When it comes to learning support programmes for kids with learning differences, there are many choices available in Singapore.Here are some of the best options available to assist children with learning difficulties, including early intervention programmes, learning support educators, special needs education schools and assessment at schools, therapy centres and organisations.
SACAC Counselling – learning support programmes
SACAC Counselling provides support to the wider expatriate and local community through a team of highly experienced and professionally trained counsellors, clinical psychologists and psychotherapists. The multicultural team offers various types of assessment and therapeutic services for children and adults, supporting a variety of needs in children such as emotional, physical, academic and learning and behavioural challenges such as ADHD, autism, dyslexia, OCD and Oppositional Defiant Disorder.
Cognitive, learning and behavioural challenges for young children and adolescents are identified through assessment and early intervention services. Psycho-educational and developmental assessments are paired with therapeutic support to help children develop essential skills that enable them to thrive academically, emotionally and socially.
The individual and group therapy services on offer address specific, emotional, learning, behavioural and developmental challenges for children, adults and families. The team uses a variety of therapeutic modalities, including expressive therapies like Art Therapy, Play Therapy and Sand Therapy; Acceptance and Commitment Therapy; Cognitive Behavioural Therapy; Eye Movement Desensitisation and Reprocessing; Dialectical Behaviour Therapy, and more. Clients can also expect one-on-one parent or family sessions with a trained therapist to work on specific areas of concern.
SACAC Counselling emphasises parenting work when working with children and adolescents. The therapist will work collectively with whoever is involved in the care of the child to ensure wholistic support for them. They also organise specialised professional workshops, talks and support groups to address the specific needs of children and their families. Attendees can expect targeted instruction and strategies designed to improve skills and manage challenges as they arise.
The Winstedt School (TWS) – learning support educators
TWS prioritises students’ wellbeing and fosters an inclusive learning environment for neurodivergent learners. It has established a comprehensive, evidence-based and effective model of support for all of its students in all classes. It combines Integrated Therapy and pastoral care with an innovative education model embedded in all school routines. IT such as Occupational Therapy (OT) and Speech and Language Therapy is provided every week as ‘push-ins’ during unstructured times throughout the school day. PC such as counselling and emotional regulation is provided both in class and during group times.
The school supports students with learning difficulties including autism, dyslexia, ADHD, dyspraxia and academic anxiety. Small class sizes allow TWS educators to deliver highly personalised teaching and create personalised learning experiences, and the British mainstream curriculum is delivered in an individualised way to meet student needs. One-on-one learning support programmes in Literacy, Maths and English as an Additional Language are also available for those who need it. In addition, students are supported with a high teacher-to-student ratio, SEN teachers, behavioural therapists and bi-weekly Social and Emotional Learning classes.
The school’s Social, Emotional and Educational Development (SEED) Programme is a school readiness programme aimed at improving the experience of students who require an innovative and specialised approach to classroom instruction. The Winstedt School’s 2e programme was launched in 2021. It’s designed specially to support twice-exceptional students by fostering their social-emotional and executive functioning skills.
At TWS’s OT gyms, students develop their fine and gross motor skills through goal-based games and activities throughout the day. The school also offers parent training and workshops on topics such as Perspective-Taking, Essential Life and Communication Skills for Senior School and Beyond, and Self-Advocacy. The parent support group series, called Parents Uplift Each Other, utilises Winstedt’s parent community to be a resource for one another.
Psych Connect – special needs education support
The team at Psych Connect recognises that no one child is alike, and that individuality ought to be nourished and developed. They also strongly believe that every child deserves a respectful and safe space where they feel reassured and supported in their own personal therapeutic journey.
The team’s treatment protocol is designed to meet each child’s individual needs so that they can access the curriculum and reach their own highest potential. At the heart of their work is the belief that therapy ought to be fun, engaging and generalisable to outside the clinical setting. Their various services cater to a range of learning differences. These include dyslexia, dyscalculia, dysgraphia, nonverbal learning disorder, ADHD, autism, language disorders, executive functioning difficulties and more. Special needs support is also available for conditions that influence children’s aptitude to learn, such as IBS, depression and anxiety.
