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?I have questions about ds testing and possible convergence?


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I have a few questions for you moms in the know. I’ve talked here before about the many ups and downs my ds 10 has had in his diagnostic path thus far. Basically ds is either ADHD combined, SPD, Verbally Autistic, PDD-NOS or Asperger or a combination of two or more of these dxes. The last doctor to see ds was a pediatric Neuropsyc. gave us ZERO help.


So we called my oldest ds’s psychologist in hopes that he could help us, a real long shot. He specializes in gifted kids not autistic kids. At any rate he gave ds the wisc-iv and the Woodcock-Johnson III Normative. The same two tests ds took when he was 6 and was labeled ADHD combined and MR. It took ds 3 ½ hours over three sessions to finish the testing. The longest the psychologist has ever had the privilege of administering.


His results were well… hard to swallow for one. We knew something was fishy, but these scores really made me want to cry. My poor boy. My gifted ds has on many occasions complained about how his little brother knows so much more then him and is so much smarter then he is. And in some ways I'd probably agree, but ds 10 struggles so much with, well, everything. If you look at the raw score he’s an incredibly average kid with a score of 116 not our uber bright, completely clueless joy-boy.


His VCI was in the 96th%, PRI 55th%, WMI 18th%, PSI 2nd%. When he did the Woodcock-Johnson he showed signs of being both gifted and mentally retarded.


With his broad reading @7.8 GE & his brief reading @9.5 GE while his broad writing scores were @ 2.7 GE & brief writing @2.4 GE, written expression was 1.9 GE. His academic fluency was 2.8 GE and writing fluency was 1.9 GE.


His math was closer to age level with broad math @ 5.1 GE and brief math @5.7 GE Calculation skills @4.2 but the math fluency dips down to 2.7 GE.

He told us that ds needs lots of work on processing (duh). So he wants us to do timed 1st grade math and copy work (alphabet) every day (15 min. 5 times a day). I guess I can see how this might help with speed. But what has me concerned is that he said ds may have some convergence with his eyes. We’ve made an appointment with a specialist for next month. They will call us with any cancellations (praying we get in sooner).


I guess my questions are:

How can my ds be able to answer some of the college level reasoning questions accurately on these tests while missing several of the simple first and second grade level questions?


How can he misspell beautiful and write his sentences in below 2 grade level penmanship when he can spell obliterate correctly to his little brother on the way to this test?


How can he have convergence issues if he can read at a 7-9th grade level? How could he have even learned to read at all?


How could he have done so poorly on the block puzzle and coding when he is a genius with Legos? He kept looking at these puzzles from different angles trying to figure out what the psychologist wanted from him.


Why are his calculative skills nearly a full grade lower than his other math skills?


Of course I have lots of questions about what I should expect from the specialist… but mostly I don’t even know what questions to be asking in that area. So any advice period would be greatly appreciated.

I guess that’s everything, at least for the moment. Oh, and sorry for the longish rambles. Thank you ladies.


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Uneven scores like that are typical of '2E' kids - bright with learning disabilities. Often its hard to see just how much they struggle, since they are bright enough to cover for it. Also processing issues - but my understanding is processing speed is hard to correct?


My son had some discrepencies but not that much. Its very confusing! Try to help him explore the high-level information he likes without letting his reading/writing slow him down. He will never be just like everyone else, but he's a bright kid who will find his way!


Keep looking for specialist who can help you, and keep looking for ways to let him 'be smart' without making him feel dumb!


I think the vision thing is a long shot, just to rule it out. But you might try looking at 'right brain' learners?

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Your eye appointment is with a *developmental optometrist*? And a good one? Do some checking and make sure it is.


Yes kids can read even with vision problems, mercy. My dd always read fine and was in fact a prolific reader *before* VT. What started showing up with her was headaches and refusing small print. Yes, it can affect handwriting. Just for your trivia, patch his eye and have him write a sentence he makes up using only one eye. Then switch the patch and have him write that same sentence using the other eye. Sometimes you'll see a difference there. My dd made all sorts of errors, had worse handwriting, misspelled things, dropped punctuation etc. with one of her eyes where the sentence (of her own creation) had been PERFECT with the first eye.


