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Does learning to read have to be difficult?


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My first daughter struggled to learn to read - we literally fought and cried every day over 5 minutes (timed) of phonics. I tried a half dozen or more popular reading method curricula and nothing worked better than another. One day it just clicked and she was reading. She took off like a shot and went from K level to 3rd grade in 1 months time.  :banghead:

 

My second daughter is 5. She desperately wants to read, has asked about reading for over a year, but struggles. She finally has mastered most of the letter sounds, we are working through phonics pathways and while it's slow it's progress. She just struggles and fights and gets frustrated and doesn't want to do it. She goes through cycles where she'll pour through books, wishing out loud she could read, flipping through chapter books in desperation. Then she doubles down on her phonics lessons and within 2 days is frustrated and giving up and doesn't even pull books off the shelf to look at anymore.  :(

 

Should I be trying something else? Should I just use a timer and keep working through Phonics Pathways? I've got 2 more to go after this one, is it just difficult to learn to read? Will each one go through this "fight it" phase?? :confused:

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Have you been doing Phonics Pathways daily with your daughter? 5 is still young, but I don't see why you couldn't do 5 minutes of daily phonics.

 

I don't think learning to read has to be challenging. I do think it is necessary to take breaks and not allow them to get too frustrated though. I'll tell you a little of what we do.

 

We're using Ordinary Parents Guide to Teaching Reading with my almost 5yo. It's taken us a year to get half way through (115 lessons). What we do is a section at a time (usually 10 or so lessons) and then I'll reassess. If she still seems to need help on those concepts, we take a break for a week and just review. During review weeks we will play games with past words, read phonics readers, and write words. Then we move on. Right now we are on a review break after hitting the half way point. I find that stopping and reviewing helps with frustration. That way they can gain some fluency before moving on

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Have you been doing Phonics Pathways daily with your daughter? 5 is still young, but I don't see why you couldn't do 5 minutes of daily phonics.

 

I don't think learning to read has to be challenging. I do think it is necessary to take breaks and not allow them to get too frustrated though. I'll tell you a little of what we do.

 

We're using Ordinary Parents Guide to Teaching Reading with my almost 5yo. It's taken us a year to get half way through (115 lessons). What we do is a section at a time (usually 10 or so lessons) and then I'll reassess. If she still seems to need help on those concepts, we take a break for a week and just review. During review weeks we will play games with past words, read phonics readers, and write words. Then we move on. Right now we are on a review break after hitting the half way point. I find that stopping and reviewing helps with frustration. That way they can gain some fluency before moving on

The problem is that she gets frustrated almost immediately. She wants to just miraculously be able to read I think!

 

 

Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk

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The problem is that she gets frustrated almost immediately. She wants to just miraculously be able to read I think!

 

 

Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk

 

My 5 year old was the same way. She told me she wanted to learn to read, but learning letters was boring, and she really didn't want to learn letters. She just wanted me to teach her how to read.  :glare:  I remember how, a few months ago, she threw a Bob book across the bed because she found she needed to sound out the words again after having read along with me a few times already. It was frustrating for her. She'll be 6 in a couple of months, and things are a lot smoother. Lessons are still short (5-10 minutes), but after having figured out blending, she's showing more patience to learn other parts to reading (like more letters), because she sees the end result (reading words, sentences, very short phonetic stories).

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How does she do on phonological awareness activities? Things like rhyming, recognizing which words start with the same sounds, clapping out syllables, etc.

 

If phonological awareness is good, I would back off and just do fun literacy activities for a few months. Evan-Moor Take it to Your Seat Phonics Centers has lots of good "hands-on" phonics activities.

 

If, however, she struggles with phonological awareness then I would NOT wait but start an intervention program like Lindamood-Bell LiPS or Foundations in Sounds.

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How does she do on phonological awareness activities? Things like rhyming, recognizing which words start with the same sounds, clapping out syllables, etc.

 

If phonological awareness is good, I would back off and just do fun literacy activities for a few months. Evan-Moor Take it to Your Seat Phonics Centers has lots of good "hands-on" phonics activities.

 

If, however, she struggles with phonological awareness then I would NOT wait but start an intervention program like Lindamood-Bell LiPS or Foundations in Sounds.

The phonological awareness stuff was not there a year ago. That is what we've spent the past year working on. There is a good possibility that there is something else going on as she has shown a disorganization in her language we've had to direct instruct several things that should have come more naturally based on a highly specialized speech professional. We're no longer working with the speech teacher due to moving over the summer, but we have had so much progress with the phonological awareness and beginning phonics (letter sounds finally coming in).

 

I think the thing that frustrates me the most is that she wants to read, but struggles with the phonics lessons and resorts to not even looking at books anymore. She's done this several times before, and will get to the point where she doesn't even want me to read to her, like she's avoiding books entirely. I just wish it didn't have to be so difficult!

