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How can I support my preteen if they are struggling with academic or learning difficulties?

Hi everyone,

I am a parent of a preteen who is struggling with academic and learning difficulties. My child is having a hard time keeping up with their schoolwork and often feels discouraged and frustrated. As a parent, I want to support my child and help them overcome their challenges, but I am not sure where to begin.

I have tried talking to their teachers to understand their specific learning needs and have also considered getting them extra tutoring sessions. But I want to do more and would love to hear from other parents or educators who have gone through similar experiences.

Have you ever had a preteen who faced academic or learning difficulties? What steps did you take to support them? Were there any strategies or resources that you found particularly helpful? Any advice or suggestions would be greatly appreciated!

All Replies


Hey there,

I can completely relate to your concern about your preteen child who is struggling with academic and learning difficulties. My son went through a similar challenge, which was a tough phase for him and for me as a parent. What worked for us was identifying the underlying cause of his difficulties and finding the resources that could help us.

Here are a few strategies that worked for us:

1. Spend more time in independent reading: We realized that my son was struggling with understanding the contents of his reading. Hence, we decided to spend more time in independent reading. I created an environment at home that encouraged reading books that interest him.

2. Play educational games: We engaged in educational games, which helped him with word recognition, problem-solving, and reasoning skills. Through games, we helped him learn new concepts such as math and everyday skills such as memory retention.

3. Find a positive environment: The environment at school was a bit discouraging, so we tried to create a positive and motivating environment at home. We adopted the switchoff times for gadgets, got involved in sports, and encouraged him to participate in extracurricular activities.

4. Physical exercise: Physical exercise is essential for mental and academic development. A healthy body and mind help with better attention span and focus.

5. Affirm your child's progress: Positive feedback will help in instilling confidence, self-esteem, and motivation. Praise and offer rewards for academic achievements.

It is crucial to get a diagnosis of the cause of academic difficulties in children. This can be achieved through the school's evaluation or seeing a specialist. Remember to support and encourage your preteen child without putting undue pressure on them. It is okay to fail sometimes, but it is not okay to give up.


Hi there,

I can totally relate to your situation. My preteen child also faced academic and learning difficulties a couple of years ago. It was a challenging time for both of us and made me feel overwhelmed and distressed. But with time and some support, we were able to overcome these struggles.

Here are a few things that worked for us:

1. Consistent communication with teachers: It is crucial to keep in touch with your child's teachers to understand their academic challenges, their progress, and how you can support them.

2. Identify problem areas: Try and identify the areas that your child is struggling with the most. It could be a particular subject or topic. Once you have identified the problem areas, you can work on addressing them.

3. Get extra help: We sought the help of an experienced tutor who could provide personalized attention and focus on specific areas where my child needed more support.

4. Encourage and praise progress: It's essential to acknowledge and appreciate every small achievement that your child makes. Positive reinforcement can help boost their confidence and help them stay motivated.

5. Be patient and understanding: As parents, it's easy to get frustrated or impatient when our children struggle with academics. But it's important to remain calm, patient and be supportive of their efforts.

I hope these tips help, and I wish you and your child all the best. Remember, with the right support and strategy, your child can overcome these challenges and succeed in their academic pursuits.


Hello everyone,

I have a preteen daughter who was also experiencing academic and learning difficulties some years back. I understand how challenging this situation can be as a parent. In my experience, seeking professional advice from a specialist is a crucial step.

Here are some strategies that worked for us:

1. Professional Help: I reached out to a specialist to evaluate my daughter's learning abilities. They were able to diagnose her with dyslexia and offered specific strategies that could help her overcome her challenges.

2. Individualized learning plan: After we received a diagnosis, we created an individualized learning plan with the specialist. This plan specified the areas where my daughter needed extra support and the best approach to teaching her.

3. Use assistive technologies: There are assistive technologies which can help children with learning difficulties to work with ease. They include text-to-speech software, which read books and sources for them to help understand information effectively.

4. Setbacks are normal: It's perfectly normal to have setbacks during the learning process. It is important to offer emotional support and encouragement to your child whenever they go through these setbacks.

5. Celebrate achievements: As insignificant as they may seem, it's essential to celebrate the little achievements made by your preteen. This helps boost their self-esteem and encourages them to keep pushing themselves.

Remember, every child is different with their unique strengths and weaknesses. Provide constant emotional support and encouragement in their academic development.


Hi everyone,

As a parent of a preteen, seeing your child struggle with academic and learning difficulties can be disheartening. My daughter also went through a similar predicament. She couldn't keep up with her homework, and it was affecting her grades.

Here are a few strategies that worked for us:

1. Identify areas that need improvement: Identifying the areas that your child is struggling with is a crucial step. Make a list of their weaknesses and strengths, and then create a plan to work on them.

2. Create a comfortable study environment: Children need a comfortable space where they can concentrate and work on their homework without distractions. You can create a good study environment for your child by reducing clutter and noise in their study space.

3. Create incentives: Incentives can act as motivators for children to improve their academic performance. For instance, you can promise to buy them a gift or plan a fun activity as a reward for their academic achievements.

4. Use technology: The internet has provided numerous resources that can help with academic and learning difficulties. Make use of educational apps and interactive learning software to simplify complex subjects.

5. Celebrate milestones: Celebrate your child's achievements, no matter how small. Highlighting the positive developments, such as improvements in their grades, can improve their self-worth.

Lastly, be patient and don't put too much pressure on your child. Children can sense when tensions are high, and it can affect their self-esteem. With love, support, and a bit of patience, your preteen can overcome their academic challenges.


Hi everyone,

I can understand how challenging it is as a parent to watch your preteen child struggle with academic and learning difficulties. I can relate to this situation from personal experience. My daughter also had difficulties while in her preteen years.

Here are a few strategies that worked for us:

1. Collaborate with the school: Our child went to a public school, and working together with her teacher helped us understand better her academic challenges. Collaborating with the teacher gave us a better perspective of our child's academic weaknesses and how we could help address them.

2. Create a routine: We created a simple routine for our daughter that included study times, homework time, and breaks. The routine helped establish a study habit and allowed for a balanced study time.

3. Use visual aids: Our daughter had difficulty understanding textual information, so we made use of visual aids to make learning more comfortable for her. The visual aid materials included charts, diagrams, and graphs, which helped make lessons in school more manageable.

4. Teach coping mechanisms: Preteens go through a lot of changes both physically and emotionally, and these can affect their academic performance. Teaching your child coping mechanisms, such as deep breathing exercises and relaxation techniques, helps them to manage stress and improve their concentration.

5. Positivity: It is crucial to maintain a positive attitude towards your child's academic challenges. It helps to encourage optimism that will make it easy for your preteen to achieve their academic goals.

Finally, it's important to remember that every child has unique academic challenges. Embrace and love your child for who they are, and with perseverance, attention, and care, they too can overcome their academic difficulties.

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