Self Esteem and Learning Disabilities

A Parent’s Perspective

I could see by the completed assignments coming home from school that my child was doing vast amounts of work.  In itself, this is not unusual for that’s why I sent her to The Art of Learning Academy .  But the work that she was doing was not the usual, keep the kids busy, type of work; no, the work had  quality that I’d never before seen in school assignments anywhere. There were essays on real subjects that someone could care about. There was a view of history that showed a concern for the conditions of the planet. My daughter wasn’t just learning spelling and punctuation. She was using spelling and punctuation to talk about important things, and as a by product improving all of her school skills.

While low self esteem and learning disabilities often go together, here was my daughter  feeling capable. Instead of thinking of herself as a student with problems, after some time with Alicia, she was thinking of herself as a present and future problem solver in the world.  Alicia and her staff are nurturing and supportive, which does make the students feel better about themselves, but they also treat  all the students as if they expect them to someday–soon!– be adults in positions of power, and they ask how the students will be helping others. This really lifts the students’ self-esteem beyond measure and literally obliterates the narcissism that so many so-called “normal”  teens suffer from.


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