Edited by mamashark
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We did not find learning to read to be difficult here.  (I know!  Don't throw tomatoes at me!)  We took steps to prepare him to read in a more orderly manner than my oldest was exposed to (took the oldest 8 months, the youngest 3 to read on a second grade level).  We purposely withheld letter names, introduced lowercase tactile letters with their sounds a la Montessori, worked a lot on puzzles (things like Day And Night and Wedgits, where visual discrimination and part-to-whole thinking was required).  Only when I was satisfied with how he was thinking things out did I start phonics.  I brought out Teach Your Child To Read In 100 Easy Lessons a little after he turned 4yo, did the lessons with the tactile letters where he could say the sounds as he traced the arrows with his fingers, manipulate them on a tray with an arrow drawn on it, and left them out for him to play with without lessons.  He was done in 100 days.

 

 

 

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The phonological awareness stuff was not there a year ago. That is what we've spent the past year working on. There is a good possibility that there is something else going on as she has shown a disorganization in her language we've had to direct instruct several things that should have come more naturally based on a highly specialized speech professional. We're no longer working with the speech teacher due to moving over the summer, but we have had so much progress with the phonological awareness and beginning phonics (letter sounds finally coming in).

 

I think the thing that frustrates me the most is that she wants to read, but struggles with the phonics lessons and resorts to not even looking at books anymore. She's done this several times before, and will get to the point where she doesn't even want me to read to her, like she's avoiding books entirely. I just wish it didn't have to be so difficult!

I would consider Foundations in Sound if you suspect any real issues with phonological processing.  For some children this is not intuitive and takes systematic specialized exposure.

 

http://www.foundationinsounds.com/

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The phonological awareness stuff was not there a year ago. That is what we've spent the past year working on. There is a good possibility that there is something else going on as she has shown a disorganization in her language we've had to direct instruct several things that should have come more naturally based on a highly specialized speech professional. We're no longer working with the speech teacher due to moving over the summer, but we have had so much progress with the phonological awareness and beginning phonics (letter sounds finally coming in).

 

In this case, I would encourage you to seek out a new speech & language pathologist. There may be underlying language issues and intervention is really important if that's the case. I'm studying Communicative Disorders and just read some research about how oral narrative abilities at age 5 predict reading comprehension scores at age 9.

 

Learn-to-read programs that work well for typically developing kids like Phonics Pathways and OPGTR are not going to be enough for a child who has learning disabilities. It's better to do the intervention at 5 than try to remediate at 9 or 10.

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You know, I'm sitting here pondering all of this and realized something. We've developed our entire homeschool around delight, interest led learning. We have worked hard to find curriculum that is challenging and interesting and provides a way to learn how to learn and to enjoy the process of learning all at the same time. Except for phonics. Phonics is dry and boring and basic drill. 

 

Is there a curriculum that is not dry? A phonics program that inspires delight instead of boring drill and practice of letters and sounds? 

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Is there a curriculum that is not dry? A phonics program that inspires delight instead of boring drill and practice of letters and sounds? 

 

I can't imagine one. :lol:

 

But we did our syllabary drill with magnetic shapes, which at least made it a bit more colourful and tactile. 

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I can't imagine one. :lol:

 

But we did our syllabary drill with magnetic shapes, which at least made it a bit more colourful and tactile. 

 

lol, that's not helpful! There's gotta be something! 

 

Maybe in the meantime, while I search, we can use magnetic shapes with our phonics pathways lessons... but there's gotta be something...

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lol, that's not helpful! There's gotta be something! 

 

Maybe in the meantime, while I search, we can use magnetic shapes with our phonics pathways lessons... but there's gotta be something...

 

Lol! I think teaching to read can sometimes seem a bit...torturous? I actually like to teach reading though.

 

I try to turn drills into games. Whether it was doing a board game type game- cards could be words being learned, throwing in some words from the same word family but not learned explicitly - or jumping from word to word on the floor for the more active kids (I only seem capable to reproduce really active children!). I've also matched beginning sounds with ending sounds in a game of concentration to make real or pretend words (actually did this using Spanish syllables, but will work in English with consonants and word family endings). Another game I made used a file folder (or construction paper) with a ladder drawn on it. Each card read correctly advanced the game piece. Missed words (or sounds) were recycled back in the pack or used for another game for more practice. Top of the ladder received a prize. Most of the games only need some index cards (or construction paper) and markers. I really like inexpensive!

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You know, I'm sitting here pondering all of this and realized something. We've developed our entire homeschool around delight, interest led learning. We have worked hard to find curriculum that is challenging and interesting and provides a way to learn how to learn and to enjoy the process of learning all at the same time. Except for phonics. Phonics is dry and boring and basic drill. 

 

Is there a curriculum that is not dry? A phonics program that inspires delight instead of boring drill and practice of letters and sounds? 

 

A lot of kids enjoy All About Reading--you might check that out to see if it would be a fit for you. Both of my kids struggled with learning to read and I wish it had been out back then! Here's an article from their blog that can help you see whether your daughter is ready to start a reading program.

