Learning Disabilities (LD) Awareness Month

Learning Disabilities Awareness Month (October) is a time where people pay special attention to children and adults with learning disabilities. During this month, Reading Rockets asks each of you to teach one person one new thing about learning disabilities. If you find an interesting article or resource here, consider passing it along to a friend, family member, or colleague.

What you'll find in this section:

Information on learning disabilities

Down and Up: The Animated Journey of a Child Struggling in School. This animation from the National Center for Learning Disabilities shows what it’s like for a child who is struggling in school. It also shows the power of kind words when it comes to overcoming obstacles.


Learning Disabilities: An Overview will tell you what a learning disability is, the different types, and the causes.

These briefs describe the specific types of learning disabilities:

The LD OnLine glossary defines the vocabulary of special education.

The LD OnLine timeline tells the history of learning disabilities.

Print books, audio books and e-books for children

Children's Books

Share a picture book with a child you know. Try one of these from the Reading Rockets or LD OnLine booklists:

High/low Books

High interest/low reading level books can motivate struggling readers by providing books on topics that their peers are reading, but targeted toward their reading level. High/low books can help build reading fluency, vocabulary, background knowledge and interest in reading. Follow this link to find recommended high/low books, as well as links to publishers who offer a wide range of titles.

Audio Books

Audio books allow children who struggle with reading to enjoy a book that's at their interest level, but that might be above their reading level. They also provide good examples of fluent, expressive reading and strengthen listening skills.


Meet the Author: Lin Oliver (Hank Zipzer series)


Meet Lin Oliver, co-author (with Henry Winkler) of the popular Hank Zipzer and Here's Hank series about a young boy with learning differences who is funny, resourceful, and smart. Find out why kids (and their parents) love Hank and learn more about the readable "dyslexie" font and page design in the Here's Hank series.

Oliver also talks about the importance of celebrating differences and supporting the unique strengths in each child, as well as her own experiences parenting a child with attention issues.

Inspirational stories

Stories about success can inspire each of us to feel more confident in meeting the challenges of learning disabilities.


Send an e-card to a teacher who has gone above and beyond to help a child with LD. The beginning of the school year is a great time to write something specific you appreciate.

More resources

To learn more about reading, writing, and learning disabilities in young children, visit the Reading Rockets LD resources section.

For more in-depth information about learning disabilities, take a look at the comprehensive resources on our sister site LD OnLine.

The following organizations provide information and advocacy for children, families, and adults with learning disabilities:

History of LD Awareness Month

October was originally designated in the United States as LD Month in 1985 through a proclamation by President Ronald Reagan. Organizations in the United States use this month to inform the public about learning disabilities through events and proclamations. LD Awareness Month is celebrated in many states, often coordinated through each state's Learning Disabilities Association of America (LDA) office.

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Shanahan on Literacy
Timothy Shanahan
Dr. Joanne Meier
Dr. Joanne Meier
February 14, 2014
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"The man who does not read good books is no better than the man who can't." — Mark Twain