilities.  LDA-Iowa is a state affiliate of LDA.   www.ldaamerica.org

National Center for Learning Disabilities (NCLD)

Founded in 1977 as the Foundation for Children with Learning Disabilities, the organization provides leadership, public awareness and grants to support research and innovative practices in learning disabilities.  The mission of NCLD is to improve the lives of the one in five children and adults nationwide with learning and attention issues—by empowering parents and young adults, transforming schools and advocating for equal rights and opportunities. They are working to create a society in which every individual possesses the academic, social and emotional skills needed to succeed in school, at work and in life.   www.ncld.org


Understood is a comprehensive online resource for parents of children with learning and attention issues.  For the first time ever, 15 nonprofit organizations have joined forces to support parents of the one in five children with learning and attention issues throughout their journey.  With the right support, parents can help children unlock their strengths and reach their full potential. With state-of-the-art technology, personalized resources, free daily access to experts, a secure online community, practical tips and more, Understood aims to be that support.  Understood is a program of NCLD.   www.understood.org

Get Ready to Read

This is another program created by NCLD.  It has a phonological screening assessment and activities for parents/teachers to help develop pre-reading skills of phonological awareness.   www.getreadytoread.org

RTI Action Network

The RTI Action Network is dedicated to the effective implementation of Response to Intervention (RTI) in school districts nationwide. Our goal is to guide educators and families in the large-scale implementation of RTI so that each child has access to quality instruction and that struggling students – including those with learning and attention issues – are identified early and receive the necessary supports to be successful. The RTI Action Network is a program of the National Center for Learning Disabilities, funded by the Cisco Foundation and in partnership with the nation’s leading education associations and top RTI experts.  www.rtinetwork.org


Center for Applied Technology (CAST)

CAST: Universal Design for Learning is an educational research & development organization that works to expand learning opportunities for all individuals through Universal Design for Learning. CAST provides activities, resources and information for students, educators, and individuals with disabilities.   www.cast.org

LD Online

LD Online seeks to help children and adults reach their full potential by providing accurate and up-to-date information and advice about learning disabilities and ADHD. The site features hundreds of helpful articles, multimedia, monthly columns by noted experts, first person essays, children’s writing and artwork, a comprehensive resource guide, very active forums, and a Yellow Pages referral directory of professionals, schools, and products. LD OnLine is a national educational service of PBS in Washington, D.C.  www.ldonline.org

Reading Rockets

Reading Rockets is a national multimedia literacy project offering information and resources on how young kids learn to read, why so many struggle, and how caring adults can help. This is important information for parents of young children who are concerned about their child’s readiness for school. Reading Rockets is another national service provided by PBS.   www.readingrockets.org

What Works Clearinghouse (WWC)

WWC reviews the research on the different programs, products, practices, and policies in education. Then, by focusing on the results from high-quality research, they try to answer the question “What works in education?” Their goal is to provide educators with the information they need to make evidence-based decisions. www.ies.ed.gov/ncee/wwc

Power Up What Works

PowerUp offers customizable resources to improve teaching and learning for struggling students and those with disabilities. It has identified and selected technology-enhanced, evidence-based education practices with the guidance of the renowned experts who serve on the PowerUp Technical Review Committee, Expert Panels, and Advisory Committee. PowerUp focused on the content areas of reading, writing, and math due to their important role in student success and examined the Institute of Education Sciences (IES) practice guides and other highly regarded reports to identify practices that can be enhanced by technology.  www.powerupwhatworks.org

The Florida Center for Reading Research (FCRR)

FCRR is a multidisciplinary research center at Florida State University. The center explores all aspects of reading research—basic research into literacy-related skills for typically developing readers and those who struggle, studies of effective prevention and intervention, and psychometric work on formative assessment.  www.fcrr.org

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