Edited by MerryAtHope
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My first daughter struggled to learn to read - we literally fought and cried every day over 5 minutes (timed) of phonics. I tried a half dozen or more popular reading method curricula and nothing worked better than another. One day it just clicked and she was reading. She took off like a shot and went from K level to 3rd grade in 1 months time.  :banghead:

 

My second daughter is 5. She desperately wants to read, has asked about reading for over a year, but struggles. She finally has mastered most of the letter sounds, we are working through phonics pathways and while it's slow it's progress. She just struggles and fights and gets frustrated and doesn't want to do it. She goes through cycles where she'll pour through books, wishing out loud she could read, flipping through chapter books in desperation. Then she doubles down on her phonics lessons and within 2 days is frustrated and giving up and doesn't even pull books off the shelf to look at anymore.  :(

 

Should I be trying something else? Should I just use a timer and keep working through Phonics Pathways? I've got 2 more to go after this one, is it just difficult to learn to read? Will each one go through this "fight it" phase?? :confused:

 

No, it doesn't have to be difficult, but some children pick it up more easily than others.

 

You say that you "tried half a dozen or more" methods. My thoughts on that are that you might have tried too many, not staying with one long enough to see results before moving to a different method, resulting in more confusion.

 

Maybe Phonics Pathways is not the best one for your younger dd. Also, she's just five. Something like Explode the Code might be better for such a little person.

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5 is still very young. Most 5 year olds are not ready to learn to read. Just because a kid wants to be able to do something doesn't mean their brain is ready to learn to do it.  I would put it away for a while (maybe 3-6 months.) Then I'd try it again for 10 minutes twice a day for a few weeks. Rinse.  Repeat until the kid takes to it.

My oldest learned to read fluently (like an adult) between her 4th and 5th birthdays.  I never repeated anything with her. I just basically explained phonics to her and she immediately understood and applied it. It was weird. She started cc at 17.

My middle wasn't ready to read until she was almost 8.  When she was 5 I got it out for 10 minutes a day, twice a day for a few weeks but not much stuck and it was frustrating, so we put it away for 3 months and repeated that pattern for a few years. She was doing little more than single letter sounds with a few CVC words from 5 ages to almost 8.  Then she took off.  By 11 she could read like an adult. She started cc at 15.

My youngest started learning to read in the 5-6 range and at 11 almost reads like an adult but she's not quite there yet.

 

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5 is still very young. Most 5 year olds are not ready to learn to read. Just because a kid wants to be able to do something doesn't mean their brain is ready to learn to do it.  I would put it away for a while (maybe 3-6 months.) Then I'd try it again for 10 minutes twice a day for a few weeks. Rinse.  Repeat until the kid takes to it.

 

I agree with this for typically developing kids. However, the OP mentioned that this particular child was in speech therapy. Children with speech & language impairments are at high risk of dyslexia and other learning disabilities. As someone studying Communicative Disorders, I have to advise that the "wait and see" approach is NOT what the parent should do when there are "red flags" for LD's.

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I agree with this for typically developing kids. However, the OP mentioned that this particular child was in speech therapy. Children with speech & language impairments are at high risk of dyslexia and other learning disabilities. As someone studying Communicative Disorders, I have to advise that the "wait and see" approach is NOT what the parent should do when there are "red flags" for LD's.

 

You don't think developmental readiness is a real thing if learning disorders are in play?

 

Maybe I have a weird kid. Her internal grammar mechanism still hasn't developed correctly, but she reads two years above her age level despite stealth dyslexia. 

 

I think "wait and see" for reading and maths is perfectly acceptable for a 5yo, even if there are red flags for learning difficulties. 

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You know, I'm sitting here pondering all of this and realized something. We've developed our entire homeschool around delight, interest led learning. We have worked hard to find curriculum that is challenging and interesting and provides a way to learn how to learn and to enjoy the process of learning all at the same time. Except for phonics. Phonics is dry and boring and basic drill.

 

Is there a curriculum that is not dry? A phonics program that inspires delight instead of boring drill and practice of letters and sounds?

If you are working on letter sounds etc the letter of the week program has lots of fun option like tracing in flour and having cream and Jolly phonics has various little things to make it a bit more fun. In all honesty though we just pushed through the boredom and frustration mostly. The fun part is reading fun stories after you know how. Balance it out with plenty of fun read alouds so that reading is still seen as a fun thing and you won't kill the love.

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You know, I'm sitting here pondering all of this and realized something. We've developed our entire homeschool around delight, interest led learning. We have worked hard to find curriculum that is challenging and interesting and provides a way to learn how to learn and to enjoy the process of learning all at the same time. Except for phonics. Phonics is dry and boring and basic drill.

 

Is there a curriculum that is not dry? A phonics program that inspires delight instead of boring drill and practice of letters and sounds?

