Adult Learning

4 Things Teachers Shouldn't Be Asking Their Students to Do

—Getty

By Justin Minkel

April 8, 2019

Spiderman’s Uncle Ben could have been speaking directly to teachers when he said, "With great power comes great responsibility."

As teachers, we can make kids do almost anything we want. They’re smaller than us. We have all kinds of power over them, from getting them in trouble at home to taking away the things that make school tolerable, like going outside for recess or sitting with their friends in class. But just because we can make our students do what we want doesn’t mean we should.

Children aren’t just smaller versions of adults. They are their own kind of being. They need to move, talk, question, and explore more than we do, because they’re in the midst of that mind-boggling explosion of cognitive, physical, and social-emotional growth that marks childhood in our species. When it comes to behaviors like staying quiet or sitting still, it doesn’t make sense to hold young children to norms better suited to adults, because the way they experience the world is fundamentally different from the way grownups do.

In school, we often ask children to do things that are unreasonable given their developmental level. Worse still, we sometimes ask them to do things we would never expect of adults.

Take these four examples.

1. Silence

Many schools expect a monastic code of silence while students are traveling the halls. The rationale makes sense at first glance, and it’s one I’ve explained to my class many times: "Other students are working right now, and we don’t want to disturb them."

Still, if I were a kid, I’d wonder: "If that’s true, why aren’t teachers silent in the hall?"

Every time I run into a colleague in the hallway, we talk together while we walk to wherever we’re going. We chat about anything and everything, from the chances we’ll get a snow day tomorrow to the latest season of "True Detective." This kind of conversation doesn’t seem to bother the kids working in classrooms off the hallway. Why would the voices of kids be any different?

Chatter in the hallways, or even the squeaking of wet shoes on the floor as a class returns from recess or P.E., doesn’t seem to bother most students. In fact, the only occasions when I’ve seen kids completely distracted by what’s happening out in the hall are those times when a teacher is reprimanding his or her class—often at a far greater volume than whatever commotion their students were causing to incur the reprimand.

We should take a close look at the times we expect kids to be silent in school. We need to distinguish between those times it’s truly for the good of the students, and when it has more to do with the appetite for control so deeply inculcated in adults placed in charge of children.

2. Sitting Still for a Long Time

Teacher Alexis Wiggins shadowed high school students for two days, doing whatever the students did, and was shocked at what she experienced.

"I literally sat down the entire day, except for walking to and from classes. We forget as teachers, because we are on our feet a lot—circling around the room to check on student work, kneeling down to chat with a student … we move a lot. But students move almost never. And never is exhausting."

For young kids, sitting still is even harder. There’s a lot we can do to make it easier on them.

• Build in strategies like Total Physical Response for learning vocabulary, so students are moving while they learn.

• Take brain breaks—including dance parties. There are plenty of great videos on websites like GoNoodle, or you can make up motions to classic children’s songs like Raffi’s "Biscuits in the Oven" and "Tingalayo."

• Let students get up—without raising their hand for permission—whenever they need to get a book from the class library, grab a pencil, or just stretch their legs for a minute.

• Above all, keep the teacher talk time to a minimum. A useful guideline is that students should be able to listen attentively for their age in minutes—five minutes for a kindergartner, 15 for a sophomore in high school. Save most of your words for conversations with students one-on-one or in a small group. Children, like adults, learn the most when they’re engaged in meaningful work—not sitting and listening while the teacher does all the talking and thinking.

3. Forced Apologies

I have definitely been guilty of this one. I’ll break up a heated argument, then immediately demand that one or both kids apologize to one another, while their faces are still flushed with emotion from their recent conflict.

The early-childhood program my daughter attended never made the children tell each other, "I’m sorry," because an apology extracted by an authority figure isn’t a true expression of remorse.

Forced apologies don’t seem to offer much satisfaction to the child who receives them, either—seeing the other child mutter "sorry" while glowering at his shoes pretty much never makes the recipient of the apology feel better.

Turbulent emotions take a long time to settle. We need to give kids that time.

4. Zero Tolerance for Forgetfulness

My friend and 1st grade teacher Cameron McCain has a great line when teachers start grumbling about our students: "It’s like we’re dealing with a bunch of 7-year-olds around here!"

His point is well taken. I get frustrated when Josh, who has been in my class for 17 months now, still forgets to check out a book or do his lunch choice when he gets to school. But like most adults I know, I’m a lot like Josh. I once turned on the coffeemaker without putting the coffeepot in first. (I didn’t realize what I’d done until hot, fragrant coffee started splattering onto my kitchen floor.)

I forget sometimes that not only are my students human, they’re really young humans. When they lose their lunch tag for the third day in a row, or ask the exact same questiontwo other kids asked 30 seconds ago, we need to take a deep breath and offer them a sizeable dollop of grace.

Kids Are Kids. That’s Exactly Who They Should Be

We need to think hard about the demands we place on our students. Just because they obey the strictures we lay down doesn’t mean those edicts are fair.

We can’t expect the children in our care to behave like miniature adults. They need to move around more than we do. They need to make more noise than we do. They need to experience new concepts with their fingers, senses, and imaginative ability to consider not just the world as it is, but as it could be. Their curiosity, enthusiasm, and sense of wonder will never lend itself to straight lines and silent deskwork.

We spend so much time bending them to our way of doing things. We should pay more attention to theirs.

Justin Minkel teaches 1st and 2nd grade at Jones Elementary in Springdale, Ark., a high-performing, high-poverty school where 85 percent of the students are English-language learners. A former Teach For America corps member, Minkel was the 2007 Arkansas Teacher of the Year. In his instruction, he is focused on bringing advanced learning opportunities to immigrant and at-risk students. Follow him at @JustinMinkel.

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FYI, You Can Watch Astronauts Read Popular Kids Books From Space

If you’re looking for a way to take story time up a notch with the kids in your life, why not turn to astronauts?

That’s the premise of Story Time from Space, a project from the nonprofit Global Space Education Foundation that features astronauts reading beloved children’s books from the International Space Station.

T2 SCIENCE & MATH EDUCATION

Story Time from Space is a project that features astronauts reading children's books from the International Space Station. 

Patricia Tribe, the former director of education at Space Center Houston who came up with the basis for the project, told HuffPost that the thought of merging space and reading came up after she did some research on literacy and science skills in the United States. She decided to merge STEM and literacy in a way that’s easily accessible for kids.

“What better role models to engage kids in science and to engage them in reading?” she said. “You’re not only looking and listening to the books, you’re looking around the International Space Station.”