To begin, a psychologist will meet with parents about their concerns and share evidence-based information on possible paths they may take. Through psycho-educational and diagnostic assessments, parents will be able to objectively understand their child’s strengths and weaknesses, factors contributing to their learning differences and, most importantly, how to best support the child. The centre’s team also works with the family and school to create a specific and holistic treatment plan.
Therapy services are mobile and family-centred – they can be done at the clinic, at school or at home, and both individual and group-based services are available. Your team of clinicians will partner and journey with you, so that you’re informed about your child’s therapies; they’ll also provide special needs support to your child outside of the clinical setting.
Dover Court International School (DCIS) – learning support educators
This is a British international school with inclusion at its heart. DCIS welcomes students with diverse learning differences and needs by offering an extensive range of support to empower each individual to reach and exceed their potential. Catering to students aged three to 18, the school provides three bespoke learning pathways. Pathway 1 is the mainstream provision, offering a personalised classroom experience to all students. Pathways 2 and 3 give students increasing levels of support with smaller class sizes, an adapted curriculum and in-school therapy programmes. The school’s learning approach aligns closely with the English National Curriculum, with adaptations to meet the special education needs of students, whether it’s short-term intervention or more structured ongoing support.
Learning experiences at Dover Court are personalised and the most appropriate curriculum pathway is selected. In Pathways 2 and 3, students are supported by lessons tailored to meet individual needs. The aim is to offer support for learning differences in the most inclusive and least intrusive way. A combination of research-backed teaching methodology, a focus on pastoral relationships and regular communication with parents allow teachers to identify students who require additional support. A student-centred, collaborative problem-solving process is used; this involves parents, teachers, special needs education coordinators, external agencies, educational psychologists, counsellors and, most importantly, the student.
The Dr Maureen Roach Building, named after Dover Court’s former principal, boasts classrooms specifically designed for the needs of the Pathway 3 students, with sensory and movement rooms and an extended outdoor learning space. Centrally located on the campus with easy access to playgrounds, sports facilities and the school garden, it provides an environment where all students can grow and flourish.
The Other Clinic – learning support programmes
The Other Clinic (TOC) is an international practice of psychologists, counsellors and therapists from the occupational, behaviour and art disciplines. Their space is designed to be a welcoming and calm environment that’s neurodivergent affirmative and LGBTQ+ friendly.
The holistic ethos here is on working collaboratively with parents and schools since that’s where children spend most of their time. For TOC, sustainable change is brought about by working with all systems around the child, including professionals in health and medical. The team partners with parents in advocating for their child’s development and learning and emotional wellbeing.
Evidence-based support is provided both in the clinic and at the children’s homes for a wide range of needs at home and in school. These include anxiety, mood, OCD, bullying, separation or divorce, learning differences, executive function challenges, challenging behaviours or emotional dysregulation, and sleep and exam anxiety.
TOC’s neurodivergent specialist team works with children with ADHD, ASD, dyslexia, dyspraxia, dysgraphia and dyscalculia. They also provide comprehensive assessment and diagnosis, school support, parenting support and intervention in both one-to-one and group settings. Their specialist support team focuses on emotional-based school avoidance or refusal, which is something that the team has seen rising since COVID-19. They also run groups that develop social skills and friendship for children, pre-teens and teens as well as workshops for parents and schools.
The clinic uses a variety of interventions including social thinking, Cognitive Behavioural Therapy, Acceptance and Commitment Therapy for Teens, Dialectical Behaviour Therapy, Zones of Regulation, sand and art therapy, therapeutic storytelling, Circles of Security parenting and Cogmed.
Dynamics Therapy Group – special needs Singapore
Dynamics Therapy Group understands that children encounter a myriad of issues that can be overwhelming, and the unique difficulties parents face with these issues. The group’s distinct approach acknowledges parental struggles by crafting individualised solutions via a personalised pathway to ensure rapid results. Their therapies empower children and their parents to overcome the barriers they face, from learning and neurological challenges like ADHD, autism, dyslexia and learning disabilities to speech and language disorders and delay, stuttering, feeding and swallowing issues and picky eaters. They also address occupational therapy needs, encompassing fine and gross motor skills, handwriting, sensory integration and Developmental Coordination Disorder.