I love Sing, Spell, Read, Write. It has songs and games to help,them remember their sounds and for learning to blend.

 

In terms of your original question, I taught all 8 of my kids to read and am now teaching my oldest grandchild. 3 of my kids are dyslexic; one of my dyslexics didn't learn to read on grade level until late 4th grade. He is now a straight A math and physics major who excels across every subject. His spelling is horrific and his reading speed is slow, but he is more than capable of compensating for his disability.

 

One thing I absolutely never, ever let happen was frustration while reading. We would play games, I would help them by reminding them via singing songs. We would work with letter tiles, etc. But if they were getting frustrated, it was time to come up to witn an alternative approach. We did a lot of team reading. They read a word, then I would read a word. We progressed to they would read a sentence, then I would read a sentence. Then paragraph, then page, etc.

 

When our ds was in 6th grade, he overheard me talking to a friend about how much he struggled to learn to read and how far behind he had been. After she left, he asked me about my conversation bc he said he never realized it. I almost cried, bc I can't imagine how he would have viewed himself if he had been in a school bc he was just that behind.

Edited by 8FillTheHeart
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Blending is the key.  One of the early steps in All About Spelling is sort of a reverse blending exercise where they have several tokens and the child "pulls down" or "takes" a token for each sound in the word (like cat, for example - "c" and takes a token, "a" and takes a token, "t" and takes a token).  I think this was helpful for one of mine.  Also, I think sometimes they need to go sideways for awhile.  I don't think a straight-up, ever increasing path will work for most kids.  When we were finally able to sound out a few 3 letter words, but trying to put together a string of them was still hard work, we would play bingo games with cvc words.  They loved it; it gave them practice; there were no tears.  I used PP a bit along the way, but never open and go in a straight linear progression.  

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I used Progressive Phonics and dd found it fun, but I think she's a "natural" reader, so I have no idea whether it would be so with other kids.

My real suggest is to model doing hard stuff. Take up knitting or something else with visible mistakes. Make sure when you make a mistake in front of her you let her see you are frustrated. Talk about it aloud with her. "Grr, dd, I feel so frustrated, I just keep messing up. I have to take this part out again! I really want to finish, but it's hard! What do you think dd? Should I quit, take a break and try again later, or keep going?" Do this a few times with different things. When you finish a project, or make significant progress, point that out to her and thank her for her encouragement when things got tough. After she gets used to that, start applying it to her life. Let her choose between pressing on and taking a break to try later.

And also listen to everyone's great advice about programs and such since these ladies know a lot more than me!

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FWIW, I did the barton screening with her this morning, she failed part A but passed part B and C with flying colors. 

 

How does she do on phonological awareness activities? Things like rhyming, recognizing which words start with the same sounds, clapping out syllables, etc.

 

If phonological awareness is good, I would back off and just do fun literacy activities for a few months. Evan-Moor Take it to Your Seat Phonics Centers has lots of good "hands-on" phonics activities.

 

If, however, she struggles with phonological awareness then I would NOT wait but start an intervention program like Lindamood-Bell LiPS or Foundations in Sounds.

 

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Countries that delay school till age 7 often have lower illiteracy rates. And learning to read is thought to be easy and natural for most children.

 

If I were to try to teach a 10 year old to lift and carry 50 pounds, it would be hard, and we would need special equipment, and all the latest techniques.

 

But if I waited till he was 14, I'd just spend moments showing him to lift with his legs not his back, and that would be it. If I had to show him anything at all.

 

I know young children that REALLY want to learn to drive a car. It doesn't mean I will help or even allow it. And I'm certainly not going to get into ridiculous conversations with them that it is SO hard.

 

Yes, there are reading LDs! But....

 

What if we had a country where elite level gymnastics were expected of everyone? If our buildings, sidewalks, school system, and employers expected extreme levels of fitness and agility? How many people would be labeled as "disabled" and defective?

 

So, even the idea that people with less honed reading skills are disabled doesn't quite work for me. Yes, they are not gifted and competitive in a society that covets and expects high levels of achievement in reading, but is it a personal defect or a defect in our societies' expectations for ALL people?

 

Many children do not read until 8. People have been talking about ages 5,6,7 to start school since the Roman empire, and we can read about this in works by Quintilian.

 

I like Alpha-Phonics REVISED, for initial reading instruction. Once it became free, I have no other default suggestion. I prefer the smaller softcover Phonics for Success version available at Amazon for $9.99 to the free PDF at the author's website, or the Chaldeon Press spiral bound that is tricky to find. The original italic version sold to most homeschoolers is NOT the REVISED edition, so beware of their slick advertising!

 

I like Don Potter's supplementary First Readers Anthology for extra practice in reading and copy work.

 

And I like Spalding handwriting. Not the rest of what they offer; just the handwriting.

