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Feeling defeated and I haven't even started yet. Sigh :0(


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When dd6 was 4yo she knew all of her letters by sight. She knew the primary sounds and most of the common alternate sounds. You could hold up a glass and ask her the beginning and ending letters and she would know the answer. She knew a couple sight words and could 'read' them by sight. She knew numbers to 20 visually, and how to do simple addition up to 10. She is now 6y7mo. She attended 1/2 day kindergarten at the public school this year with an IEP in place due to behaviors. She had Major behavior issues from November till now, and she slept major portions of her time there. We wanted her moved to a special needs program last fall, but the district waited and kept her mainstreamed. Now that we are at the end of the year, they requested special testing and guess what....she not only did not progress this entire year....she regressed. :0(

 

She could only identified 24 letters and only knew some of the sounds.(The did an ABC wall every single day, so she had daily exposure to the ABC name, look and basic sounds. She did accurately add 5 math problems, but the teacher said it took her an excruciatingly long time (this was the resource teacher so she is used to giving kids an extra bit of time). So long, that she said if it was a timed test...she would have failed. She could not do any subtraction problems even after she was shown/reminded how to do them. The teacher said she didn't even bother testing her reading because she was trying to sound out words that were introduced the first week of school like A, The, At, Me, etc. She could not 'read' them, only sound them out.

 

At the beginning of the school year she was in the highest reading group, but the end she was in the lowest and wasn't progressing at all even in this group. She would not let me work with her in the evenings. By the end of school day, she was Done with school. She would have violent tantrums if I tried so I hoped and prayed that she was catching on at school.

 

The district has agreed to move her to a full time special needs program in the fall. It is just so hard to see her behind where she was at 4yo. I am going to home school her this summer and hope that since it will be the only school she is doing, that she will cooperate. I am going to tie some Heavy weekly rewards to it (zoo, OMSI, hiking, library visits, picking out her own books at B&N, swimming, beach trips etc) to hopefully motivate her to work on it with me.

 

I sit here researching different reading programs, as obviously what the school was using was not working (Read Well) and I just feel defeated already. I taught both of my older kids to read...But I just don't know what to do with her. If it was comprehension, or advanced phonetics....I can understand. But how do you start over on the ABCs?????? How do you teach them a different way??????? I am trying to think of tactile methods ala Montesorri. Or physical movement using songs and finger movements. Or projecting them onto the wall so they are huge, and using manipulative that are various textures sizes........But then at the end of the day, it all just comes back to letter blends and that is where she is stuck. She can do it during a lesson, but she doesn't retain it. Every day she is like a blank slate. :0(

 

How do you move something to long term memory, when they can't seem to hold it in short term?

 

Defeated, before I even start. :0/

 

(FYI: she is getting a neurophysch eval in the fall, but I have nothing to go on till then)

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Lyrics to Out Of Reach

:

 

you're always bound to fall

there's nothin you can do

the weight of gravity begins

to pull you down again

so what are you to do now?

stuck between the hope and doubt

you get so close to clarity

makes you question everything

 

you're so far away

so far away from me

is it starting to break

underneath my feet

you're so far away

am i just out of reach?

 

we keep talking in circles

starin out with empty eyes

wanting to be known again

so afraid of letting in

so do we leave it all to history?

will you ever answer me?

do you still recognize my voice?

or is it lost among the noise?

 

you're so far away

far away from me

is it starting to break

underneath my feet?

you're so far away

am i just out of reach?

 

and while the world unravels

we're kickin at shadows

and everyone around us

is making up chaos

oh, i cannot find you

i'm walkin like i'm blinded

am i saying anything at all?

 

you're so far away

far away from me

is it starting to break

underneath my feet?

is it set in stone?

could someone tell me please?

am i all alone?

am i just out of reach?

 

 

 

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=a7SKsAdn5z4

 

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I am in no way an expert, but the regression and escalating behaviors (especially the sleeping) makes me think there might be a physical something going on? Small seizures? (God forbid) brain something? An u diagnosed virus or infection causing confusion or something? I'm not articulating it well, but it seems so odd she would be so unteachable after...not being so.

 

That's all I can come up with, which is not probably helpful as I'm sure you've pursued that. I'm sorry- I know what it is to have a struggling child! If it helps, my child I feared would never read or be successful is now a teen, and doing well. Ish. Well enough, lol. Just keep fighting the good fight, it will pay off, I promise.

