The NLP principle of chunking information is described here and, as mentioned in that entry, it’s good for your memory. But NLP and chunking information is also beautifully used and usable in helping people deal with learning difficulties. How? Here’s the lowdown:
If you’re helping yourself or another person to deal with learning difficulties, the key in dealing with learning difficulties is knowing the specific problem the affected person has. Specific is the reflection of our neuro-linguistic programming of chunking down = from general concepts to specifics / details. And speaking of linguistic, other words that will help you get the details are: ingredients, components, constituents, parts, elements. Since people with learning difficulties are immensely creative, often highly artistic, and definitely immensely quick thinkers, their style of thinking [of course, this is always context specific, but I’m referring to the generally prevalent bias in style of thinking in the grand scheme of life] tends to be that of chunking up, i.e. producing whole, large, abstract concepts first and then, if ever, attending to the details. Did you notice the linguistics in the previous sentence? Whole, large, abstract, concept, plus the words principle, theme, essence, idea are the language of NLP chunking up.
Once you know that the key in dealing with learning difficulties is knowing the specific problem the affected person has, couch your questions to get at the details as specific and precise as possible. If you’re dealing with a person with ADHD tendencies, ask questions like:
- How many screens do you see in your imagination [visual field] at the same time?
- What would be an example of what you see [in your head / mind’s eye / photographic memory / imagination / visual field]?
- What would this allow you to do / see?
- How many parts of x do you see?
- Which specific parts are moving / still / smaller / larger / in color / black and white / farther / nearer?
- How specifically are the letters on the page moving when you look at them? Describe the shape / direction / speed of the movement…
- What exactly do you see in your head / mind’s eye / photographic memory / behind your eyelids / imagination / visual field when you close the book / put down the page you were reading and can’t remember what you read?
- What specifically is happening in your head / mind / imagination at this moment?
- which letters give the person the most trouble
- which specific words the person finds impossible to spell every time no matter how many times s/he has seen the words before
- which letters in a specific word keep fading / turning / jumping / moving otherwise / swapping…
- which letters this person must imagine highlighted in a different color from the rest of the letters in that word in order to remember these problematic letters.