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Showing posts from August, 2015

Successful Educational Therapy Remediation: Learning How Each Student Thinks

Every student processes information and learns differently because we each have our own, individual cognitive makeup as well as strengths and weaknesses.  As a result, the key to successful remedial outcomes is to celebrate, understand, and accommodate the unique ways that each student thinks. How Can Educational Therapists and Learning Specialists Uncover How Each Student Thinks?

There are a number of things that professionals can do to reveal how each individual processes information.Read comprehensive psycho-educational evaluations and progress reports. Talk to parents, teachers and other professionals that know this student well.Ask the student.What Valuable Information Can Be Gained From Prior Testing and Reports?

A comprehensive psycho-educational evaluation can help uncover each student's strengths as well as their areas of challenge. On the one hand, by focusing on strengths, professionals can help students to develop compensatory learning strategies, so that they can learn…

Early Literacy: Letter, Number and Shape Challenges

Occasionally, I get inquiries from other learning specialists in the field that have difficult cases. Recently, a director of a tutoring academy asked me a question about a new student, and I thought I would share our correspondence for this week's blog post. Names have been altered to preserve anonymity.
Dear Erica:

I have a question about a new case. When I first contacted you about two years ago, it was because I had a little 5-year-old girl who was way behind. Your guidance really helped me. Anyway her first cousin has come to us. The girl turned 4 in June, and she is having a number of issues. She has no number recognition and no letter recognition, except the letter "A" - because her name is Alice. She does recognize most of the basic shapes. However, she can only trace, but not copy them. I asked her to write her name, but all letters were illegible - but the letter A. I'm not sure it was even her name. She knew all her colors, but blue, which she …

Slow and Labored Reading: Causes and Solutions for Dyslexia and More

Slow and labored reading can make schooling a drag for many bright students, and in order to truly help these struggling learners, teachers and support personnel need to understand the root causes. The problem is that each student has their own unique contributing factors. As a result, the best way to serve each student is to begin with an investigation.

What are the Three Main Causes of Slow and Labored Reading?
1) Cognitive - Deficits or weaknesses in key cognitive processing areas can point to a root cause of slow and labored reading. Common areas of deficit that can impact reading speed are:
Auditory processing Visual processingMemoryProcessing speedExecutive functioning and attention 2) Physical - Discomfort in the physical process can also make the process of reading difficult and it can minimize the practice needed. For some learners, the reading process is:
Exhausting: Some report that reading is wearisome for the eyes and can even make them feel sleepy.Uncomfortable and an…

Dyslexia Strategies: Improving Your Memory for Names

I think we are all familiar with the embarrassment of occasionally forgetting a person's name.  However, this is a common difficulty for individuals with dyslexia, and it is called a word retrieval or word finding difficulty. They may know someone's or something's name one day, but are unable to access the same information the next. What Causes One to Forget Names? There are four factors that can impact one's ability to encode and then retrieve a name.  Environmental Factors that impact the senses can pull one's attention away from a learning experience.Auditory distractions such as a noisy environment can make it difficult to encode new information.Visual distractions, like kids playing outside the window, can also pull one's attention away from the present moment.Physical distractions, such a a touch or someone jogging the table can also complete for one's attention.Olfactory distractions, like the smells of lunch cooking can also divert attention.Cogniti…