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Are you thinking of homeschooling? Or is this for over the summer?

 

I can tell you what I did with my energetic tactile learner, but she would have had a nuclear meltdown of epic proportions if I had tried to make her school at home after a full day at school.

 

I used *many* Montessori style activities. I bought glittered letters. We traced letters in a tray of cornmeal. I made sound boxes and thermal jars. We transferred millions of things from a bowl into colored smaller bowls-using tongs and puffy craft balls, then tweezers and beads, then chopsticks and rice. She recited poems while hopping on one foot and math facts while jumping rope.

 

Montessori has loads and loads of activities that help build on each other and help kids remember as well as prepping their motor skills. I highly recommend the books "Montessori Play and Learn" and "I Can Do It! I Can Do It!"

 

I used Sing, Spell, Read and Write for phonics. They have a "ferris wheel" technique that they use for blending. You might see if you can find a YouTube video?

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Are you thinking of homeschooling? Or is this for over the summer?

 

I can tell you what I did with my energetic tactile learner, but she would have had a nuclear meltdown of epic proportions if I had tried to make her school at home after a full day at school.

 

I used *many* Montessori style activities. I bought glittered letters. We traced letters in a tray of cornmeal. I made sound boxes and thermal jars. We transferred millions of things from a bowl into colored smaller bowls-using tongs and puffy craft balls, then tweezers and beads, then chopsticks and rice. She recited poems while hopping on one foot and math facts while jumping rope.

 

Montessori has loads and loads of activities that help build on each other and help kids remember as well as prepping their motor skills. I highly recommend the books "Montessori Play and Learn" and "I Can Do It! I Can Do It!"

 

I used Sing, Spell, Read and Write for phonics. They have a "ferris wheel" technique that they use for blending. You might see if you can find a YouTube video?

 

 

Summer, before she starts the new program in the fall. I am hoping that with some one-on-one this summer, maybe I gain back the ground they lost and see if I can fill in the missing holes. Unfortunately the special needs program uses the same Read Well program as her school this past year, so I doubt she will progress any futher than she has already without some kind of intervention.

 

I will look in to SRW. I haven't used it before but am open to any ideas for different curricula. I still have 100EZ and Phonics Museum from dd14 plus a whole tote full of manipulative. I need to hit a curriculum store and peruse the racks.

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What a heavy load you are carrying!!!! I can feel your frustration and desire to help your child. The regression part is especially frustrating. I don't know much about anything that would help you, but I did hear this woman speak at our homeschool conference last weekend, and I've been praising her name everywhere because I learned so much from her. She speaks about four main "gates" she calls them that can block learning. I was most interested in writing problems because that is what my son is struggling with. But she also covered auditory processing issues as well as aspects of nutrition and the effect it has on the brain. Her website is crammed with information and is a little bit overwhelming, but i linked an article about auditory processing and kids that just can't seem to remember things that you've taught them over and over and over and over. Until you can get the evaluation, this could be a place to start.

 

 

http://www.diannecraft.org/auditory-processing-problems/

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First of all hugs to you for all you are going through and the pain you feel at not being able to reach your daughter.

 

I can't help but wonder, what happened between 4 yo and now? There is an almost 3 year gap. At 4 I see a bright, smart little girl, then fast forward to now, when she is 6yr 7mos & she is Kindergarten & having behavioral and learning problems & considered special needs. I'm surprized and confused! What things happened in the meantime? Was she a special needs child at 4? Has she always been special needs? I feel like we might be missing some information that might be important to her (and your) current struggles.

 

The sleeping definitely concerns me. Is it possible any or all of this is due to particular emotional struggles? Or does she have a specific learning disability or other disability? Or is she possibly gifted and misplaced and therefore bored and frustrated due to the lack of adequate stimulation?

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First of all hugs to you for all you are going through and the pain you feel at not being able to reach your daughter.

 

I can't help but wonder, what happened between 4 yo and now? There is an almost 3 year gap. At 4 I see a bright, smart little girl, then fast forward to now, when she is 6yr 7mos & she is Kindergarten & having behavioral and learning problems & considered special needs. I'm surprized and confused! What things happened in the meantime? Was she a special needs child at 4? Has she always been special needs? I feel like we might be missing some information that might be important to her (and your) current struggles.

 

The sleeping definitely concerns me. Is it possible any or all of this is due to particular emotional struggles? Or does she have a specific learning disability or other disability? Or is she possibly gifted and misplaced and therefore bored and frustrated due to the lack of adequate stimulation?

