Youth and young adults with learning disabilities (LD), like their peers without disabilities, must acquire the knowledge, skills, and strategies necessary to maximize their ability to function independently on a day-to-day basis in our society. Learning how to learn and engaging in lifelong learning are particularly important components of academic success and employment success, especially given the fast pace at which the nature of work is changing. Learning how one learns best, a key principle within what is known as strategic learning, can be particularly difficult for youth with LD, who often do not do as well as their peers in traditional classroom settings, finding less success in retaining information or achieving proficiency levels on assessments.
Educators can implement specific teaching strategies to help more students, including those with disabilities, develop these strategic learning skills. In addition to adopting inclusive teaching methods that reach all kinds of learners (see NCWD/Youth’s InfoBrief, Using Universal Design for Learning: Successful Transition Models for Educators Working with Youth with Learning Disabilities), educators can apply strategies in the classroom to help youth with LD identify their strengths and take control of their own learning. This InfoBrief provides teachers with practical techniques and lesson ideas to enhance students’ strategic learning skills.