Story Time from Space began with a pilot test from astronaut Benjamin Alvin Drew Jr., also known as Alvin Drew, who helped co-found the initiative with Tribe. He read Max Goes to the Moon, a book by astrophysicist and author Jeffrey Bennett, on the final flight of the space shuttle Discovery. Since the project’s official launch, other stories that have been told from space include Next Time You See a Sunset by Emily Morgan and Rosie Revere, Engineer by Andrea Beaty. The footage of the reading sessions are available on the Story Time from Space site and YouTube.

Watch astronaut Kate Rubins read Rosie Revere, Engineer below.

The Story Time from Space team, which includes astronauts, scientists, educators and others, has important guidelines when it comes to choosing the books. They have to be “neat” books that can be read in about 15 minutes, involve some sort of concept regarding STEM and, most important, be accurate.

“We don’t want to perpetuate any misinformation,” Tribe said.

The team members sometimes receive books from authors who want to be considered for the reading sessions. They also keep up with various lists and recommendations involving STEM-focused children’s books. When they have a group of books to consider, the team discusses why a title should or shouldn’t be part of a launch. One thing the team keeps in mind is having books that cover a wide range of age groups.

T2 SCIENCE & MATH EDUCATION

The selected books include Jeffrey Bennett's work about a dog named Max who loves space, among many other titles. 

Once the team selects the reading material and gets the approval for a launch, the books must go through the payload process at NASA and then have to be labeled, cleaned and sent to Florida for launch. An organization called CASIS(Center for the Advancement of Science in Space) helps with arranging the payloads and actually getting the books into orbit, and then once story time is over, there’s the video editing.

It can also take time to find available astronauts to read the books. Some volunteer, while others are requested because of their background in education or a similar specialty. Tribe also said her team strives to be diverse when it comes to who is telling the stories. For instance, she said she felt it was important for Rosie Revere, Engineer, a story about a girl with dreams to be an engineer, to be read by a woman working on the International Space Station. (Kate Rubins read it.) The site also includes two readings of Max Goes to the Space Stationone in English from astronaut Mike Hopkins, and one in Japanese from astronaut Koichi Wakata.

Tribe said the authors of the books selected have all been “fantastic,” just like the astronauts. According to the site, upcoming books include Mousetronaut by astronaut Mark Kelly and The Rhino Who Swallowed a Storm by “Reading Rainbow” host LeVar Burton and author Susan Schaefer Bernardo.

In addition to the reading sessions, the Story Time from Space team is preparing to add to its site footage of kid-friendly science experiments completed on the International Space Station. Its members are also working on a curriculum that coincides with the project and their research to share with educators and librarians.

With each new idea, Story Time from Space is showing kids that learning and literacy can also be entertainment.

“Everybody thinks space is pretty cool, so it’s a nice way to capture the audience and capture the kids so they are enjoying space,” Tribe said.

Reference

Why Millions Of Kids Can't Read And What Better Teaching Can Do About It

Jack Silva didn't know anything about how children learn to read. What he did know is that a lot of students in his district were struggling.

Silva is the chief academic officer for Bethlehem, Pa., public schools. In 2015, only 56 percent of third-graders were scoring proficient on the state reading test. That year, he set out to do something about that.

"It was really looking yourself in the mirror and saying, 'Which 4 in 10 students don't deserve to learn to read?' " he recalls.

Bethlehem is not an outlier. Across the country, millions of kids are struggling. According to the National Assessment of Educational Progress, 32 percent of fourth-graders and 24 percent of eighth-graders aren't reading at a basic level. Fewer than 40 percent are proficient or advanced.

One excuse that educators have long offered to explain poor reading performance is poverty. In Bethlehem, a small city in Eastern Pennsylvania that was once a booming steel town, there are plenty of poor families. But there are fancy homes in Bethlehem, too, and when Silva examined the reading scores he saw that many students at the wealthier schools weren't reading very well either.

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Silva didn't know what to do. To begin with, he didn't know how students in his district were being taught to read. So, he assigned his new director of literacy, Kim Harper, to find out.

The theory is wrong

Harper attended a professional-development day at one of the district's lowest-performing elementary schools. The teachers were talking about how students should attack words in a story. When a child came to a word she didn't know, the teacher would tell her to look at the picture and guess.

The most important thing was for the child to understand the meaning of the story, not the exact words on the page. So, if a kid came to the word "horse" and said "house," the teacher would say, that's wrong. But, Harper recalls, "if the kid said 'pony,' it'd be right because pony and horse mean the same thing."

Harper was shocked. First of all, pony and horse don't mean the same thing. And what does a kid do when there aren't any pictures?

This advice to a beginning reader is based on an influential theory about reading that basically says people use things like context and visual clues to read words. The theory assumes learning to read is a natural process and that with enough exposure to text, kids will figure out how words work.

Yet scientists from around the world have done thousands of studies on how people learn to read and have concluded that theory is wrong.

One big takeaway from all that research is that reading is not natural; we are not wired to read from birth. People become skilled readers by learning that written text is a code for speech sounds. The primary task for a beginning reader is to crack the code. Even skilled readers rely on decoding.

NPR ED

The Gap Between The Science On Kids And Reading, And How It Is Taught

So when a child comes to a word she doesn't know, her teacher should tell her to look at all the letters in the word and decode it, based on what that child has been taught about how letters and combinations of letters represent speech sounds. There should be no guessing, no "getting the gist of it."

And yet, "this ill-conceived contextual guessing approach to word recognition is enshrined in materials and handbooks used by teachers," wrote Louisa Moats, a prominent reading expert, in a 2017 article.

The contextual guessing approach is what a lot of teachers in Bethlehem had learned in their teacher preparation programs. What they hadn't learned is the science that shows how kids actually learn to read.

"We never looked at brain research," said Jodi Frankelli, Bethlehem's supervisor of early learning. "We had never, ever looked at it. Never."

The educators needed education.

Learning the science of reading

Traci Millheim tries out a new lesson with her kindergarten class at Lincoln Elementary in Bethlehem, Pa.

Emily Hanford/APM Reports

On a wintry day in early March 2018, a group of mostly first- and second-grade teachers was sitting in rows in a conference room at the Bethlehem school district headquarters. Mary Doe Donecker, an educational consultant from an organization called Step-by-Step Learning, stood at the front of the room, calling out words:

"Tell me the first sound you hear in 'Eunice'?"

"Youuu ... " the teachers responded.

Nope. "/Y/, /y/, before you get to the /oo/," Donecker explained. "How about "Charlotte?"