You can also have issues with visual processing. The developmental optometrist will check that. If the function isn't there (convergence, etc.) then sometimes the visual memory and whatnot doesn't build properly. Yes, my dd did something similar. She might misspell a basic word and then know how to spell "grouse" or something equally unusual. I asked her why, and she said the word had just been interesting to her. So you get stuff like that.


I'd be hard-pressed to encourage you to do forced sessions of the alphabet. I mean, maybe, but I'd get his eyes fixed first. There are lots of ways to work on working memory and processing speed. I don't know. I bought my dd a Wii, because video games can help. Were there issues with automaticity in the handwriting, hence the recommendation?


My dd's math scores also had a big spread between conceptual and computation. For her the big bump-up came this year when we switched to TT. I know that sounds terrible and people slam it, but she got a pretty big jump. I think it's because TT is simpler, contextualized, and spiral. I don't know why, just saying what happened. Her scores are now equal and she's visibly faster, something I never got despite all our work with Flashmaster and drills and this and that. Go figure.


Well a month is a while to wait. Ours was only a 2 week wait for the dev. optometrist. Is he a really good one? If he is, it's worth the wait.

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We know that there is something wrong with his eyes. Part of ds's issues have included weird eye stuff. Or what sometimes appear as eye stuff. He still runs into things and says he didn't see it with his glasses on. Some is likely his on world stuff but maybe some is a eye issue. I have dyslexia and synesthesia and dh and I both have other non-typical eye issues. So this could be a possibility.


When he got an eye eval last year the optometrist said that he had severe sensitivity to the light. More so then any patient she'd had before and she works with a wide range of ages and eye needs for more years then I've been alive. She said he needed a consult with a prism specialist, but that's not covered by our ins. and she wasn't sure that was what was wrong. Just don't have that kind of cash to throw around for a "might be". He told me when he began reading that the letters danced on the page and swirl a but and that they have colors. He hasn't really mentioned anything like that in the last six years though.


According to the psychologist this OD is really good and "patience with odd balls". She is with COVD and a couple other eye things. The big thing is that they take our Ins. for the eval. It will be completely covered minus the gas of course.


I think I will try that eye patch thing and see how he does. I think that the psychologist will want us to follow the OD if there is a convergence issue. If she wants him to continue the copy work or do something else.


The one thing I do know is that 4 years of OT with a strong focus on writing and daily practice at home for 15-20 min. twice a day has not worked.

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Well that's great the psych referred you for vision and that you could find a good COVD doc! So when is that appointment? As you say, when you do all kinds of stuff (therapy, tutoring, etc.) that requires vision and the stuff isn't sticking, that vision foundation is the reason. The brain is kind of screwy. Like if it doesn't like what it's seeing, it will just turn eyes off. It really doesn't WANT to see print moving all over, etc. etc. So you're correct that him not complaining about it anymore doesn't mean the problem just went away.


Well it will be interesting to hear what the eye doc finds! 10 is when my dd got her evals, so take heart. Since then we've had a lot of changes. So it feels like he's so old, but he has plenty of room ahead.

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When I read about dyslexia there is the same theme, that easy things are hard and hard things are easy.


I see it a little with my son. Things he needs to memorize are really, really hard for him. Hello, lots of things at the Kindergarten level. "Harder" things like understanding concepts come to him much more easily.


I don't think it compares, but for a while, my son had a very low percentile for speech articulation and a lowish (but not too bad in the scheme of things) percentile for intelligibility. But when he had his testing he got a 94th and a 97th percentile in his oral language and overall language (basically looking at what he would get if you could understand everything he said). I had no idea he would get a score that high -- I just saw the areas where he was doing poorly. And then I thought, how frustrating it must be for him to have all the ideas but not be able to be understood when he talked. I felt very bad about it.


But I hope this test will ultimately lead to some good information and ideas and understanding.



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