 

And I like the NIrV Bible and Ruth Beechick's The Three R's for early composition and grammar. Lately I'm looking at adding in more of SWB's The Complete Writer, using the NIrV. The NIrV is just such a CONSISTENT text to use for copywork and dictation.

 

Add in the Merriam-Webster Concise Large Print Dictionary and Marvin Terban's Checking Your Grammar, and no, I don't find reading to be hard to teach, even to many adults that failed to learn to read as children.

 

My oldest didn't learn to read until typical European expectations. Unfortunately he attended a "good" public school in his early years. We got through it, and even before leaving was considered one of their strong readers. And after moving, was considered a "gifted" reader at his new school.

 

That is just my story and experiences. Others have different ones.

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I agree with this for typically developing kids. However, the OP mentioned that this particular child was in speech therapy. Children with speech & language impairments are at high risk of dyslexia and other learning disabilities. As someone studying Communicative Disorders, I have to advise that the "wait and see" approach is NOT what the parent should do when there are "red flags" for LD's.

 

I don't think having signs of a LD makes 5 year old a good candidate for phonics instruction.  Sure, if you have language or processing problems otherwise, then you should see someone about those issues, but this is a question about phonics instruction.  LD or no LD, 5 is still very young to learn to read.

 

We're also talking about a poster who has used half a dozen reading programs with a child who is now only 5.  Assuming that started a year ago that means

 

1. She thought she needed to teach a 4 year old to read.

2. She changed the method of instruction every couple of months or so.

 

I think posters like that need to hear about developmental appropriateness in general and need to hear that they may be causing some of the problems with inconsistency. The LD issue is the least of the issues in this particular situation.

 

Edited by Homeschool Mom in AZ
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The phonological awareness stuff was not there a year ago. That is what we've spent the past year working on. There is a good possibility that there is something else going on as she has shown a disorganization in her language we've had to direct instruct several things that should have come more naturally based on a highly specialized speech professional. We're no longer working with the speech teacher due to moving over the summer, but we have had so much progress with the phonological awareness and beginning phonics (letter sounds finally coming in).

 

I think the thing that frustrates me the most is that she wants to read, but struggles with the phonics lessons and resorts to not even looking at books anymore. She's done this several times before, and will get to the point where she doesn't even want me to read to her, like she's avoiding books entirely. I just wish it didn't have to be so difficult!

 

 

FWIW, I did the barton screening with her this morning, she failed part A but passed part B and C with flying colors. 

 

Ok, I'm just gonna jump in here at the end.  I'm cool with the observation that kids do have a range, etc. and that things click when they click.  My dd was that way, wanting to before she was actually quite there.  When it clicked, it clicked and she was fine.  However that's NOT what you're saying.  I would encourage you to come over to LC and actually lay out what's going on.  You've had enough issues that you've sought out evals by an SLP.  You ended your speech therapy because you moved (yes?), not because they said you were done.  And not only is Barton NOT a dyslexia test, but she had an odd pattern of response that occurred AFTER what seems like significant intervention on your part.

 

So to me, having a ds with significant speech problems and dyslexia AND a kid who had neither, you've pushed into an area where you already know you have SOMETHING going on, haven't nailed exactly what (or haven't disclosed it to the board here) and are getting funky results on testing because you've done SOME intervention but not ENOUGH to get her over the hump.

 

In general, it's going to mean you need to find another SLP, do fresh testing, see what's going on.  And the sucky thing is she might have qualified under SLD reading, but your CTOPP isn't going to show it unless there's major discrepancy from IQ, meaning you'd need a full psych eval.  We eval'd my ds at newly 6, after him having multiple months of gently paced, almost child-led (not aggressive) LIPS, and it had clearly bumped his scores, much the way it looks like your interventions have bumped her scores.  He was diagnosable, because we got a full CTOPP and IQ and could still see the discrepancy.

 

I think in the case of your dd I would start with the SLP eval, because you know you have unresolved issues there.  Language development issues are also going to affect her reading, since you need to UNDERSTAND the language you're trying to decode.  When we finally, finally got my ds decoding, it then become obvious he couldn't UNDERSTAND what he was reading!  So the SLP could help you on multiple fronts here.

 

As far as failing section A of the Barton test, that's really astonishing, honestly.  I think passing B and C is because you've intervened effectively.  However to fail section A is HIGHLY concerning.  My ds actually had the issue that he could not repeat a simple, short sentence at that age.  It reflected his language problems and was something we had to work on multiple ways.  I would just be very concerned about this.  I hope people are actually looking at the Barton pre-test (like I am right now) to realize what she's saying this dc cannot do.  These are basic skills, and according to Barton a newly 5 year old who is typically developing SHOULD be able to pass this.  So you have holes remaining that need intervention and you need (at least) an SLP eval to get it sorted out.  I would pursue the SLP eval now and the psych eval as she turns 6.  If the SLP can run a CTOPP, that would be good.  Even with your intervention, it will give you a RAN/RAS score, which would be a latent indicator of dyslexia.