This was a class on the science of reading. The Bethlehem district has invested approximately $3 million since 2015 on training, materials and support to help its early elementary teachers and principals learn the science of how reading works and how children should be taught.

In the class, teachers spent a lot of time going over the sound structure of the English language.

Since the starting point for reading is sound, it's critical for teachers to have a deep understanding of this. But research shows they don't. Michelle Bosak, who teaches English as a second language in Bethlehem, said that when she was in college learning to be a teacher, she was taught almost nothing about how kids learn to read.

"It was very broad classes, vague classes and like a children's literature class," she said. "I did not feel prepared to teach children how to read."

Bosak was among the first group of teachers in Bethlehem to attend the new, science-based classes, which were presented as a series over the course of a year. For many teachers, the classes were as much about unlearning old ideas about reading — like that contextual-guessing idea — as they were about learning new things.

First-grade teacher Candy Maldonado thought she was teaching her students what they needed to know about letters and sounds.

"We did a letter a week," she remembers. "So, if the letter was 'A,' we read books about 'A,' we ate things with 'A,' we found things with 'A.' "

But that was pretty much it. She didn't think getting into the details of how words are made up of sounds, and how letters represent those sounds, mattered that much.

The main goal was to expose kids to lots of text and get them excited about reading. She had no idea how kids learn to read. It was just that — somehow — they do: "Almost like it's automatic."

Maldonado had been a teacher for more than a decade. Her first reaction after learning about the reading science was shock: Why wasn't I taught this? Then guilt: What about all the kids I've been teaching all these years?

Bethlehem school leaders adopted a motto to help with those feelings: "When we know better, we do better."

"My kids are successful, and happy, and believe in themselves"

Cristina Scholl, first-grade teacher at Lincoln Elementary, uses a curriculum that mixes teacher-directed whole-class phonics lessons with small-group activities.

Emily Hanford/APM Reports

In a kindergarten class at Bethlehem's Calypso Elementary School in March 2018, veteran teacher Lyn Venable gathered a group of six students at a small, U-shaped table.

"We're going to start doing something today that we have not done before," she told the children. "This is brand spanking new."

The children were writing a report about a pet they wanted. They had to write down three things that pet could do.

A little boy named Quinn spelled the word "bark" incorrectly. He wrote "boc." Spelling errors are like a window into what's going on in a child's brain when he is learning to read. Venable prompted him to sound out the entire word.

"What's the first sound?" Venable asked him.

"Buh," said Quinn.

"We got that one. That's 'b.' Now what's the next sound?"

Quinn knew the meaning of "bark." What he needed to figure out was how each sound in the word is represented by letters.

Venable, who has been teaching elementary school for more than two decades, says she used to think reading would just kind of "fall together" for kids if they were exposed to enough print. Now, because of the science of reading training, she knows better.

"My kids are successful, and happy, and believe in themselves," she said. "I don't have a single child in my room that has that look on their face like, 'I can't do this.' "

At the end of each school year, the Bethlehem school district gives kindergartners a test to assess early reading skills.

In 2015, before the new training began, more than half of the kindergartners in the district tested below the benchmark score, meaning most of them were heading into first grade at risk of reading failure. At the end of the 2018 school year, after the science-based training, 84 percent of kindergartners met or exceeded the benchmark score. At three schools, it was 100 percent.

Silva says he is thrilled with the results, but cautious. He is eager to see how the kindergartners do when they get to the state reading test in third grade.

"We may have hit a home run in the first inning. But there's a lot of game left here," he says.

Emily Hanford is a senior correspondent for APM Reports, the documentary and investigative reporting group at American Public Media. She is the producer of the audio documentary Hard Words, from which this story is adapted.

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https://www.apmreports.org/story/2018/09/10/hard-words-why-american-kids-arent-being-taught-to-read

Test and Evaluation

Testing and Evaluation

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When a child is struggling to read, someone will probably suggest that he or she be tested for dyslexia. What does it mean to be tested? You might think that of a test as something you take in an afternoon. Someone scores it and tells you how you did. Evaluation is a more accurate word to describe the process of determining if someone has dyslexia. The word evaluation encompasses identification, screening, testing, diagnosis, and all the other information gathering involved when the student, his or her family, and a team of professionals work together to determine why the student is having difficulty and what can be done to help.

Why is evaluation important?

An evaluation is the process of gathering information to identify the factors contributing to a student’s difficulty with learning to read and spell. First, information is gathered from parents and teachers to understand development and the educational opportunities that have been provided. Then, tests are given to identify strengths and weaknesses that lead to a diagnosis and a tentative road map for intervention. Conclusions and recommendations are developed and reported.

When a student is having difficulties with reading and spelling, an evaluation is important for three reasons.

  1. Diagnosis An effective evaluation identifies the likely source of the problem. It rules out other common causes of reading difficulties and determines if the student profile of strengths and weaknesses fit the definition of dyslexia.

  2. Intervention planning An effective evaluation develops a focused remedial program. Students who have a specific learning disability in reading (dyslexia) need a specialized approach to reading instruction to make progress. It is crucial that this specialized instruction begin at the student’s current level of reading skill development, rather than at the student’s grade level. An effective evaluation helps parents and teachers see which specific skills are weak and where reading and spelling instruction should begin.

  3. Documentation An effective evaluation documents the history of a student’s learning disability. One purpose of this documentation is to determine eligibility for special services, including special education. Documentation is also important for obtaining accommodations on college entrance exams (ACT, SAT), in college, or in the workplace.

When should a child be evaluated?

It is possible to identify potential reading problems in young children even before the problems turn into reading failure. Screening tests, such as Predictive Assessment of Reading (PAR); Dynamic Indicators of Basic Early Literacy Skills (DIBELS); Texas Primary Reading Inventory (TPRI); and AIMSweb screening assessments, developed by researchers for those purposes should be used with all children in a school, beginning in kindergarten, to locate those students who are “at risk” for reading difficulty. Preventive intervention should begin immediately, even if dyslexia is suspected. How the child responds to supplementary instruction will help determine if special education services are justified and necessary.

Before second grade, it is more important to focus an evaluation on the precursors of reading development. Measures of language skills, phonological awareness, memory, and rapid naming are more suggestive of being at-risk for dyslexia among young children than are measures of word reading, decoding, and spelling. Therefore, measures of phonological awareness, memory, and rapid naming are typically included in Kindergarten and beginning first grade screening tests that can identify children who need targeted intervention to improve these critical skills so these children can meet grade- level benchmarks. Although there are many tests that may be used early (in Kindergarten and beginning of first grade) to assess beginning skills in reading and spelling, the standards for average achievement are generous. A child in late kindergarten or early first grade may only need to read a few letters and two or three common words to score well enough to reach a score of “average.” Compared to other young learners, students with dyslexia may not seem to be “behind.” Further, even if achievement is found to be low or poor it does not explain why the child may not be learning as expected.

