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    No one knows your child like you do…

    No one knows your child like you do. If something seems amiss, trust your instincts and observations.  You may then want to read up on developmental milestones to ensure that your child has acquired age appropriate skills and reached the milestones at the right time.

    The following are some difficulties or red flags that you may want to look out, and consider to bring your child for an evaluation.

    Early Childhood

    • Fine motor skills are slow to develop –  poor pincer grip, holds the pencil awkwardly
    • Walks later than peers
    • Speaks later than peers
    • Problems with pronunciation
    • Distracted easily, only able to sit and engage in tasks briefly
    • Slow in picking up literacy skills
    • Problems with following routines, or resistance to changes in routines
    • Sensitive to sounds and touch
    • Prefers to play alone, avoids contact with others
    • Plays with a narrow range of toys, engages in limited activities

    Formal School Years

    • Untidy or inconsistent sized handwriting
    • Clumsy –  falls easily, cannot balance well, avoids physical or outdoor play
    • Confuses over sounding similar-looking words
    • Difficulty learning the connection between letters and sounds – letter blending
    • Problems with learning spelling and reading
    • Making spelling and reading errors, including letter reversal, inversions, and transportations.
    • Difficulty retaining information, poor memory skills
    • Difficulty grasping concepts
    • Difficulty with word problems, answering open-ended or inferential questions
    • Difficulty making or retaining friends
    • Difficulty understanding facial expressions or body language
    • Poor organisation skills – misplacing personal items, making careless mistakes in work
    • Avoids reading or written homework
    • Takes a long time or needs a lot of reminders/prompts to complete work
    • Pays little attention or oblivious to details
    • Concerns with acceptance issues – low self-esteem, self-confidence, self-image.
    • Destructive behaviours – defiant, school refusal
    • Transition difficulties – difficulty adjusting to new settings
    • Academic underachievement – failing or borderline marks
    A psychological assessment may be needed for some children if they are underperforming in school.

    What should a parent do?

    Speak with your child’s teacher, and get the school’s allied educator or learning support on board.  You may also want to arrange for a comprehensive evaluation of your child’s difficulties.  Before you can solve your child’s challenges, you will need to know what you are dealing with.  An evaluation will allow for the provision of support once your child’s challenges are identified and understood, areas of strengths and weakness are identified, and with our recommendations, you will then be able to decide upon the best course of action to help your child.  Accommodations can then be put in place to help your child learn and develop.

    Written by Ms Sharon Lam

    Child Psychologist