High School Students Problems and Solutions

Challenges Facing High School Students with Thinking and Learning Differences

Transitioning from middle schools to high schools can be extremely stressful for all students. Expectations in their studies increase, extracurricular and socializing activities become more crucial, particularly if your student is proceeding to college or university.

Most of the expectations might result in unique challenges for children with education as well as thinking differences. Here are the major challenges that high schoolers face.

Age Differences and Bigger School

Challenges Faced by Students in SchoolOne major challenge that high school learners face is adjusting to their new studying environment. High schools are likely to be larger and have many learners compared to middles schools. Even though your teen might have practiced shifting classrooms between middle school classes, navigating larger schools can be extremely challenging.

Your teens will not have to keep time and know the best path between classrooms, but they might have to organize trips to get materials from their lockers as well. High schools usually utilize schedules that differ each day. For learners struggling with visual processing or executive function issues, this kind of navigation and planning can be challenging.

Also, there is a change in classroom makeup. Teens in middle schools have different educators for different subjects. These students were perhaps in class with other learners in the same grade. In high school, classes are most likely to have learners from various grade levels.

Differences in age might be tricky for students struggling with social skills or those who are not matured like their colleagues. Students might be exposed to behaviors that are risky in ways they were not before and feel pressure in order to fit in.

This can be challenging for teens with Attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD). It is difficult to get used to learners who have difficulties in self-advocating or following social cues. Educating students on ways of dealing with groups can assist.

Study and Time Management Skills

High school students struggle to stay organized and ensure that everything is done correctly. Thinking and learning differences might lead to trouble in regard to time management. You can assist students in learning how to manage their assignments in order to keep them on track.

Classwork can be challenging for learners who usually struggle with taking notes. Some learners might not be sure of what they are supposed to note down. Besides, they might struggle to keep up with what their instructors are saying. Note-taking techniques and note-taking applications can assist.

With many tests, students require to possess strong learning skills. Students might have tasks in various classes with similar deadlines. You can assist them in breaking long-term projects into smaller, more manageable parts. Also, you can show students how to utilize day planners or look for applications to assist in keeping organized.

It is crucial to learn strategies to prepare for exams and attempt learning in ways that complement their education strengths. You can create a homework agreement with your teens if they battle with their homework.


Self-advocacy is a great focus for students with thinking and learning differences in high school. As expectations of being independent students increase, students will be necessitated to begin playing greater roles in their academics.

If students have an individualized education program (IEP), it is a good idea and law. They have to begin taking part in meetings and have input into their shift plan. Also, you can seek to have self-advocacy objectives in their IEP.

Speaking about the needs of learners, seeking assistance, and asking questions are crucial. Students might be expected to discuss and understand their learning differences and begin looking for accommodation that they want. However, this can overwhelm some learners. It is vital to assist your students in finding ways of self-advocating that enable them to feel comfortable.

School-Life Balance

Home activities make it hard for students to be ahead of things. This is common when students have executive functioning problems. School and homes are the best ways of making friends. Also, they are the best way your teens can explore their passions and find things that they love doing. Bust since they consume time, activities and tasks can make it difficult to ensure that everything is done. This is a reason that makes some high school students avoid doing assignments that are challenging.

You should talk to your students regarding ways of balancing school work. It seems like a lot for them; they might require to volunteer rather. And if you are not sure whether they are ready for studies, you can start by working on work readiness skills at home.

More Ways of Assisting Your High-Schoolers

Personal Challenges in Life as a StudentIf your teens have individualized education programs (IEPs), ensure that they have a shift plan. Also, you might need to motivate them and their educators prior to the beginning of school.

It might take several days for your teens to adapt to high school. Also, it might take many days for you to get used to having your teenagers in high school. High schools might not Knowle parents more like you are used to, or you would like. There might be various rules compared to those in middle school. Policies relating to lateness, absences, and electronic use might be followed more strictly.

That is why it is crucial to know how to contract teachers of your teens. You can download and fill out a contact form and look for examples of effective emails to educators. You should explore conversation starters to utilize with instructors. Look for specific ways to communicate to educators regarding thinking and learning differences.

High school might be an exciting but difficult time. By staying connected with your teens and instructors, you assist them in overcoming challenges and help them to succeed in their studies.

How Do Learning Differences Make Online High School More Difficult?

The answer is simple. Online high school is not what it seems to be for many high school students with learning differences like ADHD.

The biggest misconception about online high school is that it’s just an advanced form of homeschooling. Perhaps, for some teens who learn very well using computers or laptops and being at home without the distractions of other teenagers, this can work. But this simply won’t work for most people with either LDs or ADHD.

Why? At its heart, the online high school requires a great deal of self-discipline if you are going to succeed. And if you have LDs or ADHD, self-discipline is often in short supply because your frontal lobes aren’t fully developed — especially when you are 16! — and/or your executive functions are underdeveloped.

So, what is the result? If you have learning disabilities or ADHD, online high school is by default going to be much harder than homeschooling. Why? Because it requires a great deal more self-discipline to sit down for hours and study when you know other teenagers your age are out having fun in some way — whether it is hanging out at the mall, engaging in extracurricular activities after school, or trying new sports with friends.

And if you fail to get your work done most of the time, then there is no doubt that online high school will seem like a huge flop because all sorts of things would not get done: Schoolwork does not get completed on time, report cards will show you’ve earned a D or F on most of your subjects and you’ll end up looking much worse than if you didn’t attempt online high school in the first place.

So, if I were to offer one piece of advice to all parents whose kids have ADHD or LDs, it would be this: Do not send them off to online high school unless they are self-motivated and willing to study for hours by themselves without any distractions. If this is the case — and only then — then the online high school might just work out as a reasonable option for your teenager.

But otherwise, stick with homeschooling until your teenager is at least 17 or 18 years old because he can get more help from you (or a tutor) without having to worry about making friends or engaging in as many other activities. Or, if your child insists on going off to an online high school anyway, then he’ll need the best available technology support (such as laptop and wireless headset), frequent meetings with teachers, and amplified auditory input so he can hear you more clearly when they speak during teleconference sessions.

Because these are all things that will help make him feel more comfortable at home rather than already being out in some public school — where most students tease each other mercilessly for any number of reasons, including physical disabilities like LDs!

Do not set yourself up for failure by trying online high school before your teen is ready for it because this isn’t what it seems to be for high school students with LDs. And if you truly feel he is ready for it, then be sure to get him the best technical support possible first so you can help ensure his success without having to worry about anything else.

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