By January or February of first grade, tests of early word reading, decoding, and spelling begin to be useful in providing information about what the student has learned and what gaps in knowledge exist. This information may be used to plan instruction and guide ongoing assessment.

What should be included in the evaluation?

The following areas should be considered when carrying out an evaluation.

Background information

Information from parents and teachers tells us a lot about a student’s overall development and pattern of strengths and weaknesses. Because dyslexia is genetically linked, a family history of dyslexia indicates that a student is more likely to have dyslexia. A history of delayed speech or language also puts a child at-risk for reading difficulties. It is important to know the types and length of time of any interventions the student has

received at school, home, or through tutoring, as well as the student’s response to the intervention. School attendance problems should be ruled out. A history of poor attendance, alone, can explain an identified weakness in skill development.

Intelligence

Until recently, an intelligence test was considered to be a necessary part of the evaluation because the diagnosis of a learning disability was based on finding a significant difference between IQ and reading skill. Poor achievement despite average or better intelligence was considered a key indicator. Current regulations no longer require that such a discrepancy be present when making a diagnosis. This change in the regulations came about because many studies have shown that intelligence is not the best predictor of how easily a student will develop written language (reading and spelling) skills. Instead, oral language abilities (listening and speaking) are considered the best predictors of reading and spelling.

A formal measure of intelligence is not always needed to document average intellectual abilities. For younger children, parent information about language development and teacher information about the child’s ability to learn orally may indicate average intellectual abilities. For older students or adults, past achievement in school or work may indicate at least average intelligence.

Oral language skills

Oral language, simply stated, refers to our ability to listen to and understand speech as well as to express our thoughts through speech. Oral language is made up of low-level skills, such as recognizing and making the sounds within our speech, and higher-level skills, such as getting meaning by listening to someone speak or creating sentences to express thoughts. Students with dyslexia typically have adequate higher- level language skills. Indicators of higher-level oral language skills include being able to understand an age-appropriate story and spoken directions, to carry on a conversation, and to understand and use words that are age appropriate. If a student has average higher-level oral language skills but much difficulty developing written language (reading and spelling) skills, the need for evaluation for dyslexia is recommended.

Although students with dyslexia usually have strong higher-level language skills, they typically have problems (a deficit) in low-level language skills (see following section “Phonological processing”). This deficit limits the ability to learn to read and spell using the sounds of the language. Young children with dyslexia often have delays in language development, but their higher-level language skills are usually age- appropriate by the time they enter school. Difficulties with higher-level language skills suggest a need for a language evaluation by a speech-language pathologist to rule out language impairment.

Word recognition

Word recognition is the ability to read single printed words. It is also called word reading or word identification. Tests of word recognition require that students read individual words printed in a list. The student is not able to use cues, such as the meaning of a sentence, to help them figure out the word. Tests of word recognition that score both accuracy and the time it takes for the student to read the words (fluency) are particularly useful. Students with dyslexia often become accurate but are still very slow when reading words. Both accuracy and the speed of word reading can affect understanding what is read.

Decoding

Decoding is the ability to read unfamiliar words by using letter-sound knowledge, spelling patterns and chunking the word into smaller parts, such as syllables. Decoding is also called “word attack.” Decoding tests should use nonsense words (words that look like real words but have no meaning, such as frut or crin) to force the student to rely on these decoding skills rather than on memory for a word already learned.

Spelling

Tests of spelling measure the student’s ability to spell individual words from memory using their knowledge of, for example, letter-sound pairings, patterns of letters that cluster together to spell one sound (igh in high; oa in boat), the way plurals may be spelled (s, es, ies) and so on. Spelling is the opposite of word attack but is even more difficult. It requires separating out the individual sounds in a spoken word, remembering the different ways each sound might be spelled, choosing one way, writing the letter(s) for that sound and doing the same, again, for the next sound in the word. Spelling stresses a child’s short and long-term memory and is complicated by the ease or difficulty the child has in writing the letters, legibly and in the proper order. Spelling is usually the most severe weakness among students with dyslexia and the most difficult to remedy.

Phonological processing

Phonology is one small part of overall language ability. It is a low-level language skill in that it does not involve meaning. Phonology is the “sound system” of our language. Our spoken language is made up of words, word parts (such as syllables), and individual sounds (phonemes). We must be able to think about, remember, and correctly sequence the sounds in words in order to learn to link letters to sounds for reading and spelling. Good readers do this automatically without conscious effort. However, students with dyslexia have difficulty with identifying, pronouncing, or recalling sounds. Tests of phonological processing focus on these skills.

Automaticity/fluency skills

Students with dyslexia often have a slow speed of processing information (visual or auditory). Tasks measure Naming Speed (also called Rapid Automatic Naming). Sets of objects, colors, letters, and numbers are often used. These items are presented in rows on a card, and the student is asked to name each as quickly as possible. Naming speed, particularly letter naming, is one of the best early predictors of reading difficulties. Therefore, it is often used as part of screening measures for young children. Slow naming speed results in problems with developing reading fluency. It also makes it difficult for students to do well on timed tests. Students with both the naming speed deficit and the phonological processing deficit are considered to have a “double deficit.” Students with the double deficit have more severe difficulties than those with only one of the two.

Reading comprehension

Typically, students with dyslexia score lower on tests of reading comprehension than on listening comprehension because they have difficulty with decoding and accurately or fluently reading words. It is important, however, to be aware that students with dyslexia often have strong higher- level oral language skills and are able to get the main idea of a passage despite difficulty with the words. Further, reading comprehension tasks usually require the student to read only a short passage to which they may refer when finding the answers to questions. For these reasons, students with dyslexia may earn an average score on reading comprehension tests but still have much difficulty reading and understanding long reading assignments in their grade-level textbooks.

Vocabulary knowledge

It is important to test vocabulary knowledge, because vocabulary greatly affects understanding when listening or reading. Difficulties students with dyslexia might have had in learning language or with memory can affect the ability to learn the meanings of words (vocabulary). Independent reading is also an important means for developing new vocabulary. Poor readers, who usually read less, are likely to have delays in vocabulary development. It is important to note, however, that students with dyslexia may perform poorly on reading vocabulary tests because of their decoding problems and not because they don’t know the meaning of some words. For this reason, it is best to administer both a reading and listening vocabulary task to get a true measure of vocabulary knowledge.