 

She has been with us since she was 5mo. She was not abused or neglected (taken from her mother at birth), but her mental health issues were apparent by 1yo. She has been in OT/BT since she was 2yo. Diagnosed PDD-NOS (Aspergers), Anxiety, Sensory processing disorder, ADD around 4yo. Medication interventions started around the same time (sleep medications at first), but are necessary for her behaviors. (without she has violent tantrums 75% of the day). She was diagnosed with a mild sleep apnea last week and is getting tonsils removed this summer to hopefully help with that. The sleeping is surely partially biological but it is also, at least partially, behavioral avoidance. So yes, there are factors at play here, but even still....why the regression? Static learning I can understand....I don't understand going backwards with skills that are being taught day after day in her class.

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You asked about different programs that are "different"

 

I would recommend Logic of English-- it teaches the sounds differently.--

 

or perhaps the phonics page that Elizabeth has

http://www.thephonicspage.org/

-- it also teaches phonics in a fresher, newer way so as to not bore the child or feel like things are being taught again.

 

LOE worked for us, but if I were you I would really take a look to the phonics page first.

 

One of the things that really worked for us with LOE is NOT buying the flash cards and having the child MAKE her own-- this added more hand movement to the program and I know they have games that others bought and really liked.

 

I am so sorry you are going though this-- but what a great mom you are!!

 

 

Lara

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Her issues sound a lot like my ASD 7yo, which is why I never put him in school. I expect, based on other class-type settings in which I've seen him, that without a one-on-one aide who was constantly getting him to pay attention and re-explaining concepts and instructions, he would not be engaged with learning. He has auditory processing issues that make it very difficult for him to learn from a teacher in a classroom setting. Without that daily reinforcement, newly acquired skills like letter recognition and sounds disappear. In my experience, what you describe really wouldn't be all that unusual.

 

My 3yo watched Leap Frog Letter Factory a few times about a year ago. He knew all his letters and sounds. But, it's not something that we practiced and he's lost all that except for the letters he cares about. My 7yo has an amazing memory for things that have happened to him, but his recall of facts is not good at all. He needs constant practice and engagement and if he was in a classroom with 20 other children, and with his behavior, he wouldn't be getting that. As it is, he is a very advanced reader.

 

We started the 7yo with Leap Frog videos and used a lot of the sensory products from Handwriting Without Tears, then did the Sing, Spell, Read, and Write K/Level 1 combination. I skipped the first Level 1 book since it was the sane as the second K book and we were going straight through. I also was using it only for the reading instruction, not for spelling and writing practice, though I did do those occasionally. After that, we followed up with Sonlight's reader packages which he read aloud to me until he was halfway through the second grade package, and then I just asked the questions.

 

 

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But how do you start over on the ABCs?????? How do you teach them a different way??????? I am trying to think of tactile methods ala Montesorri. Or physical movement using songs and finger movements. Or projecting them onto the wall so they are huge, and using manipulative that are various textures sizes........But then at the end of the day, it all just comes back to letter blends and that is where she is stuck. She can do it during a lesson, but she doesn't retain it. Every day she is like a blank slate. :0(

 

 

Have you looked into All About Spelling? They start with simple phonemes and then start building words with them with the magnets. Blends are slowly introduced. My kid gets a kick out of moving the tiles around to make new words.

 

I used 100 EZ to teach him to read, and the way AAS is set up segues neatly from that, they just use colored disks and tiles instead of putting your finger on the dot-and-arrow lines.

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I second the logic of English. My daughter went into ps kinder reading pretty decent with short words. By the end of the year, she had not progressed at all and was regressing in some aspects. Logic of English was a miracle in my opinion. It was hands on to accommodate the wiggles, and her reading has exploded in just 15 lessons or so. The game book and cards can help keep it fun. You could gloss over some of the grammar if your goal was just reading, but I've found doing it all with my daughter has given her the "whole" picture of language and she is doing fantastic with it.

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I second the logic of English. My daughter went into ps kinder reading pretty decent with short words. By the end of the year, she had not progressed at all and was regressing in some aspects. Logic of English was a miracle in my opinion. It was hands on to accommodate the wiggles, and her reading has exploded in just 15 lessons or so. The game book and cards can help keep it fun. You could gloss over some of the grammar if your goal was just reading, but I've found doing it all with my daughter has given her the "whole" picture of language and she is doing fantastic with it.

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