Summer for the NVLD child

Well, for most kids, school is out.  What to do?

Children with nonverbal learning disabilities may want to have summers that are less structured than the typical child and they may resist your imposing structure on them.  But, for some, the lack of structure may be disruptive. Only you can tell about your child, but here are some thoughts.

Before imposing some structure, talk about it with your  child.

Let your child help with the choice of structure.

Allow a minimum of structure and see what happens.

Get your child some things so that he or she can structure their own time.


  1. As an adult with this disorder who was diagnosed only 2 years ago (and it’s still not my official diagnosis) I was one who HATED structure and I still do somewht. My anxiety is worst in novel situations and most of these “structured activities” involved new and unfamiliar environments with a lot of strangers. I’m also someone who needs to feel like I have control over what’s happening to me, so being forced into things was just be a bad idea on all fronts. I would’ve liked to do something, but that was my choice. Also, if you’re going to have structure, stick with activities your child will excel at, otherwise their summers won’t be much fun.

  2. Thanks for the comments, Katie! I agree.

  3. As an addendum to Katie’s post, do you have trouble doing things you don’t excel at? As this is an issue for me, and puts me off doing a lot of things!

  4. No, I do lots of stuff I don’t excel at, like playing chess and bridge. I think you have to figure that, with things not related to your career or to life and death stuff, if you enjoy it, you win.

  5. Kathleen Donohue says

    Hello. I’m not sure that my questions to you and your readers belong here, Mr Flom, and I’d rather not “publish” my name, but do want to ask you enough to take that chance. NYC seems to be a surprisingly dry place for the kind of guidance I am looking for and there seems to be precious few bits of up to date (post “MeToo”) research to be had, so here goes. Are there any NVLD specific / NVLD only resources by, for or about young NVLD adults concerning the tendency to be gullible targets for dangerous persons? I’ve seen a book about personal safety for young women with Autism. Is there any book, professional provider or support group that addresses the dangers for young adults with NVLD of involvement with manipulative, coercive, controlling, even violent and cultish, intimate partners, friends, social groups, co-workers, and bosses? I’d hate to cause panic amongst the parents of younger children with NVLD, but do believe that it is realistic to anticipate this problem, especially as regards their Daughters. It is hard for a parent to reconcile the often dire need to warn and protect a young adult from bad actors with that of the young adult’s exquisitely sensitive NVLD-distinct need to feel and be seen as competent. I am hoping that there is some way parents with Non Verbal Learning Disordered children can foresee and then plan to meet this challenge. As to the parents now struggling to do so with enough grace to spare the young adult grave psychic injury, guidance and maybe even some fellowship with more experienced parents and/ or adults with NVLD could help. Would you be in a position to advise?

  6. Hi Kathleen – I don’t know of any resources like that that are specific to NVLD.

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