Children diagnosed with developmental language disorder (DLD) have different experiences depending on how this condition affects them. Some children might struggle to formulate structured sentences while others have trouble with understanding vocabulary, among other occurrences.

Due to this, each child should be met with specific needs that can assist their development as they learn and grow. With proper upliftment and community involvement, children and parents can adjust to everyday life efficiently, and maintain a healthy sociable life with this condition in the long term.

Here’s how you can manage children with a developmental language disorder.

Create A Toolkit For Daily Use

Repetition, rephrasing, and structure are some of the most essential factors in managing your child’s DLD. The more you can provide a continuous pack of simple details that they can apply to their lives, the higher the chance that they can advance their language growth and retain information. In this case, if you’re a parent or guardian, you can create a toolkit of vocabulary, phrases, sentence starters, and prompts for them to use and repeat in their everyday lives, whether at school or engaging in recreational activities.

Utilize practical learning tools that are interactive such as writing tablets, web programs, and apps. There are also a number of online resources you can view for more information on how to assist your child with DLD. Additionally, you can plan their day using guides on what they should be learning each day, and set time aside for revision. This kind of structure can ensure they continue to keep up with their studies and pursue a socially supported and conversable life.

Organize Information Into Sections

A large collection of information in one place can be discouraging for a child with DLD to manage. This includes both written and verbal communication such as reading and processing knowledge. So, to make learning and message conveying easier, you can organize information into clear and separate sections.

For instance, long paragraphs of text can be broken down into a few sentences each and then divided by large white spaces in between. Whenever the situation allows, information should be summarized into bullet points while only retaining key ideas that are concise and directly stated. Doing this can greatly motivate your child to keep reading and learning once they can access information that’s no longer intimidating to them.

Teachers Should State Clear Instructions

School education will most likely be one of the more challenging aspects of managing a child with DLD. This is because they’ll need more individualized attention, care, and patience in order to support their academic learning. As such, if a language or speech delay has been identified in your child, it’s important for your child’s educator to get involved in creating a supportive learning environment as early as possible.

An area where teachers can start implementing modified lesson plans quickly lies in how they instruct their children. They can do this by making clear, brief, and unambiguous statements while facing your child directly. For example, instruct the child ‘Do this (Open your book). Then do that (Go to page 10). This is what’s happening (We are learning English).’

These are especially helpful during the early childhood schooling of 1st-4th grade learning. Then, once your child moves to higher grades, teachers can give your child a list of instructions that they can tick off as they go along in their schoolwork if they’re comfortable with this.

Encourage Social Gatherings With Other Children

Children with DLD need to have their social well-being supported and to feel connected to those around them. To do this, you can host social gatherings that give your child the opportunity to practice their language skills, relate to children around their age, and make friends. You can also invite parents with children to join in the interactions and assist each other.

One study shows that DLD is found in about 7% of children in the US, so they won’t be the only child experiencing this condition. Therefore, socializing with other children they can relate to can provide emotional support. In the classroom, learners can be given time for class discussions that make use of talking prompts and telling stories that make learning more structured yet accessible.

Use Gestures And Visual Aids For Communication

One of the most proactive methods you can use to manage your child’s DLD is to incorporate gestures and visual aids into their communication support. Ongoing research suggests that children with DLD have an improved learning response when given a variety of visual and interactive stimuli to understand information. These should be an accompaniment to written and verbal language.

Thus, you and your child’s teacher can use graphs, pictures, icons, posters, charts, maps, and planners to better convey the meaning of the written text. In addition to this, you can use gestures such as hand movements and singing when talking to your child, and encourage them to do the same. This style of visual learning provides your child with extra perceptible clues to help them understand what’s being said. They can also use these gestures to express their own ideas and communicate with people around them.

Focus On Vocabulary Learning

Since a child with DLD may struggle with using and learning words, part of the learning curriculum should be focused on building their vocabulary and improving language literacy. This is particularly necessary for non-language subjects such as science, math, and economics that use specific and complex knowledge systems to convey their concepts.

Thus, your child will benefit from a list of keywords and their definitions before they begin a topic of work. For instance, if your child is about to start learning about geometry, you can write up a list of important words related to it so they can learn to better understand the topic overall.

These can be defining words such as what is a shape, line, object, dimension, distance, angle, space, and size. As suggested above, use visual cues to help with word-building and memorization. A key tip to remember here is to take it slow and not to overwhelm your child with too many vocabulary words at a time.


There are several approaches you can use to manage children with DLD that concern their education and adapting to life with the condition. Firstly, you should aim to keep all information conveyed to them as concise and direct as possible. Then give them as many options as you can to express and understand knowledge outside of using only written text and verbal communication.

Make learning stimulating, interactive, repetitive, and focused on word-building to improve their language growth and literacy. Keep your child interested in socializing with peers and loved ones as this can help maintain their mental health, and make them feel connected to people. Remember to seek out advice and resources from support groups when you need them. All these tips can be used to ensure children with DLD live confident and fulfilling lives.

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