The profile of strengths and weaknesses of an individual with dyslexia varies with age, educational opportunity and the influence of co-occurring factors such as emotional adjustment, ability to pay attention in learning situations, difficulties with health or motivation. Nevertheless, clusters of distinguishing characteristics are frequently noted.

Family History and Early Development

  • Reports of reading/spelling difficulties across generations in the family

  • Normal prenatal and birth history

  • Delays/difficulties acquiring speech/language

Early Childhood/Primary Grades

  • Difficulty with rhyming, blending sounds, learning the alphabet, linking letters with sounds

  • Difficulty learning rules for spelling–spell words the way they sound (e.g., lik for like); use the letter name to code a sound (lafunt for elephant)

  • Difficulty remembering “little” words–the, of, said–that cannot be “sounded out”

  • Listening comprehension is usually better than reading comprehension–may understand a story when read to him but struggles when reading the story independently.

Middle and Secondary School

  • Reluctant readers

  • Slow, word-by-word readers; great difficulty with words in lists, nonsense words and words not in their listening vocabulary

  • Very poor spellers–miscode sounds, leave out sounds, add or leave out letters or whole syllables

  • Non-fluent writers–slow, poor quality and quantity of the product

  • When speaking, may have a tendency to mispronounce common words (floormat for format); difficulty using or comprehending more complex grammatical structures

  • Listening comprehension is usually superior to performance on timed measures of reading comprehension (may be equivalent when reading comprehension measures are untimed)

  • Weak vocabulary knowledge and use

Outcomes of an evaluation

An evaluation should result in a written report. This report should detail the kinds of information collected. This includes information related to the family literacy history, any significant medical issues the child may have, prenatal and birth conditions, and preschool development, including language learning. The education history should include information on school attendance, tests administered and test scores. These scores should be stated as standard scores. Standard scores compare the learner to others of the same age or grade. This material should provide the framework for the detailed evaluation of relative strengths and weaknesses across the various skill areas assessed as well as the overall fit of all information with the typical profile of dyslexia for the child’s age. This should lead to a tentative diagnosis that states that the child’s ability to learn to read, write and spell does or does not appear to be related to dyslexia. The specific evidence that supports the diagnosis should be explained in the report.

Diagnosis

A diagnosis of dyslexia begins with the gathering of information gained from interviews, observations and testing. This information is collected by various members of a team that includes the classroom teacher(s), speech/language pathologist, educational assessment specialist(s), and medical personnel (if co-occurring difficulties related to development, health or attention are suspected).

The task of relating and interpreting the information collected should be the responsibility of a professional who is thoroughly familiar with the important characteristics of dyslexia at different stages in the development of literacy skills. This professional should also have knowledge of the influence of language development and behavior on literacy learning. Often, school psychologists and/or speech- language pathologists are responsible for this task.

CAUTION: An initial diagnosis of dyslexia should be offered only as a tentative conclusion based on the data available. A poor reader may appear to “fit the profile” of dyslexia. However, if the learner responds quickly to appropriate intervention, the source of the reading problem is more likely related to earlier educational opportunity than to problems in the child’s physical makeup that limit the ability to learn from the instruction provided. The ability of the learner to benefit from instruction that is focused on the basic skills that support reading and spelling provides valuable information necessary to support or reject the initial diagnosis.

Intervention planning

Finally, the report should identify instructional programs that appear to be appropriate in meeting the specific skill(s) gaps and weaknesses identified through the evaluation process. Many children have already mastered some beginning reading skills. Thus, it is not always necessary or reasonable for a child to be placed in the very beginning lessons of a program. Although some programs have a placement test which helps the teacher to know where instruction should begin, many do not. For this reason, information about the child’s specific skill needs should be detailed in the report to assist in identifying the starting point for instruction. Recommended programs or intervention strategies should be consistent with the types of content and methods that research has shown to be effective for students with dyslexia and other poor readers. If warranted, a recommendation for further testing–vision, hearing, fine motor control (occupational therapy), attention, emotional adjustment–might also be included.

Documentation

The evaluation report should provide the documentation necessary to determine eligibility for special services, including special education. The specific guidelines for determining eligibility are based on federal regulations set forth by IDEA. It is important to note, however, that the specific criteria, such as cutoff scores for eligibility vary from state to state.

The parent or guardian of a child with dyslexia must advocate for the best possible educational opportunities for that child. Effective advocacy requires understanding the diagnostic report and knowing the child’s rights under the law. Information on related topics, such as teaching methodologies, accommodations, and instructional modifications are available in other IDA fact sheets.

The International Dyslexia Association (IDA) thanks Diane J. Sawyer, Ph.D., and Karen M. Jones, Ed.S., NCSP, for their assistance in the preparation of this fact sheet.

© Copyright The International Dyslexia Association (IDA). For copyright information, please click here.

Why Smart Kids shouldn't use laptops in class

For the past 15 years, educators have debatedexhaustivelythe perils of laptops in the lecture hall. Professors complain that laptops are distraction machines; defenders say that boring classes are to blame — students have always doodled or daydreamed, so what’s the difference that they’re browsing Facebook instead?

The remarkable thing about all the fuss is that, until now, there hasn’t been really great data on how classroom computing affects learning. There have been some small-scale, short-term experiments. A 2003 study found that laptops make it harder for students to remember what they had just learned in lecture. A 2014 study showed that students are less likely to understand complex ideas when they are forced to take notes by computer instead of by hand. But these were all contrived situations involving immediate recall. It’s less clear how laptop use affects students over the course of a semester.

Now there is an answer, thanks to a big, new experiment from economists at West Point, who randomly banned computers from some sections of a popular economics course this past year at the military academy. One-third of the sections could use laptops or tablets to take notes during lecture; one-third could use tablets, but only to look at class materials; and one-third were prohibited from using any technology.

Unsurprisingly, the students who were allowed to use laptops — and 80 percent of them did — scored worse on the final exam. What’s interesting is that the smartest students seemed to be harmed the most.

Among students with high ACT scores, those in the laptop-friendly sections performed significantly worse than their counterparts in the no-technology sections. In contrast, there wasn’t much of a difference between students with low ACT scores — those who were allowed to use laptops did just as well as those who couldn’t. (The same pattern held true when researchers looked at students with high and low GPAs.)

These results are a bit strange. We might have expected the smartest students to have used their laptops prudently. Instead, they became technology’s biggest victims. Perhaps hubris played a role. The smarter students may have overestimated their ability to multitask. Or the top students might have had the most to gain by paying attention in class.

