A remedial activity is one that is meant to improve a learning skill or rectify a problem area. Remedial instruction involves using individualized teaching of students who are experiencing difficulties in specific subject areas. Remedial instruction might be taught individually or in groups and targets academic weaknesses that may hinder learning. Remedial activities teach basic skills that are the foundation for learning a subject in greater detail, and such skills must be learned before students can develop a detailed understanding of the topic of study.

Learning Basic Skills

Students who do not have basic math and reading skills will benefit from attention to remedial activities in the classroom. Using phonics, Dolch words or basic multiplication tables as teaching tools will give students the basic skills they need to advance to a higher academic level.


Students who have been out of school over summer, winter or spring breaks may benefit from remedial teaching over a week or more to reinforce skills they lost due to extended time away from school. Teachers might use flashcards, games or fun activities involving phonics and basic math to help students get back on the learning path.

Help for Dyslexia

According to research from Carnegie Mellon University, remedial reading instruction can help students with dyslexia overcome their reading difficulties by helping to rewire brain connections. The study, published in the August 2008 issue of the journal "Neuropsychologia," showed that 100 hours of remedial instruction is enough to help students with reading deficits related to dyslexia increase neural connections and increase reading proficiency over the long term.

Communication Skills

Students who suffer from speech disorders may have trouble with communication in the classroom. Speech disorders are often developmental and may respond to remedial reading instruction. Teaching reading using phonics and sounding-out activities may help students with communication issues from speech-related problems become more academically proficient.

Behavior and Motivation

Students who fall behind due to the inability to perform even the most basic tasks in the classroom may develop behavior problems because of their frustration levels. This can also lead to a lack of motivation and the desire to give up altogether. Teaching remedial activities will help students gain general knowledge that can be applied to all subject areas and help reduce feelings of inadequacy that lead to behavior or motivation issues.