Tuesday, October 27, 2009

Teaching & Agenesis Corpus Callosum

A teacher is a careful observer of each
student and understands that every child
has their own personality, motivations,
strengths, weaknesses and gifts.

Getting to know each student is an especially
important part of what a good teacher does
in an effort to provide the best possible
instruction for the child to help him learn
to his greatest potential.

When a child has Agenesis of the Corpus
Callosum it can be confusing how to
effectively teach and help the child learn
not only for the child's teacher but for the
child's parents as well.

There is no way to predict how ACC or a corpus
callosum disorder will affect a person diagnosed
because ACC has a very broad range of effects.

There is also no set guidelines for how to teach
a child who has Agenesis of the Corpus Callosum.

Each person can be uniquely affected as a result
of having ACC. What works for one student in terms
of learning and education may not work for another
student with ACC.

It is extremely helpful to have teacher/parents
communication flowing regarding the child with
ACC to gain insight into how their child learns,
their strengths, weaknesses, what motivates the
child, etc. Anything that a parent can put into
writing about their child with ACC with respect
to helping their child learn in the classroom is
very valuable information for that child's teacher(s).

Some things that are mentioned often when a child
has Agenesis of the Corpus Callosum are:

  • A child may need A LOT of repetition to learn something.

  • It can sometimes take a child much longer to
    grasp a skill and it seems like all the
    repetition is going nowhere with no progress
    but one day it just clicks and they get it.
    It all comes together for them. They often
    times just really need that repetition to
    make the connection.

  • Sometimes children with ACC take things very
    literally. For example, "Wake up and smell the
    coffee" could be taken very literally by a
    person with ACC.

  • A child with ACC may struggle with social
    skills. A child may have trouble with making
    eye contact, showing empathy, reading and
    comprehending facial gestures.

  • Staying on task and focusing may be difficult
    for children with ACC.

  • Moving a child with ACC, who is not focusing
    well, to the front of the classroom may prove
    to be very beneficial.

  • A child who is having difficulty staying on task
    and focusing may also greatly benefit and
    require a one-on-one aide or a shared aide.
    Some parents have a child in school who has
    an aide in the classroom to help but the other
    kids are not aware that the aide is there for
    that child.

  • Receiving too much information at once may
    be difficult for a child with ACC. They may do
    wonderful with one or possibly two part
    directions but if you give too many
    directions at once they might become
    overwhelmed and not be able to follow
    through with everything being asked of

  • A child with ACC may require extra time to
    process information and need extra time to
    complete tests.

  • Children with ACC may have trouble with
    abstract reasoning. Keeping information
    presented as concrete as possible can help.

  • Children with ACC may learn more easily if
    what is being taught is broken down into
    smaller tasks.

  • Children with ACC may struggle with reading
    comprehension. They may read very well but
    find it difficult to remember what they
    just read.

  • Giving a child different ways to receive new
    information and new ways to express
    themselves may be exactly what the child
    needs in order to process the information
    better and express their knowledge. For
    example: a child may not do well with
    using a pencil and putting their thoughts
    into written words or they may not use a
    pencil or crayon well to draw a picture
    but if they are given other methods to
    use such as a computer (or whatever else
    is discovered) that child may be able to
    put together perfectly their own picture
    or thoughts or express themselves in a
    manner that is just right for them.
    Finding that way isn't always easy but
    it's always worth a try or two or ten.

  • A child with ACC may have trouble staying
    organized and may struggle to remember
    homework assignments. A homework log
    with all assignments can be helpful.

  • A child with ACC may find it very difficult
    to put their thoughts into words and struggle
    with handwriting and taking notes.
    Handwriting may be very slow for them.
    Allowing a child to use an Alphasmart in
    class or to type their assignments can be
    a tremendous help for a child who has ACC.

  • Children with ACC may have difficulty with
    math. Being able to use a calculator can be
    very helpful for the child who has ACC.

More Agenesis Corpus Callosum and Education
information can be found at the links below:

Teaching Resources

ACC Social Skills & Challenges

ACC & Me Children's Book

Considerations For Educators Of Students With ACC:
This document is written by Mr. McCallum and
he is a teacher who taught a child with ACC in
his classroom. He offers detailed and valuable
information. The web page version of this
document is no longer available. If you would
like to receive a copy of “Considerations For
Educators Of Students With ACC” by Mr. McCallum
please E-Mail me. In your e-mail it is helpful
to know if you are a parent or a teacher
requesting the information.


  1. My daughter has ACC, she is 4 and although she can draw a circle she still does not even draw a smiley face and still scribbles. She knows all of her numbers by sight and can count items as well as count to 25, but she only knows a few letters by sight. She seems to learn easily from educational movies and shows.

    She seems to have some issues with balance. She trips and falls and hits her head a lot which is a big concern.

    I homeschool so I want all of the help that I can get so that I can help her. This site was very helpful for me. Thanks!

    1. Hi Toni,

      I'm a homeschooler also. My son is 4 as well with ACC. He is just coming out of scribble mode. He knows all his letters but no numbers.


      I am really excited about your site. Thanks for the info regarding parent groups.

  2. Hi Toni,

    Thank you for your very thoughtful message. I'm so glad that you have found this site helpful. Thank you also for sharing a little bit about your 4 year old daughter who has ACC. It's wonderful that she knows all of her numbers, can count items, and knows how to count to 25. How fun that you're homeschooling, and I hope that it's been a very positive experience. Our local library became our greatest resource when we began homeschooling.

    If you are interested in receiving some information about ACC and Education as well as social skills challenges, please send me an e-mail and I will send the information directly to your e-mail.

    Also, there is a very good ACC support group that you might want to consider joining (if you aren't already involved) called the ACC Listserv.

    ACC Listserv e-mail support group

    The ACC Listserv group can put you in touch with hundreds of parents from all over the world who have a child with ACC, and they quite often discuss topics involving ACC and education.

    Again, thank you for your kind comment.



    e-mail: hope@aracnet.com

    *Mom to 19 year old son with ACC*


I am very interested in reading your comments and
look forward to hearing from you. Thank you.