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Possible dyslexia


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Posted about this on the general board, but wanted to put it here also.

 

I enrolled the kids in school this year. Middle child with ld didn't want to go at all. She liked making friends but didn't like school. She was failing everything, reading teacher was very concerned. They were about to test her for dyslexia when we had to withdraw her yesterday. (Moved from MS to TX, then back to MS)

 

She had been tested in 1st grade at the college by students with a professor supervising. We didn't have a good experience at all, nothing for sure was figured out. They think she didn't have dyslexia, but possible something going on. She was considered a slow learner, had some visual perception stuff going on, ld. I've always felt it was a bad diagnosis. Reading teacher this year was very concerned about her having dyslexia and wanted to get her in special classes, so wanted her tested. Getting her tested here would be very difficult, only real option would be to go back to the college.

 

I was using apples and pears and dancing bears. I think I'll keep that up with her, and other than that, just let her learn how ever she needs to as I always have. I really don't like the idea of public school for her, they were all about getting the test results. That just seems really bad for a child with learning differences, and well, I just don't like it in general.

Edited by SeekingSimplicity
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It sounds strange you have to provide testing results for the school to provide her with extra help.

 

Where we are, they use RTI for some things. If a child has a low reading score, they can go to RTI reading pull-out with no other testing and no IEP. They just go and work on reading b/c they are having a hard time with reading.

 

Now -- when my son was in it, he got 30 minutes a day, in a group with two other kids. It was not enough to make a difference for him imo (so I worked with him at home).

 

If she is making progress with what you are doing now, I think that is fine. If she is not really making progress, I think you should try to find out why and a way to address that need, b/c I am pro-intervention that way. But I think a child's self-esteem and positive feelings are most important, and a parent knows how to pay attention to those.

 

For my son having an improvement in his skills has led to an improvement in his self-esteem and positive feelings ------ so I think that seeking out help CAN be positive in that way, not just a negative way of focusing on a problem. But it is a hard balance and I think parents know what is best more than a school would, that cannot be so flexible.

 

But I think it is worth seeing what she could get at school and meeting the pull-out (or whatever) teachers.

 

Really -- I don't think it is fine to just let her stay behind if she is not really making progress with your current home program. I think you need to dive back in and try to figure out what is going on and how to remediate whatever the problem is. It might be that school plays a role in that, or it might not. But right now if she is 10 and not reading well, that is probably not an awesome feeling for her, and having an answer of "well this is a weak area and this is what we will do about it and you can make improvement" is preferable to me than "well we will let you learn in your own way and stay behind" b/c to me that sends a message that she is too stupid to be helped. Maybe that is really not the message but I would want to make sure she did not have that feeling and the only way I know to do that is to try to find something where my kids can have success and see that they are making improvement (and if that is a program for struggling readers I don't say "oh, you are in the struggling reader program," lol).

 

That is probably really off the mark, but that is somewhat the path my ILs took with my husband and BIL and SIL, and my husband would have been a lot better off with some measure of facing the problem head-on, instead of getting pulled out of school and put in a series of private Christian schools where he was a leader and did well socially but continued with poor reading skills and just added poor spellling and poor writing as he got older. He has not magically turned into a good reader as an adult and with a job it is hard to find time to go back and make up for what I consider lost time. At the same time -- my ILs made a lot of good choices for him and he is a great person! I cannot quibble much, or say it might not have harmed him in some way to get him some help. But I know when he got pulled out of places and they didn't talk to him about it really, he was left to draw his own conclusions about why he couldn't do what the other kids his age could do.

Edited by Lecka
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Over the last 2 years dd had made leaps and bounds. Once I found phonics pathways and apples and pears, I felt they were really helping her. Started using color filters, which she liked. She went from not reading at all to reading at grade level. Her spelling is atrocious, but AAP seems to be helping (we're only on the second book). Her reading comprehension is not so hot and neither is her handwriting.

 

I didn't understand why it was so hard to get her in a modified class either. I talked to the principal when I enrolled her. I was hoping he'd say he would put her in her grade level but give her special classes. She is 11 and supposed to go into 6th, but I felt she was 5th-6th-ish, so I was ok with her going into 5th. They tested her for 5th and said she didn't do horrible, but not as well as they liked. They wanted her to be able to pass a standardized test for 5th to be able to go into 6th.