The size of the laptop disadvantage was modest. The average score on the final was 72 out of 100, and students in sections with laptops scored about 1.7 points lower. But it’s hard to understand what 1.7 points means without knowing how bunched up or far apart people’s test scores were. (For the stats-savvy, the effect size was about 0.2 standard deviations.)

So here’s another way to think about it. The average score on the math section of the SAT last year was 511 out of 800. The difference between exam grades in the laptop-friendly sections and exam grades in the no-laptop sections is equivalent to the difference between scoring a 511 and scoring a 491 on the SAT’s math section. (That’s roughly the same boost a high school studentmight expect from hiring an SAT tutor.)

The researchers — Susan Payne Carter, Kyle Greenberg and Michael Walker — were also surprised to find that the tablet-only sections did just as poorly as the laptop-friendly sections. Even though students were not allowed to check email or play games on the tablets, the technology still seemed to interfere with their learning.

Still, these results are probably on the optimistic side. At West Point, sections are capped at 18 students, so the instructors could easily call out people who were obviously goofing off on their laptops. The problem of computer distraction is probably much more severe at other colleges, where lectures might hold hundreds of students.

The West Point study has lessons even for those whose baccalaureate days are far behind them. This is yet more evidence that multitasking doesn’t work. Beware of people who take laptops into meetings — even “just to take notes.”They’re probably not listening to you.

https://www.washingtonpost.com/news/wonk/wp/2016/05/16/why-smart-kids-shouldnt-use-laptops-in-class/

15 Funny things Over Heard in the Classroom by Jodi Teachers Pay Teachers

When kids have something to say, they say it. Get a load of these hilarious gems, straight from the mouths of the tiniest comedians:

1. “I can’t read right now. I have heartburn.”

2. “It must be really hard to be talking and know that no one is listening to you.”

3. “I’m going to shave my beard when I go home tonight.” (1st grader)

4. “I didn’t know you bought groceries!”

5. “My mom got the fat sucked out of her belly today, so we have to leave her alone in bed for a few days.”

6. “Are pickles made from an alligator’s skin?”

7. “Your hand sanitizer does NOT taste like apples.”

8. “The government should postpone the media shower until next week so more people can watch it.”

9.  “My water broke.”(5-year-old boy)

10. “Ms. S, why aren’t you married? Is it because you’re in high school?”

11. “Do you need to get your zen on?”

12. “So, am I a placenta?”

13. “Sorry I was late to school again. My mom had the runs this morning.”

14. “Mrs. O, what are you gonna be when you grow up?”

15. “I already know Kindergarten. I Googled it.”

Why its important to be the squeaky wheel to get the oil!

How School Systems Create *That* Parent for Children in Special Education

Demanding. Annoying. Angry. Unrealistic. Unreasonable. Every teacher, principal, and school district administrator knows *that* parent. In special education, there are much greater numbers of *that* parent, and I'm sure school systems feel irritated and challenged by the threats of law suits and seemingly endless fights over Individualized Education Plan (IEP) goals. But do they realize their role in creating *that* parent?

In an earlier post, I begged teachers not to force parents to become *that* parent, explaining that all parents, and especially those of children with special needs, want to be liked and work in partnership with their children's teachers. The incident I cited was the failure of a special education teacher to communicate with the parents of a non-verbal child, or even to answer their emails asking about the child spending time in a "quiet room" and the lack of a behavior plan for its use.

After five emails, the teacher responded and offered to meet. The meeting consisted of her pulling the child's mother aside during pick up time to reassure her that the room was actually more of a closet with a door that didn't lock, that the child chose to go to the room, and that it helped to regulate his behavior.

These parents are so polite and accommodating that they accepted the explanation and decided to wait a few days before requesting a more formal meeting. They had arranged for a visit from a specialist in teaching reading to non-verbal children, and she was coming that week to train the special education classroom teacher. These trainings were part of the child's IEP. Except the training didn't happen because the school failed to arrange for a sub. Instead, the school district special education department suggested a classroom aide could be trained. But it is not legal for anyone other then a special education teacher to carry out the instructional minutes mandated by the IEP. So no, that didn't happen.

Now the parents transitioned from being nice to being extremely angry and frustrated. Now they became *that* parent. Yes, they admit their child can be difficult and they are aware of his behavioral challenges. But they also know their child is capable of learning and can actually read. His capacity to learn is demonstrated in private therapy and at home. Just not at school. In short, he has been deprived of years of education by a school system mainly focused on his behavior and managing it.

In her blog Let's Be Blunt: The Illusion of Inclusion, Karen Copeland writes about how parents of children receiving special education services evolve into angry parents:

"We are told we need to stay calm and polite in meetings in order to be respectful. The challenge is that these very systems have set us up and created us to be these angry parents by virtue of the fact that we have had to fight so long and so hard to get our children and families even a fraction of the accommodations and support we need."

Copeland shares the journey of many parents of children with special needs in our public schools:

  • The frustration of not being informed about or consulted when important decisions are made for their children, despite assurances at IEP meetings that they are valuable partners.
  • The need to advocate constantly for the extra support their children require, the support promised to them by law under the Individuals with Disabilities Education Act (IDEA).
  • The isolation their families experience in the school setting as parents of typically developing children ignore them and complain that their children are taking too much teacher time and too many resources.
  • The lack of appropriate support and learning adaptations for children placed in general education classrooms without access to resource rooms and specialized teaching.

Like all parents, those of children with special needs want their kids to succeed and live up to their potential. They also have dreams for their children and believe their children are capable of learning at their own pace. Like the parents of the child spending time in the "quiet room" closet and being denied appropriate educational interventions, they try to supplement what the school fails to provide.

Copeland reminds us that schools should never give up on a child regardless of age. "How many people would write off their own child if he/she was different?"

A school psychologist commented on my earlier blog, "Please be *that* parent. Your child deserves no less, and your special education team needs the feedback to support your child's success." Speaking on behalf of all parents of children receiving special education services, I am asking school districts to collaborate, communicate, and consult rather than evade, fight, and blame. Try it. I'm sure fewer folks will become *that* parent.

Demanding. Annoying. Angry. Unrealistic. Unreasonable. Every teacher, principal, and school district administrator knows *that* parent. In special education, there are much greater numbers of *that* parent, and I'm sure school systems feel irritated and challenged by the threats of law suits and seemingly endless fights over Individualized Education Plan (IEP) goals. But do they realize their role in creating *that* parent?

In an earlier post, I begged teachers not to force parents to become *that* parent, explaining that all parents, and especially those of children with special needs, want to be liked and work in partnership with their children's teachers. The incident I cited was the failure of a special education teacher to communicate with the parents of a non-verbal child, or even to answer their emails asking about the child spending time in a "quiet room" and the lack of a behavior plan for its use.

