Step 2: Recognize the skills necessary for fast and efficient learning:
(...see Step 1)
What skills does your child need to develop in order to learn easily?
In the model below, the lower section is called the active processing system
which represents what the mind is occupied with at any given time. The upper
section represents additional mental skills that are available to be used
and interact with any incoming information.
The active processing system includes attention and working memory (the
ability to retain information until it is further analyzed). It is the work
center. As incoming information is processed, other mental skills come into
play and interact with it.
For example, long-term memory is used to compare incoming information with
past experiences so that we can determine if it is new, old, or a
modification of information we have stored in the past.
The degree to which all these individual mental skills are developed and the
efficiency with which they work and integrate with each other, factor
heavily into the overall ability of the processing system to handle
information accurately, quickly, and efficiently.
PLEASE NOTE: Studies point out that only 10 to 15 percent of learning
difficulties are due to input or output problems and approximately 85-90
percent are due to poor processing skills. Letís examine this system more
How deficient skills affect specific learning tasks
Although our learning system is far more complex than I have described in
this model, the model is helpful in describing how deficiencies in any of
these skills will affect learning. Mental skill Results if poorly developed
Attention the ability to stay on a task for long periods of time or ignore
distractions will limit learning.
Working memory cannot retain information long enough to properly handle that
Processing speed information may be lost before it can be used, requiring
the student to start all over again.
Visual processing tasks that require seeing in your head (math word problems
and comprehension) will suffer.
Long-term memory wrong conclusions and answers will result.
Auditory processing sounding out words when reading or spelling will be very
Reasoning and logic problem solving, math, and comprehension will be poor.
Comprehension making sense of new information will suffer.
It is also important to note that these skills do not work individually.
Most work on every input, so the strength or weakness of one skill affects
the effectiveness of other skills.
For example, reading comprehension is dependent on many skills, including;
the ability to create mental pictures and images, attend to what is read,
and the fluidity of reading (which itself is dependent upon the auditory
Yes, learning is a complex process...
However, by evaluating these underlying mental skills, it is possible for us
to determine the real causes of learning difficulties and what skills need
to be improved to make learning far better.
Let's look at how we do that by looking first at testing and then at
Step 1 l
Step 2 l
Step 3 l
Step 4 l
Step 5 l