October 19, 2012 00:00 By KWANRIAM KAEWSUWAN THE NATION
As many as 900,000 Thai children have some form of learning disability (LD), a seminar was told yesterday. This is about 5 per cent of the Kingdom's total population of children.
“This is in addition to children who have symptoms similar to those in the LD group,” LD Thailand Association president Padung Arayawinyu said at the seminar.
Some children considered “lazy” show symptoms indicative of LD, he said.
The event was held by the Quality Learning Foundation and the Rajanukul Institute to raise awareness of LD and how to thelp children affected by it.
Padung said parents could be taught to identify children with LD at the kindergarten level.
“If children cannot understand orders about directions or are disorganised, they may have LD,” he said. “Parents can also bring their children to us if they suspect the children have LD. We have diagnosis tools.”
Padung said that though there was no cure for LD, early diagnosis and proper treatment could reduce the symptoms.
Children with LD are typically at least two grade levels behind their peers in terms of their ability to learn academic subjects. For example, those in Pathom 4 may have the knowledge of a Prathom 2 student.
He added that genes, exposure to contaminants such as lead and mercury, and a poor environment were among the causes of LD.
One in every 500 autistic children had LD and the number of autistic children was rising, Padung said.
“A flawed digestive system is a possible cause of the increase,” he said.