After five emails, the teacher responded and offered to meet. The meeting consisted of her pulling the child's mother aside during pick up time to reassure her that the room was actually more of a closet with a door that didn't lock, that the child chose to go to the room, and that it helped to regulate his behavior.

These parents are so polite and accommodating that they accepted the explanation and decided to wait a few days before requesting a more formal meeting. They had arranged for a visit from a specialist in teaching reading to non-verbal children, and she was coming that week to train the special education classroom teacher. These trainings were part of the child's IEP. Except the training didn't happen because the school failed to arrange for a sub. Instead, the school district special education department suggested a classroom aide could be trained. But it is not legal for anyone other then a special education teacher to carry out the instructional minutes mandated by the IEP. So no, that didn't happen.

Now the parents transitioned from being nice to being extremely angry and frustrated. Now they became *that* parent. Yes, they admit their child can be difficult and they are aware of his behavioral challenges. But they also know their child is capable of learning and can actually read. His capacity to learn is demonstrated in private therapy and at home. Just not at school. In short, he has been deprived of years of education by a school system mainly focused on his behavior and managing it.

In her blog Let's Be Blunt: The Illusion of Inclusion, Karen Copeland writes about how parents of children receiving special education services evolve into angry parents:

"We are told we need to stay calm and polite in meetings in order to be respectful. The challenge is that these very systems have set us up and created us to be these angry parents by virtue of the fact that we have had to fight so long and so hard to get our children and families even a fraction of the accommodations and support we need."

Copeland shares the journey of many parents of children with special needs in our public schools:

  • The frustration of not being informed about or consulted when important decisions are made for their children, despite assurances at IEP meetings that they are valuable partners.
  • The need to advocate constantly for the extra support their children require, the support promised to them by law under the Individuals with Disabilities Education Act (IDEA).
  • The isolation their families experience in the school setting as parents of typically developing children ignore them and complain that their children are taking too much teacher time and too many resources.
  • The lack of appropriate support and learning adaptations for children placed in general education classrooms without access to resource rooms and specialized teaching.

Like all parents, those of children with special needs want their kids to succeed and live up to their potential. They also have dreams for their children and believe their children are capable of learning at their own pace. Like the parents of the child spending time in the "quiet room" closet and being denied appropriate educational interventions, they try to supplement what the school fails to provide.

Copeland reminds us that schools should never give up on a child regardless of age. "How many people would write off their own child if he/she was different?"

A school psychologist commented on my earlier blog, "Please be *that* parent. Your child deserves no less, and your special education team needs the feedback to support your child's success." Speaking on behalf of all parents of children receiving special education services, I am asking school districts to collaborate, communicate, and consult rather than evade, fight, and blame. Try it. I'm sure fewer folks will become *that* parent.

Laurie Levy  Huffington Post

The Tutoring Trend

Experts estimate that millions of youngsters, some as young as 4, are being tutored — to stay on par with peers, compensate for a learning disability, boost their scores on high-stakes assessment tests required for promotion or acceptance into gifted/talented programs, or simply to grab that competitive edge. And not surprisingly, in this, as in just about every parenting issue, experts are at odds over whether all this extra work is such a good idea.

A Brave New World
In the last decade, as education has zoomed to the top of the national agenda and demand for higher standards and more accountability on the part of schools has increased, tutoring little kids has become big business. Many parents are opting to supplement their children's education with outside assistance, whether in the form of private help with a moonlighting or retired teacher, college student or recent grad, or small classes at one of the national chains. The largest, Sylvan Reading Systems, has 950 centers in the U.S. and Canada; other big players include Huntington Learning Centers and Kumon Math & Reading Centers.

What's more, test-preparation giants such as The Princeton Review and Kaplan (with 150 centers in 11 states), long aimed at college-bound high school students, report a surge in demand for their services at the elementary school level. Both companies now run publicly funded tutoring programs in city schools as well as online programs, complete with access to 24-hour-a-day tutors, for children as young as kindergarten.

That Competitive Edge
Perhaps it's not surprising that, in an age when the college admissions frenzy causes angst even in families still buying diapers, some parents of kids who are doing just fine feel compelled to seek help so that they can do even better.

"There is nothing wrong with tutoring in principle," says Kathy Hirsh-Pasek, Ph.D., co-author of Einstein Never Used Flashcards: How Our Children Really Learn and Why They Need to Play More and Memorize Less and a professor at Temple University in Philadelphia. "But what I'm hearing today is that children are being coached to get into the right preschool. This generation of parents believes it's never too early to start academic learning — and that you must grab every opportunity. But childhood is not a race; it's a journey. And faster isn't always better."

When Tutoring Can Help
On the other hand, tutoring for the right reasons can spell the difference between a child who flounders and one who flourishes. "While the major work of learning takes place in school, a qualified tutor — working in tandem with the teacher — can perform a valuable function in helping to reinforce a child's reading and writing skills and apply them to homework assignments, as well as introduce study and organization skills," says Sally Shaywitz, M.D., co-director of the Yale Center for the Study of Learning and Attention and author of Overcoming Dyslexia.

In fact, for many kids it's not only appropriate, but necessary to have a tutor. "When specific, basic skills are not developing as you would expect, or when a child has a diagnosed learning disability, having a tutor can help her build those special skills or compensate for the ones she lacks," says learning specialist Susan J. Schwartz, M.A. Ed., clinical coordinator at the Institute for Learning and Academic Achievement at the New York University Child Study Center.

For time-crunched parents, themselves baffled by their kid's homework, or those whose child has a learning disability, a qualified tutor can personalize lessons to accommodate learning style, boost self-esteem, and end the nightly battles over homework. It's a boon, as well, for children lost in the shuffle of the large class sizes all too common in today's public schools.

Source: http://www.scholastic.com/parents/resources/article/homework-project-tips/tutoring-trend

I found this article fairly accurate!

20 Things to Remember If You Love a Person With Dyslexia

It’s hard to understand it, isn’t it?

If you’re not one of the ten to fifteen percent of the population with dyslexia, it’s really hard to understand what it’s like.

It’s easy to think that it’s a bit of a scam. That if people with dyslexia worked harder, and really applied themselves, they could “get over it.” But that’s not the case.

Life is actually much more difficult for people with dyslexia. They have brilliant minds, but they’re hard to focus.

Dyslexia is a gift—the gift of being able to see things from lots of different points of view, all at once. But the gift comes with a curse, and the curse is that it’s hard to prioritize, or make sense of, all those perspectives.