 

The thing that bothered me about this was that we learned different stuff than what the school taught, so I don't feel like it was a reflection of what she had learned. But he was all about getting the test scores on the standardized test. Really big on that. So he put her back in 5th, and that's fine. She and I were both OK with that. He wouldn't talk about special classes for her at all. Then at open house, I talked to the reading teacher, let her know what was going on with dd. She said she was glad I told her and she would evaluate her during class and keep me updated. She did, and she was very worried. But she said she would have to get her tested before she could move her to a modified class.

 

The school here tells me there is no way to test for dyslexia. All dyslexia is is difficulty reading, and if your child seems to have trouble they'll move her to a remedial class. I just don't feel good about it when I talk to them.

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Really -- I don't think it is fine to just let her stay behind if she is not really making progress with your current home program. I think you need to dive back in and try to figure out what is going on and how to remediate whatever the problem is. It might be that school plays a role in that, or it might not. But right now if she is 10 and not reading well, that is probably not an awesome feeling for her, and having an answer of "well this is a weak area and this is what we will do about it and you can make improvement" is preferable to me than "well we will let you learn in your own way and stay behind" b/c to me that sends a message that she is too stupid to be helped. Maybe that is really not the message but I would want to make sure she did not have that feeling and the only way I know to do that is to try to find something where my kids can have success and see that they are making improvement (and if that is a program for struggling readers I don't say "oh, you are in the struggling reader program," lol).

 

I never try to make her feel like she has a problem. What I meant is that she went from a situation where we were very child lead, she could follow her own interest and do things in her own time and own way while we worked on things she had difficulties with-- to a situation where she suddenly had to preform at the same pace as everyone else, regardless. She went from not knowing failure to failing at everything.

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Over the last 2 years dd had made leaps and bounds. Once I found phonics pathways and apples and pears, I felt they were really helping her. Started using color filters, which she liked. She went from not reading at all to reading at grade level. Her spelling is atrocious, but AAP seems to be helping (we're only on the second book). Her reading comprehension is not so hot and neither is her handwriting.

 

I didn't understand why it was so hard to get her in a modified class either. I talked to the principal when I enrolled her. I was hoping he'd say he would put her in her grade level but give her special classes. She is 11 and supposed to go into 6th, but I felt she was 5th-6th-ish, so I was ok with her going into 5th. They tested her for 5th and said she didn't do horrible, but not as well as they liked. They wanted her to be able to pass a standardized test for 5th to be able to go into 6th.

 

The thing that bothered me about this was that we learned different stuff than what the school taught, so I don't feel like it was a reflection of what she had learned. But he was all about getting the test scores on the standardized test. Really big on that. So he put her back in 5th, and that's fine. She and I were both OK with that. He wouldn't talk about special classes for her at all. Then at open house, I talked to the reading teacher, let her know what was going on with dd. She said she was glad I told her and she would evaluate her during class and keep me updated. She did, and she was very worried. But she said she would have to get her tested before she could move her to a modified class.

 

The school here tells me there is no way to test for dyslexia. All dyslexia is is difficulty reading, and if your child seems to have trouble they'll move her to a remedial class. I just don't feel good about it when I talk to them.

 

Educate yourself. The book Overcoming Dyslexia by Shaywitz would be a good place to start.

 

Your DD's success with using colored filters suggests a vision issue. What kind, I have no clue. I'm certain a mom or two here on the boards has dealt with that. Whatever the case, it sounds like your DD needs a private assessment. The local ps is clearly being obtuse. Withdrawing her from school sounds like a good call to me.

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Skimming through, I noticed two things: earlier testers pointed to the potential for a vision processing issue, and you are playing with colored filters. Why not do a developmental vision evaluation with COVD optometrist? It's possible to have more than one issue going on, i.e., it wouldn't be terribly uncommon for a child to have both dyslexia and a vision issue.

 

eta, you can also work on reading comprehension at home - visualizing what she reads, making inferences, etc. (in short, the sorts of things in the Visualizing and Verbalizing program).

 

There are tests that an SLP can do with regard to language processing, etc. that also might point toward or away from dyslexia.

Edited by wapiti
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Why not do a developmental vision evaluation with COVD optometrist?