The specifically tailored range of services for young learners include:
- Speech therapy to help children communicate effectively
- Occupational therapy for young ones to develop essential life skills such as handwriting, sensory processing and executive functioning
- Education therapy tailored to support academic progress and address learning differences such as dyslexia and dyscalculia
- Social skills training to equip children with the skills they need to build meaningful relationships and navigate social situations
- An Early Intervention Programme ensuring that young children receive the specialised attention they need for optimal development
- Dynamics International School, which provides individualised education for both mainstream children and those who require special education
- Psychological counselling and assessments by expert psychologists for diagnostic assessments, recommendations and intervention for children and their families
- Physiotherapy for physical wellbeing and to promote mobility
- Parent support groups based on the challenges they’re facing.
- Applied Behaviour Analysis (ABA) focuses on positive behaviour reinforcement to help children with learning and developmental challenges.
The Dynamics team believe that every child deserves to thrive, regardless of their learning differences. Their comprehensive range of services and commitment to personalised care empower children and their families on the journey towards a brighter future.
TLC Speech Clinic – speech learning support specialists
TLC Speech Clinic is a private, one-stop therapy centre. It was started by two experienced speech therapists who wished to provide quality therapy services that they wouldn’t hesitate to send their own kids for. TLC aims to maximise a child’s potential in life while making it convenient and seamless for busy parents and kids to receive a range of specialised and evidence-based therapy at one place.
This is the only centre in Singapore that provides strong speech therapy support for both communication and feeding issues for kids, including those in their Early Intervention Programme.
The team of dedicated and experienced therapists and educators employ a holistic approach to work closely with and support families who have children with learning challenges. This is through a comprehensive range of services for speech, language and communication difficulties, sensory processing issues, motor skill delays, behavioural management, academic issues and cognitive and socio-emotional difficulties. TLC also provides specialised group therapies, including the popular TLC Social Communication Group, TLC School Readiness Programme and TLC Full-Day EIP Programme.
Magic Beans – speech learning support programmes
Each therapist at Magic Beans specialises in one of two specific areas when attending to children. These are speech and language, and feeding and swallowing.
The speech therapists excel in assisting late talkers, children with articulation or pronunciation issues, language difficulties including sentence formation, reading and writing as well as those who stutter and have voice problems. Children with conditions like autism, global developmental delays, developmental language disorder, Down’s syndrome and cerebral palsy have benefited from Magic Beans’ support. The therapists utilise a range of tailored approaches to help nurture a child’s communication skills. These include Hanen It Takes Two To Talk, Visualizing and Verbalizing, DIR Floortime, PROMPT, TalkTools and Social Thinking.
When it comes to addressing feeding-related challenges, Magic Beans specialises in infant therapy, starting from newborns. They have experience in bottle aversion, difficulties in bottle sucking and swallowing, excessive drooling and chewing difficulties. The therapists are particularly skilled in aiding children who face hurdles when transitioning to solid foods or regular meals as well as tackling fussy eating. They employ various therapy approaches like the SOS approach to eating, food chaining, division of responsibility and responsive feeding therapy. Additionally, Magic Beans assists children dependent on tube-feeding by addressing any sensory issues associated with this while transitioning them away from it.
Each Magic Beans therapist has a minimum of six years of experience and most have over a decade of service, so children are in capable hands here.
Psychology Blossom – invidualised treatment plans
Psychology Blossom comprises a large team of psychologists, psychotherapists and counsellors who work with other healthcare professionals such as psychiatrists, speech and language therapists, occupational therapists and doctors.
The team attends to their clients’ needs with empathy, respect and collaboration in a safe space Their psychotherapists ensure that clients leave sessions being more equipped to address current issues, and better equipped to face life’s future challenges.
The child therapy and child assessment team uses a variety of assessment tools to identify specific learning or behavioural difficulties in children and adolescence. These include child and parent interviews, school observations and psychometric tests to measure intellectual abilities, evaluate academic skills, and neurodevelopmental, behavioural, or emotional challenges. These evaluations aid in the diagnosis of learning disabilities or other children presentations, such as ADHD and autism. For neurodevelopmental disorders, they use a variety of assessments including Conners Third Edition, Conners Continuous Performance Test, Autism Diagnostic Observation Schedule-Second Edition and Autism Diagnostic Interview-Revised.
