The Today show aired a fun piece today about a little girl who opted to wear a hotdog costume to her dance class on Princess Day!

Now that’s confidence!  I love the individuality of little kids and I love it when people aren’t afraid to be themselves.

Being different because you choose to be is often something to be admired.  But being different because you can’t help it, can be painful.

Over and over, I hear parents of struggling students say, “I just don’t want him to feel different.”

When you are the student who’s always being told to, “Pay attention,” or the one who has to stay in at recess to finish your work, or leave the classroom for special help, being different doesn’t feel so great.

Students with average to above average intelligence that struggle with dyslexia, ADHD, learning disabilities, or academic struggles, can look around the classroom and know that they are different.

They didn’t choose it.  They don’t like it.  And they can’t help it.  They know that other other students study less and get better grades; get more awards; have more friends; and can read, write, spell, or do math easily.  And because these struggling students are intelligent and can see the differences, they often come to the conclusion that they just aren’t that smart.  They come home saying,

“ I’m just stupid.”

“I’m the dumbest kid in the class.”

It’s untrue, but it feels true.  And it’s no fun to be different in this way.

The great news is, that learning challenges like this can change.  There are numerous underlying learning/processing skills that need to be in place in order for students to learn easily at their potential in school.  When any of these underlying skills are weak, it can cause even very bright students to struggle.

By identifying the weak underlying skills and developing them through intensive, targeted brain training, the foundation for comfortable, efficient learning can be established and the academic skills can be brought up to par.

Brett was a 5th grade student who came to Stowell Learning Center very unhappily.  He hated being different in school.  He hated needing help.  Here’s what he said at the end of his program of cognitive training and academic remediation:

“Coming to Stowell has helped me in math, reading, and all the rest. It has also made me a better person. I am now a more thoughtful person. Before I came to Stowell I got bad grades. Now that I come to Stowell I improved in all subjects. My grades before were Ds. Now they raised to As and Bs. It makes me feel special to be known as a smart kid to other people.”

Is your bright child feeling not so bright?  Are you ready for a change?

JOIN US for a FREE Information Night

For information and RSVP go to


“Helping smart but struggling students dramatically improve or completely correct their learning and attention challenges by developing the underlying learning skills that are not supporting the learner well enough.”
We serve children and adults with diagnosed or undiagnosed learning and attention challenges including learning disabilities, dyslexia, ADHD, auditory processing disorders, and autism spectrum disorders.
Jill Stowell, M.S.
Author:  At Wit’s End A Parent’s Guide to Ending the Struggle Tears, and Turmoil of Learning Disabilities
Founder and Executive Director – Stowell Learning Centers

Recent Posts



Ready to take the next step?

Speak to a Learning Specialist to learn more about the results from students and parents at Stowell Learning Centers.