Amelia, a 9-Year-Old UK school girl and RADLD Ambassador, is living her best life. With support, she continues to reach her goals despite being diagnosed with an ‘invisible’ communication disability affecting 2 students in every class of 30.
Amelia loves to be busy! She plays the cornet, enjoys dance, drama and pole fitness. She recently joined girls’ football, choir and film club at school. Amelia has Developmental Language Disorder and is proof DLD kids can thrive with the right supports in place.
Developmental Language Disorder or DLD is a lifelong, permanent neurodevelopmental condition affecting 1 in 14 people.
The 2021 DLD Awareness Day campaign is asking teachers to #ThinkLanguage #ThinkDLD to increase the early identification of DLD and support for students at school.
Thanks to early intervention, Amelia’s DLD was picked up at 6 years of age. She has been well supported since that time and has almost caught up to the expected academic levels for a 9 year old, despite not reaching any of her Early Years Foundation Stage targets at age 5.
Amelia’s mum Claire really wants teachers to know that early identification of DLD is vital. “Just because somebody can talk and appears to be listening doesn’t mean there isn’t an issue – Amelia still has significant gaps in her vocabulary knowledge because she doesn’t just “pick up” words as most children do,” Claire shared.
“Just taking that little bit of time to check she’s really understood and isn’t just repeating back words with no comprehension can make a huge difference. And we know we are lucky – Amelia’s language needs were very obvious, and she has her diagnosis. Not all children with DLD have been diagnosed, and so they may not be getting the support they need.”
One teacher can change a student’s life by spotting their challenges with language. RADLD is asking teachers to keep an eye out, and whenever they see a student struggling with learning, #ThinkLanguage #ThinkDLD.
Students with DLD can succeed at school when they are identified and have access to the right supports. But first they need our help. Please view and share this year’s DLD Awareness Day animated video to help raise awareness: https://youtu.be/MU1inVSISFo
Thank you Amelia and Claire for sharing your story with us.
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We’d love to hear about your experiences with DLD. Please email us at firstname.lastname@example.org and include photos if possible.