 

Remember, the amount you have to intervene is SO LOW at this age, that nominal interventions can make the disabilities less obvious.  Given another 6 months to a year, the NT peers will pull ahead, making the disability appear again.  This happened with my ds, where I used intervention materials specific to dyscalculia on him, and the psych said he couldn't see the math SLD.  Well it was there, and after another 6 months (where his peers had more time to pull ahead) it become VERY OBVIOUS to the next two psychs.  (Yes, we've seen, um, a lotta psychs, lol. He's sorta complex.)

 

So that's why I'm suggesting you be conservative, go back to where you *know* you had a whole (speech/language issues), fill that in, and pursue the rest with time.

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Ok, I'm just gonna jump in here at the end. I'm cool with the observation that kids do have a range, etc. and that things click when they click. My dd was that way, wanting to before she was actually quite there. When it clicked, it clicked and she was fine. However that's NOT what you're saying. I would encourage you to come over to LC and actually lay out what's going on. You've had enough issues that you've sought out evals by an SLP. You ended your speech therapy because you moved (yes?), not because they said you were done. And not only is Barton NOT a dyslexia test, but she had an odd pattern of response that occurred AFTER what seems like significant intervention on your part.

 

So to me, having a ds with significant speech problems and dyslexia AND a kid who had neither, you've pushed into an area where you already know you have SOMETHING going on, haven't nailed exactly what (or haven't disclosed it to the board here) and are getting funky results on testing because you've done SOME intervention but not ENOUGH to get her over the hump.

 

In general, it's going to mean you need to find another SLP, do fresh testing, see what's going on. And the sucky thing is she might have qualified under SLD reading, but your CTOPP isn't going to show it unless there's major discrepancy from IQ, meaning you'd need a full psych eval. We eval'd my ds at newly 6, after him having multiple months of gently paced, almost child-led (not aggressive) LIPS, and it had clearly bumped his scores, much the way it looks like your interventions have bumped her scores. He was diagnosable, because we got a full CTOPP and IQ and could still see the discrepancy.

 

I think in the case of your dd I would start with the SLP eval, because you know you have unresolved issues there. Language development issues are also going to affect her reading, since you need to UNDERSTAND the language you're trying to decode. When we finally, finally got my ds decoding, it then become obvious he couldn't UNDERSTAND what he was reading! So the SLP could help you on multiple fronts here.

 

As far as failing section A of the Barton test, that's really astonishing, honestly. I think passing B and C is because you've intervened effectively. However to fail section A is HIGHLY concerning. My ds actually had the issue that he could not repeat a simple, short sentence at that age. It reflected his language problems and was something we had to work on multiple ways. I would just be very concerned about this. I hope people are actually looking at the Barton pre-test (like I am right now) to realize what she's saying this dc cannot do. These are basic skills, and according to Barton a newly 5 year old who is typically developing SHOULD be able to pass this. So you have holes remaining that need intervention and you need (at least) an SLP eval to get it sorted out. I would pursue the SLP eval now and the psych eval as she turns 6. If the SLP can run a CTOPP, that would be good. Even with your intervention, it will give you a RAN/RAS score, which would be a latent indicator of dyslexia.

 

Remember, the amount you have to intervene is SO LOW at this age, that nominal interventions can make the disabilities less obvious. Given another 6 months to a year, the NT peers will pull ahead, making the disability appear again. This happened with my ds, where I used intervention materials specific to dyscalculia on him, and the psych said he couldn't see the math SLD. Well it was there, and after another 6 months (where his peers had more time to pull ahead) it become VERY OBVIOUS to the next two psychs. (Yes, we've seen, um, a lotta psychs, lol. He's sorta complex.)

 

So that's why I'm suggesting you be conservative, go back to where you *know* you had a whole (speech/language issues), fill that in, and pursue the rest with time.

I've been processing a lot related to this and I will work on a post over in learning challenges board this afternoon. A big issue is availability of help where we are and available funds. A big issue I have is the concept of waiting to qualify. Why does a child have to fall behind to get help? As a former sped teacher in the public schools I have issues with this concept. That said, that is part of the conversation for the other thread I'll start later. For now I am fascinated by the diverging opinions on this thread!

 

 

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You don't think developmental readiness is a real thing if learning disorders are in play?

 

Maybe I have a weird kid. Her internal grammar mechanism still hasn't developed correctly, but she reads two years above her age level despite stealth dyslexia. 

 

I think "wait and see" for reading and maths is perfectly acceptable for a 5yo, even if there are red flags for learning difficulties. 

 

As a future speech & language pathologist, I would strongly recommend language intervention for children with language difficulties. Super Duper's Grammar Processing Program is a program I would encourage you to look into. Jean Gilliam DeGaetano also has written a lot of useful books.

 

The child with LD's may not be ready for phonics at 5 but it's important to do intervention to build up that underlying foundation of oral language and phonological awareness.

