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For students with learning differences and difficulties, a page of text, reading out loud, a spelling test or other situations where they have experienced past embarrassment or failures trigger this same response. As far as their brain is concerned, school work is a hungry lion. Sadly, the more desperately the student NEEDS to access their strategic processes, the less likely they are to be able to do so.
So much of our brain chemistry happens outside of conscious thought, but we can help manage anxiety with deliberate strategies and understanding. One of the most powerful techniques to help students deal with the challenges of anxiety is to teach them about the worry and anxiety they are dealing with, learn strategies for calming and to allow themselves and their brain time to move past fear and access their other cognitive skills.