Children, Ages 3-5: Common Disabilities Essay


CE-240- Learning Disabilities


Difficulty pronouncing words.

Trouble learning to do snaps, zippers, buttons, and tying shoes

Difficulty controlling scissors, pencils and crayons, and coloring between two lines

Trouble sticking to routines and following instructions

Trouble rhyming

Difficulty mastering shapes, colors, numbers, and days of the week

This term encompasses a range of learning problems that have little or nothing to do with motivation and intelligence (Kemp, Smith & Segal, 2013). Children struggling with learning disabilities could, therefore, be as capable or intelligent as other children, but would usually "see, hear and understand things differently" (Kemp, Smith & Segal, 2013). This as the authors further point out makes it quite challenging for such children to process, and put to use, new information (Kemp, Smith & Segal, 2013). Learning disabilities range from struggling with reading and spelling, to difficulty in understanding math (Kemp, Smith & Segal, 2011).

The main types of learning disorders are "dyslexia, dyscalculia, dysgraphia, dyspraxia, dysphasia, auditory processing disorder, and visual processing disorder" (Kemp, Smith & Segal, 2011). Among these, only dyslexia is associated with children aged between three and five; the rest mostly affect older, school-going children. The general characteristics of learning disabilities displayed by preschoolers include (Kemp, Smith & Segal, 2013);

Difficulty pronouncing words.

Trouble learning to do snaps, zippers, buttons, and tying shoes

Difficulty controlling scissors, pencils and crayons, and coloring between two lines

Trouble sticking to routines and following instructions

Trouble rhyming

Difficulty mastering shapes, colors, numbers, and days of the week

It would be prudent to mention, at this point, that it is quite normal for children of this age to display these difficulties from time to time. Action should only be taken if the child's "ability to master certain skills" is consistently uneven (Kemp, Smith & Segal, 2013). Moreover, the aforementioned difficulties could also be as a result of either of the other two disabilities (Kemp, Smith & Segal, 2013).


ADHD (Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder)





This is a common disorder that hinders a child's ability to "inhibit their spontaneous responses -- responses can involve anything from movement to speech to attentiveness"...


So, instead of punishing or terming as 'ill-behaved' a child with the habit of blurting "out inappropriate comments at inappropriate times," it would be beneficial to first assess the likelihood of ADHD by observing their behavior across all situations; at home, in class, during play, during meals, etc. (Smith & Segal, 2014).
The key characteristics associated with ADHD are; inattentiveness, hyperactivity, and inattentiveness - each with a different set of symptoms (Smith & Segal, 2014).

Symptoms of Inattentiveness

Lack of attention to detail

Frequent careless mistakes

Easy distracted; difficulty maintaining focus

Trouble following directions and remembering things

Easily bored

Frequently misplacing toys

Symptoms of Hyperactivity

Constant squirming and fidgeting

Constant movement; inappropriate running or climbing

Excessive talking

Trouble relaxing and lying quietly

Hot temper

Trouble sitting quietly

Always 'on-the-move'

Symptoms of Impulsivity

Difficulty waiting for their turn in games or in line

Frequently interrupting others

Intruding on other children's games

Having frequent anger outbursts

Saying "the wrong thing at the wrong time" (Smith & Segal, 2014).

The presence of these symptoms is not, however, a guarantee for ADHD; certain medical conditions, behavioral and psychological disorders, traumatic experiences and learning disabilities could have the same symptoms. Professional advice should be sought to rule these out, before any treatment is advanced (Smith & Segal, 2014).




Difficulty applying multiple non-verbal cues

Difficulty developing relationships with peers

Lack of interest in sharing with peers

Lack of emotional and social reciprocity

Inadequate speech; no incentive to improve

Inability to sustain a conversation with peers

Unwillingness to play

Difficulty adhering to routines

Consistent motor manners

Consistent pre-occupation with objects

This refers to "a pattern of differences in a child's development that affects socialization, communication, play and behavior" (Autism Society of Los Angeles, 2014). The characteristics of autism displayed by children aged between 3 and five are;

Difficulty applying multiple non-verbal behaviors concurrently


Sources Used in Documents:


Adams, S. & Baronberg, J. (2010). Importance of Family Involvement. Retrieved from

Autism Society of Los Angeles. (2014). Ages 3-5 - Transition to School. Autism Society of Los Angeles. Retrieved from

Kemp, G., Smith, M. & Segal, J. (2013). Learning Disabilities and Disorders. Help Guide. Retrieved from

Smith, M. & Segal, R. (2014). ADD/ADHD in Children. Help Guide. Retrieved from

Cite this Document:

"Children Ages 3-5 Common Disabilities" (2014, February 28) Retrieved April 22, 2024, from

"Children Ages 3-5 Common Disabilities" 28 February 2014. Web.22 April. 2024. <>

"Children Ages 3-5 Common Disabilities", 28 February 2014, Accessed.22 April. 2024,

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