 

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 A big issue is availability of help where we are and available funds. A big issue I have is the concept of waiting to qualify. 

 

Do you live close to a Scottish Rite Language Center? They offer free speech therapy and reading intervention to kids who qualify. Be forewarned that you will probably need an IQ test in order to get services there.

 

I need to get back in touch with the local SR center because we put it on hold last year when my daughter's hearing loss was discovered. Now that it's coming up on 6 months since her cochlear implant surgery and the rehab for that has gone well, I should contact them about putting her back on their waiting list.

 

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You don't think developmental readiness is a real thing if learning disorders are in play?

 

Maybe I have a weird kid. Her internal grammar mechanism still hasn't developed correctly, but she reads two years above her age level despite stealth dyslexia. 

 

I think "wait and see" for reading and maths is perfectly acceptable for a 5yo, even if there are red flags for learning difficulties. 

 

 

As a future speech & language pathologist, I would strongly recommend language intervention for children with language difficulties. Super Duper's Grammar Processing Program is a program I would encourage you to look into. Jean Gilliam DeGaetano also has written a lot of useful books.

 

The child with LD's may not be ready for phonics at 5 but it's important to do intervention to build up that underlying foundation of oral language and phonological awareness.

 

 

Not to pick on Rosie, but I will say that Crimson is right on this.  Just because something is developmental (as in a delay, a disability) doesn't mean it shouldn't be intervened on.  My ds also had low language comprehension, and we did the GPP that Crimson mentioned.  It's AWESOME.  During that time we did NO reading instruction, no Barton, and my ds began reading.  And my ds has out and out dyslexia, diagnosed by a neuropsych and triple confirmed by more psychs.  He finished 1st grade reading, with comprehension, at a 5th/6th grade reading level. So you don't know what would happen if you intervened for the disability.  

 

I need to do more with him.  His reading and willingness to read has leveled out again.  When we bump his language, he starts reading on his own.  I think his ability to "read" has outpaced his language.  

 

I think that when people say their kid started reading at 12 naturally and imply he couldn't have read earlier, they're not providing CELF or CASL scores to show what COULD have been done to get it going earlier.  I personally think it's a bunch of crap to say my ds should have had to wait 5-7 years to read just because he had a language delay.  It was easy and fun to do the intervention.  We're going to do more, because there's another 2 book series like GPP.  

 

Just because people say something happened or worked or had to wait on "development" doesn't mean they're showing up with numbers to justify their claims.  I have the numbers and the scores.  I KNOW my ds' scores jumped from 25th percentile single sentence comprehension to 50th and I SAW my ds begin reading as a result.  The whole wait because it just happens eventually think is just needless when we're talking actual disabilities that could receive easy, fun, pleasant, jolly, effective intervention.

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The process was hard for two of mine two. My middle child who had to work hard is now reading well and above grade level but spelling is another story. My youngest sounds very similar to yours in strength and weaknesses but without speech issues to the degree you describe. I bumped up her phonemic awareness by working on it this summer and she has a lot of improvement but I can tell this is still going to be a lot of work to get reading down and it is hard to know how to proceed.

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This is interesting - I'm going to look into this book more. This is what frustrates me about my background in SPEd - we were trained to help kids compensate for their disabilities, but never really intervened in their disabilities. basically, you've got to deal with the cards you were dealt, so lets give you more time and change what we teach you so that we can say you're learning and skate you through with Cs and pass you out of "formal" education. You'll never amount to much academically and there's nothing we can do about it.

 

I am fighting to get out of that mindset and firmly believe that there should be something I can do to help her find her way through the weeds, so to speak, without getting lost in those weeds and be unable to succeed academically. 

 

 

Not to pick on Rosie, but I will say that Crimson is right on this.  Just because something is developmental (as in a delay, a disability) doesn't mean it shouldn't be intervened on.  My ds also had low language comprehension, and we did the GPP that Crimson mentioned.  It's AWESOME.  During that time we did NO reading instruction, no Barton, and my ds began reading.  And my ds has out and out dyslexia, diagnosed by a neuropsych and triple confirmed by more psychs.  He finished 1st grade reading, with comprehension, at a 5th/6th grade reading level (I had him tested!), which outpaces his decoding by 2-3 grades.  THAT is what happens when you have a high IQ and you intervene for the disability.  

 

I need to do more with him.  His reading and willingness to read has leveled out again.  When we bump his language, he starts reading on his own.  I think his ability to "read" has outpaced his language.  

 

I think that when people say their kid started reading at 12 naturally and imply he couldn't have read earlier, they're not providing CELF or CASL scores to show what COULD have been done to get it going earlier.  I personally think it's a bunch of crap to say my ds should have had to wait 5-7 years to read just because he had a language delay.  It was easy and fun to do the intervention.  We're going to do more, because there's another 2 book series like GPP.  