For students with learning and behavioural challenges, Psychology Blossom’s team develops Individualised Treatment Plans in collaboration with teachers, educators and parents. These plans outline specific accommodations, interventions and strategies tailored to the individual needs of students to help them succeed academically and socially. They also use a range of therapies such as sand play, play and expressive arts, music and movement activities, mindfulness, and breathing and relaxation techniques to support children in expressing themselves in different ways.
Psychology Blossom provides parents and teachers with training on how to work with children with challenges or learning disabilities. Adults also have access to parenting and psychoeducation support groups designed to provide practical advice and coping strategies for dealing with caregiver stress. For children with learning disabilities, they have support groups that provide them with a sense of belonging, a safe space to share their experiences, and opportunities to develop social skills.
ABC Center Singapore – learning support specialists
ABC Center Singapore was opened in 2009 as the Southeast Asia branch of USA-based Applied Behavior Consultants Inc., founded in 1987. ABC Center is a global expert in providing therapy for autism and other developmental disabilities. They use Applied Behaviour Analysis (ABA) therapy, which is the most clinically proven method for helping children with autism, available in one-on-one or in group sessions. 100 percent of children under the centre’s care have made progress, including being able to communicate their wants and needs within a year.
ABC Center is one of the autism treatment centres in Singapore with some of the most experienced Board Certified Behavior Analysts. They’re also the only ABA-focused intervention provider on the Early Intervention Programme for Infants and Children – P (EIPIC-P) programme administered by the Early Childhood Development Agency. This means that Singaporeans and PRs can apply for financial subsidies on treatments.
Parent training is extremely important for the team here. They say it’s the main way to ensure that children are supported consistently both at the centre and at home. This helps to maintain and even accelerate a child’s progress. All parents enrolled with them go through a seven-week Positive Programming for Parents Training programme, at no extra charge.
They also offer group early intervention with a preschool-type curriculum, using ABA principles, as they’ve seen how a significant number of children are able to attend mainstream school with same age peers if autism therapy is started early.
- Central: 318 Tanglin Road, #01-42 | 9423 6248 | email@example.com
- East: #01-03, Blk D Mountbatten Centre, 231 Mountbatten Road | 8380 3297 | firstname.lastname@example.org
WINGS Therapy Center – learning support programmes
Established in 2017, WINGS is Singapore’s first and only intensive therapy centre. Over 6,000 babies, kids and young adults from all over the world have walked through their doors. The cornerstone of the practice is the belief that every child who walks through their doors has untapped potential, regardless of how profound their condition is. It’s up to the highly skilled and creative team to draw out this potential.
WINGS’ therapists believe that by using a mixture of consistency, high intensity and the right methodology for the specific condition each child has, goals can be achieved. Their therapy programmes are geared towards supporting your special child’s journey to independent living. WINGS’ therapists believe there’s no one-size-fits-all solution – they build a personalised programme for each patient. They work with caregivers to assess their patient’s current functioning level. At the end of each therapy intensive, caregivers are trained to carry out a personalised home programme.
In an engaging environment, each patient is encouraged to reach their therapy goals as quickly as they can. These include milestones like grasping, sitting, standing, walking and beyond. The centre’s wide range of therapy services include Dynamic Movement Intervention, suit therapy, adaptive sports, autism fitness, functional electrical stimulation, gait training and vibration therapy. WINGS accepts patients with a broad range of conditions from 20 weeks of age right through to their early 20s.
Little Artists Art Studio – art programmes in special needs education
Little Artists supports children with mild to moderate special needs. This includes children with dyslexia, ADHD, Asperger, learning difficulties or language delays. The studio integrates students in a regular classroom. They say that all students who are behaviourally settled can achieve the best benefits.
The learning support programme by Little Artists encourages creativity and expression through art. The programme for each child is planned after carefully analysing their requirement. Besides developing artistic skills, the art activities are planned to improve concentration, better coordination and foster confidence. Each lesson is one or two hours. Junior Students are taught in a 4:1 ratio and senior students in a 6:1 ratio.
Over the years, the team has seen many children develop and progress very well. In fact, some of them have enrolled in SOTA and other art colleges at senior level to pursue their future in arts.