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Educational Challenges

Joshua D. Feder, M.D.

Child & Family Psychiatry located in Solana Beach, CA

Sending your children off to school is exciting and bittersweet in the best of times. However, if your child has developmental or learning challenges, from dyslexia to autism, you want to know that your child has the best possible chance of success. Joshua D. Feder, M.D., a board-certified child and family psychiatrist, can help you and your child prepare for school and adjust to the new challenges of an educational environment. Call Dr. Feder or schedule an appointment online today to learn how to support your child through educational challenges.

Educational Challenges Q & A

What challenges will my differently abled child face at school?

Every child with learning or developmental challenges is unique.  Each child needs to be evaluated and supported with an individualized education plan (IEP) that addresses their needs in crucial areas of development, including:

  • Verbal and nonverbal communication
  • Social interaction
  • Imaginative or creative play
  • Sensory processing and Motor Function
  • Cognitive skills and specific learning supports


In particular, children with developmental disabilities such as ASD may have trouble interacting with teachers, aides, and students in the classroom. They may have difficulty understanding directions and instructions or any non-verbal cues.

However, you can support your child at home and collaborate with Dr. Feder and your school to ensure the teachers and staff have the information and training they need to best serve your child.

For example, in mainstream classrooms, there’s a certain degree of repetition needed to help all children remember concepts and ideas. Children with developmental or learning challenges are often just as capable as other children and still need repetition, but they may need a different approach or variation to ensure they understand the concept.

How can I prepare my child for school?

You can work with Dr. Feder to communicate with your child about what to expect in school. You can play school with them, read to them, and help them learn their letters and numbers before they even start school. With the child-led DIR®/Floortime™ model, you can introduce ideas during this playful and fun interaction. Dr. Feder can provide advice and direct you toward resources to help accomplish this goal.

If your child is older and starting a new school, you can use the communication techniques you practice with the DIR model to talk about change and support them as they transition schools or classrooms.  

How can a psychiatrist help my child succeed at school?

Dr. Feder is a nationally leading child psychiatrist with decades of experience and research in helping children with developmental and learning disabilities thrive. He can help you and your child prepare for school or academic changes with therapy sessions, counseling, and a variety of tools to increase interaction and connection with your child.

He provides school consultations and has existing relationships with many of the schools in the Solana Beach and throughout San Diego County.  He works with educators to teach them about the DIR/Floortime model and different approaches to working with children with special needs.

If you’re concerned about preparing your child to thrive in an educational setting, call Dr. Feder or schedule an appointment online today.