 

 

I would love to do this, and have looked into it in the past. But, our insurance doesn't cover it, and the closest place to go is over 2 hrs from here. I talk to our eye dr regularly and he thinks she could really benefit from visual therapy, but because of the distance and financial strain he doesn't recommend it. I'm going to keep checking into this though. Things change all the time, and maybe something will pop up in one of the towns around here.

 

I really wish I could have kept her in that school long enough to have her tested before we moved, then maybe I would have a more precise idea of what's going on.

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I would love to do this, and have looked into it in the past. But, our insurance doesn't cover it, and the closest place to go is over 2 hrs from here. I talk to our eye dr regularly and he thinks she could really benefit from visual therapy, but because of the distance and financial strain he doesn't recommend it. I'm going to keep checking into this though. Things change all the time, and maybe something will pop up in one of the towns around here.

 

From this, it seems likely that vision is a significant piece of the puzzle. There are probably other pieces, but learning can be pretty tough if one has to spend a lot of energy just trying to correctly figure out what's on the page.

 

You're right to keep looking around because things do change. Check the COVD website again. We have had at least a handful to choose from for years, and yet my personal optometrist, right up the street, is also adding VT to his practice right now. It's tricky, because the more experienced docs are who I'd advise you to look for. (FWIW, there are posters here who have driven long distances, with appointments spread out with a lot of homework to make it more affordable and doable.)

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I would love to do this, and have looked into it in the past. But, our insurance doesn't cover it, and the closest place to go is over 2 hrs from here. I talk to our eye dr regularly and he thinks she could really benefit from visual therapy,

 

In this case I would suggest buying "Developing Ocular Motor and Visual Perceptual Skills: An Activity Workbook " by Kenneth Lane OD FCOVD

- so that you can be do something to help this area.

 

 

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Over the last 2 years dd had made leaps and bounds. Once I found phonics pathways and apples and pears, I felt they were really helping her. Started using color filters, which she liked. She went from not reading at all to reading at grade level. Her spelling is atrocious, but AAP seems to be helping (we're only on the second book). Her reading comprehension is not so hot and neither is her handwriting.

 

 

Curious, is there a difference in your daughter's reading comprehension when she reads to herself versus you reading aloud to her? How about a difference in when she reads silently versus her reading aloud (I don't know what you do to determine her comprehension...)?

 

If she's more of a whole-to-part learner, which is probable, a good game to play with her is Rummy Roots, and just generally helping her discover Latin and Greek roots, as that helps them with the break down in a meaningful way.

 

Since she's reading "at grade level," what are your concerns? (I'm sorry I don't seem to have the history others may have with your previous postings.)

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I would love to do this, and have looked into it in the past. But, our insurance doesn't cover it, and the closest place to go is over 2 hrs from here. I talk to our eye dr regularly and he thinks she could really benefit from visual therapy, but because of the distance and financial strain he doesn't recommend it. I'm going to keep checking into this though. Things change all the time, and maybe something will pop up in one of the towns around here.

 

I really wish I could have kept her in that school long enough to have her tested before we moved, then maybe I would have a more precise idea of what's going on.

 

Your doctor is wrong on this one. I would drive 2 hours for VT *in a heartbeat*. Seriously. That's not enough to stop you. I've driven 2 1/2 hours each way for speech therapy for my ds, almost an hour each way for VT and OT, so I've done it. It's not fun, but for GOOD THERAPY it's absolutely worth it. I think the Ken Lane book can be fine in a pinch, but you're not in a pinch. If you can drive 2 hours and get a good therapist, do that. Do it once a month and have them give you LOTS OF HOMEWORK. That way you'll have supervision, know you're working the things that are actually problems, and have someone to talk you through the hard parts.

 

Once a month with a therapist and the long drive will be better than no help and a book. Honest.

 

BTW, does your insurance cover a neuropsych eval? That's what you're wanting, aside from the vision. You definitely need the vision tested, but the neuropsych is the next step after that. The school system isn't giving you the run around on the dyslexia thing. It really is called "Reading Disorder" in the DSM. They took dyslexia out, may put it back in, blah blah, but as of DSM IV it's "Reading Disorder." So yes at some point it would be nice for you to get that psych eval and get things sorted out. However it doesn't exclude the need for the vision. Treat the vision problems and the SN are what's left. :)

Edited by OhElizabeth
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