People with dyslexia can be hard to live with, and hard to love, because their brains work so differently to ours. Even if you love someone with dyslexia, the day-to-day living with it can drive you insane. Because they can forget things, believe they’ve said or done things they haven’t, be incredibly messy and disorganized, and be less socially aware than other people.

The best thing you can do is to understand more about dyslexia, so you’re less exasperated and more sympathetic.

This is an insight into how their minds work.

1. They have lifestyle challenges.

Dyslexia is much more than just having difficulty reading, writing, and using numbers. They see the world in a completely different way, communicate differently, and have trouble organizing things.

Some people describe it as a lifestyle challenge, others as a lifestyle curse, because it affects almost all aspects of their lives.

2. They can seem weird.

Despite their high intelligence, and because they see so many different perspectives at once, they can appear incoherent in conversation. They can come out with strange ideas, and lack the ability to check if their thoughts are suitable for conversation. They can seem almost autistic because they’re often unaware of social rules.

3. They find details exhausting.

Because their brain is less efficient at processing letters and sounds, it has to work harder—much harder. So any time spent reading, using numbers, or focusing on details is really, really exhausting.

4. They function differently on different days.

Some days they seem to function better than others, and can appear to be improving. Other days, it’s like everything is getting worse. There’s no reason, and no pattern. It just is.

 

 

 

5. They are highly creative.

Their ability to view the world from all perspectives makes them highly creative. They can come up with wildly creative ideas, partly because they’re not constrained by the laws of physics, mathematical logic, or the impossible.

6. They see things that others don’t.

Like words moving on the page, or even off the page, and letters flipping about. You know how challenging it can be to read letters and numbers incaptcha? Imagine reading a whole book like that. Or reading a book through a magnifying lens that a child is holding, and moving about.

They can even see the word cat more than 40 different ways.

7. They get overwhelmed by what they see.

They see so many possibilities that their thoughts can become garbled and distorted. It’s hard to sort through all that information and work out what’s important or appropriate. Without the ability to filter, this special gift becomes a tragic, confusing, disability.

8. They are more likely to have ADD.

People with dyslexia are more likely to have ADD. About 40% of people with dyslexia have ADD, and 60% of people with ADD have dyslexia.

9. They can experience thoughts as reality.

They can fully believe they’ve told you something, that they haven’t, or swear that you haven’t told them something that you have.

Often they express themselves in such a unique way that their message hasn’t come across coherently. And they may not realize that this aspect of their communication is part of their dyslexia.

10. They may not know they have dyslexia.

According to the Mayo Clinic, dyslexia can go undiagnosed for years, and may not be recognized until adulthood. This is one reason why it’s hard to calculate the number of people with dyslexia. And, unfortunately, people with undiagnosed dyslexia often label themselves as stupid or slow.

11. They think in pictures instead of words.

Not surprisingly, they tend to be highly visual, think in pictures, and utilize visual aids to help them plan and organize their lives. Rather than using self-talk, their thought processes are more subliminal. Most people with dyslexia are not even aware that they do this.

12. They will always have dyslexia.

They can learn to read and spell, but they will always have dyslexia. To make life easier, a font and a dictionary specifically for people with dyslexia are on the way.

The font is designed to avoid confusion, and add clarity, while the dictionary will favor meaning over alphabetical order.

13. They use their brain differently.

People with dyslexia don’t use their brain the same way that most of us do. Their brain underutilizes the left hemisphere—the area required for reading—and the bridge of tissue between the two sides of the brain (the corpus callosum) doesn’t function in the same way. So, their brain doesn’t always direct information to the correct place for processing.

14. They get it from their family.

Dyslexia is inherited, and most people with dyslexia have an aunt or uncle, or a parent or grandparent with dyslexia. Scientists have discovered that the DCD2 appears to be a dyslexia gene.

15. They often have low self-esteem.

People with dyslexia are just as intelligent as the rest of us. And they’re fully aware that other people can read and write much more easily than they can. So they feel stupid compared to other people.

As Albert Einstein said:

“Everybody is a genius. But if you judge a fish by it’s ability to climb a tree, it will live it’s whole life thinking it’s stupid.”

16. They have different symptoms.

Dyslexia is a tricky thing, because no two people have the exact same symptoms. Some lose things, or have poor organization skills. Some are slow at reading or have poor comprehension. Some may have difficulty organizing ideas to write, or have difficulty processing auditory information. Some also have difficulty sequencing the days of the week, or months of the year.

17. They are full of contradictions.

They may be highly aware of their environment, but appear lost. They may recognize, or read, a word on one page but be unable to recognize it on the next. Their brains are often very fast, but they appear slow, because they’re filtering through all the possibilities that they see.

18. They have great strengths.

People with dyslexia are often very good at reading people, and have great people skills. They usually have fantastic memories, and rely on them. They’re often good at spoken language, and frequently spatially talented (think architects, engineers, artist and craftspeople). They are highly intelligent, and intuitive, with vivid imaginations.

19. They can be incredibly successful.

People with dyslexia can be incredibly successful, often because of their dyslexia.

Famous people with dyslexia include entertainers like Whoopi Goldberg, Jay Leno, Henry Winkler, Danny Glover and Cher. As well as artists like Leonardo da Vinci, Tommy Hilfiger, Andy Warhol and Pablo Picasso.

Carole Grieder and Baruj Benacerraf utilized their dyslexia to become Nobel prize-winning scientists. People with dyslexia also go on to be writers and journalists like Scott Adams (of Dilbert), Agatha Christie, F Scott Fitzgerald, and Fannie Flagg (the author of Fried Green Tomatoes at the Whistle Stop Café).

20. They can change the world.

People with dyslexia can, and have changed the world. People like George Washington, Richard Branson, Henry Ford and Stephen Spielberg have changed, and continue to change, the world we live in.

People with dyslexia are kind, creative, highly intelligent beings who are just as frustrated at their inabilities as you are. They just can’t take a break from the way their minds work.

Instead they rely on the people that love them to help them interpret the world, and to help them function in a world that’s not adjusted to their needs.

Yes, they can be frustrating to love at times, but they have incredible, unique, world-changing gifts.

With your help, maybe the person you love can change the world too.

Featured photo credit: US Department of Education via Flickr via flickr.com

http://yourmedicalguide.info/

Exercise promoting kids to read more!

This article demonstrates how creative teachers can be to inspire kids to read! Most adults that go to the gym and use the cardio machines and read while getting their exercise. This teacher thought it would be great to transfer this into the classroom to see if it would work with kids!

www.upworthy.com