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Monday, November 24, 2008

Scott's Reading Update

Since I've posted about Scott's reading, I've gotten more resources than I can process all at once. Pursuing most of them are being put on hold until after my exam.

I did call his homeschool evaluator the day I posted and brought her up-to-date. She said what I expected her to say: Scott's progressing, keep reading to him, and any tools you find for dyslexia (or learning disabilities) go ahead and use. For example, if you found out he was dyslexic you would use the transparent colored sheets, go ahead and give it a try. Her reassurance is good.

I finished reading Moby Dick to him. I also got Swiss Family Robinson and Journey to the Center of the Earth (Great Illustrated Classics Series) from the library and read both to him. He has great comprehension and makes some awesome conclusions as we discuss our reading. I enjoy reading to him. This series of books seems to be where he is at in comprehension and interest, so at least I've got a whole series to look forward to sharing with him. John's got a big history book he is reading to the boys. Go for it, John. Better you than me.

When I ask Scott to read he gets combative (for lack of a better word). I haven't felt like dealing with the challenge of his uncooperativeness; I have enough on my plate getting ready to test, so I've left that challenge alone.

After my test, I plan to get his eyes examined. I will muddle through the books and links that have been sent to me about the slow reader. I tend to be independent, so I will try a good deal at home before going for a diagnosis. That's just me. I will keep reading the Great Classics to him. I think he would be open to "spot" reviewing a little Hooked on Phonics. I have notebook dividers in various colors that can remove the glare from black letters on white paper. I'm keeping it simple right now until I can delve into the resources.

Now, 5-year-old David in the past week, is so proud of how he holds his pen and brought me a paper where he printed a bunch of digits. This skill he picked up on his own and let me emphasize that neither William or Scott ever picked up writing on their own (or progressed in independent reading without a big push). I wrongly imagined homeschooling to be full of Davids: learning and absorbing in optimal conditions. Scott learns other things quickly and I know his reading will catch up soon.


ScienceGeek said...

Many people feel that there are two types of dyslexia (if indeed that's what you're facing): visual dyslexia (trouble with eye tracking, glare, etc.), and auditory dyslexia. My son has the latter. We used the colored overlays for a while, but realized that it just wasn't doing it for him. While having his eyes checked did reveal that he is farsighted, and the glasses do help him with fine print, what has helped him tremendously is using an Orton-Gillingham approach to teaching him to read and spell. He has loved learning the different spelling rules (like which way to spell the "k" sound in the beginning, middle or end of a word, and what determines whether a vowel makes its "short" or "long" sound in a word). Now that he understands the reasons behind our crazy language, he is able to apply it. He even sat down, on his own, and wrote a story about the first Thanksgiving yesterday (it wasn't even a school day!). I hope you find that
"magic bullet" that works for your son!

Permission to Mother said...

Orton-Gillingham? What book or website do you recommend? He would like this. That's how he thinks.

ScienceGeek said...

There are many to choose from, and they are listed on the Bright Solutions for Dyslexia website. We chose to use the Barton Reading and Spelling System. The reason for this is that I read so many great reviews from other parents whose children had made great gains using this system. What is great about the Barton system is that each level (there are 10 levels...levels 9 and 10 are the Greek/Latin roots of words, and the influence of foreign languages and don't need to be taught until high school) comes with 2 "tutor training" CDs, wherein she demonstrates everything you need to know to implement the program. Also, Susan Barton, the developer, is available by email or phone if you have any questions. I've called her and spoken with her when my son has run into a road block, and gotten just the help I needed. She is an AWESOME resource. I hope to post a blog about using the O-G post soon, along with pictures to show what's involved in a lesson.

ScienceGeek said...

By the way, the website for the Bright Solutions for Dyslexia (a wealth of information and articles, plus links to more information) is:

Sarah said...

I'm a neurolinguist/speech pathologist. People I work with study dyslexia. Though I don't, I've had lots of experience with it from an academic and personal standpoint. It runs in my family :)

I subscribed to your blog after getting to it from notice of your book giveaway and was reading through old posts :) I just wanted to point out that dyslexia is usually considered to be a problem with phonological memory (trouble remembering or decoding/encoding the specific sounds). I think that website ScienceGeek posted says that in the NIH results list. Lots of the systems are helpful, but more because they just try something new, not because they're based on research or theory. They often work for a while until a ceiling is reached, and they're often pretty expensive. They might also work because a child isn't truly dyslexic and just learns differently. It's just a label, though dyslexia is pretty common.

The O-G method has been studied some, but I'm not too familiar with the results. It looks like it approaches the problem from lots of different ways, which is great. Here's another method has been shown to do really well--

I'm not affiliated with it at all. I just wanted to point it out. What's great is that it's really simple and directly addresses what researchers think is the underlying cause of dyslexia. The O-G method looks like it's great to address the range of problems that can develop, but early on, phonemic awareness is the best bet. Dyslexia is truly a linguistic problem.

Also, sorry for the long comment. Take it or leave it :)

Permission to Mother said...

Thanks Sarah!

By the time I get through reading all the resources for dyslexia/reading disability Scott will have probably figured reading out on his own. :) And I'll be an expert. :)

I appreciate your comments.

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