These children have a very low intellectual competence.They cannot be fitted into ordinary schools. They need to go to special schools where they are attended by specialists and with medical facilities,if they have physical complications.
They can learn only to read and writing. Most of them need a help especially to develop motor ,perceptual and simple language skills so that they can be competent in serving themselves in their lives.
They can be taught to feed,dress and take themselves to the toilet and to do other home routines,however some children maybe able to look for themselves after being intensively trained for very long time.They need constant supervision , when performing simple task in closely monitored situations.
The speech of these children is very limited or completely absent.The most severely affected can never able to serve themselves and are permanently hospitalised and depend on health personnel for all their daily upkeep.
The Moderately Retarded children look normal like others and can care for themselves ,having the capability of relating with others ,but cannot able to read,write and solve complex mathematical problems.
Normally in classrooms we can have such children who are mentally retarded with no physical defects. Their psycho-motor development is relatively normal.
These children' s handicaps cannot commonly detected until they begin school.They are troublesome in the classroom as they require much individual attention. They are some of the major cause of disciplinary problems.
However they can able to learn basic skills and crafts like graghics,arts and physical education.When they are adults are capable of doing simple community works which involve the use of their hands.
Mental Handicap sometimes cause physicaly disability.That's a child can not able to walk propery as a result of damages to the part of the brain that controls the limbs. Children with mental handicap do not benefit from the usual educational methods and content offered in normal community schools.The children are special children and usually fall in the category of slow learners. The slow learner is a child who is taking long time to cope with the task expected of him at a certain age.Mentally handicapped comprises both mental dullness and mental retardation. The Mental Dull Children ,according to Child(1978:267),"by nature have limited intellectual endowment and would not be expected to become bright adults after receiving specialised education".The idea supported by Chimedza and Peters(2003)who state that mentally retarded children cannot grasp concepts quickly .These children suffer from low intelligence ,multiple handicaps such as blindness and deafness.Sometimes these children are called profoundly retarded children.The children has difficulties in speaking and their psycho-motor development is extremely limited.Most of them need life long care institutions because they need to be supervised constantly and are unable to care for themselves.
The Mentally Retarded Children have poor academic achievements because of environmental factors and their mental abilities.However they can do much better after provided with remedial aid and carefully handled. Poor socio-economic home background is one of the environmental factors which cause mental retardation ,children from such homes may not get enough food,poor learning facilities at home ,that's speech and reading skills ,lack adequate sleep and general adverse parential attitudes towards education.
The school itself can also be an environmental factor which cause retardation .Take for instance a situation where the classes are too large ,making the teacher unable to attend to individual problems or where teaching methods are not child centred ,like using the quick lecture method and give quickly children's work , using unsuitable media eventually retardation develops.
Some children become retarded through constant changes of locations and schools ,which consequently cause changes of methods of teaching and content coverage.
Retardation can be caused by clashes of personality between the teacher and the child.The child failed to perform assigned tasks,which leads the child to feel inadequate ,then lost confidence and initiatives.Therefore this child becomes anxious , timid and performs badly.
However no matter how severe is the abnormality ,disability is not in ability so lets help those we disability to cope with life by developing some of the basic skills essential for their life.
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