 

Just because people say something happened or worked or had to wait on "development" doesn't mean they're showing up with numbers to justify their claims.  I have the numbers and the scores.  I KNOW my ds' scores jumped from 25th percentile single sentence comprehension to 50th and I SAW my ds begin reading as a result.  The whole wait because it just happens eventually think is just needless when we're talking actual disabilities that could receive easy, fun, pleasant, jolly, effective intervention.

 

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As a future speech & language pathologist, I would strongly recommend language intervention for children with language difficulties. Super Duper's Grammar Processing Program is a program I would encourage you to look into. Jean Gilliam DeGaetano also has written a lot of useful books.

 

The child with LD's may not be ready for phonics at 5 but it's important to do intervention to build up that underlying foundation of oral language and phonological awareness.

 

 

Certainly, but it won't work until the child is ready to absorb it. (Or at least it doesn't on my kids.) This is not just me spouting my unqualified opinion. I bowed to the cult of the expert and consulted a speech pathologist with 30 years experience, following the recommendations of OhElizabeth on how to choose one. She's been great, hasn't provided a single, useful piece of advice in about 5 years, and yet every time we've been back for evaluations, dd and I have closed the gap between her and her age peers by half.

 

I don't understand your link. It looks like drilling a kid until they eventually decide they are willing to humour you. Maybe I have had weird kids.

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Rosie, I have to agree with you that it's hard to translate options in one country to options in another.  Your availability is different.  Even here, if I called 100 SLPs (which I could, given where I live), it would be such a CRAP SHOOT as to whether it would even be worth the money.  I did the intervention myself, which tells you about how much I thought an SLP would be helpful. ;)  I could go on a little rant about the arrogance, the high charges, the lack of motivation to be excellent, the laziness, the equating of sentimentality (which I don't need) with effectiveness (which I do).  

 

The GPP is fascinating because it's systematic in how it presents things.  They use swanky terms, but basically they take nothing for granted and build incrementally.  So they introduce say plural of a concept and then build it, never letting it drop.  Eventually you just get more and more things built up.  I agree you may be doing that with your own lifestyle things.  

 

And I agree, compliance is always an issue.

 

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I don't understand your link. It looks like drilling a kid until they eventually decide they are willing to humour you. Maybe I have had weird kids.

 

For my ds, the GPP was hard, so it was challenging, sort of a logic puzzle.  I could definitely see where if a dc already had the skills, it would be boring.  For a dc who actually NEEDS it, the GPP is humorous and challenging without being too hard.  My ds was worn out after a couple pages of it, and you could see his progress from day to day.  There was no humoring me or boredom.  

 

So I think we're just talking different starting points, kwim?  :)

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Five is small for reading.  I'd put it aside for a bit.  My son was absolutely not ready to sit and learn to read at five.  At 6.5 he is - he still gets frustrated more easily than my girls who started reading at 4 and 5.  OTOH, he started blending and actually reading words as soon as he learned the letter sounds, with almost no effort, while it took my girls longer to do both the sounds and other reading skills.

 

If there are speech related issues for her age, spend her time and energy doing something with those instead.  Reading can wait until she is more likely to be developmentally ready.

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For my ds, the GPP was hard, so it was challenging, sort of a logic puzzle.  I could definitely see where if a dc already had the skills, it would be boring.  For a dc who actually NEEDS it, the GPP is humorous and challenging without being too hard.  My ds was worn out after a couple pages of it, and you could see his progress from day to day.  There was no humoring me or boredom.  

 

So I think we're just talking different starting points, kwim?   :)

 

I've always suspected other people had more obliging children...

 

You are definitely describing a sub-species of child I have no experience with. Or maybe we define NEED differently? Most people use that to mean the need to remediate what society calls deficiencies. My children, back when they were early intervention age, had no respect at all for society and were born with virtually no desire to please even their doting mum. NEED, therefore, was predominantly determined by their little attitudes. So often in these conversations, it seems people are telling me I can force the horse to drink. I can't and I'm flabbergasted than anyone else's horses are that obliging!

 

At various times I had to succumb to other people's determination that I engage the kids with early intervention. The early intervention people couldn't do a thing because they had no power to make the kids care about other people's goals. They couldn't force the horses to drink either.

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I've always suspected other people had more obliging children...

 

You are definitely describing a sub-species of child I have no experience with. Or maybe we define NEED differently? Most people use that to mean the need to remediate what society calls deficiencies. My children, back when they were early intervention age, had no respect at all for society and were born with virtually no desire to please even their doting mum. NEED, therefore, was predominantly determined by their little attitudes. So often in these conversations, it seems people are telling me I can force the horse to drink. I can't and I'm flabbergasted than anyone else's horses are that obliging!

 

At various times I had to succumb to other people's determination that I engage the kids with early intervention. The early intervention people couldn't do a thing because they had no power to make the kids care about other people's goals. They couldn't force the horses to drink either.

 

Ugh, yes.

 

My son has seen a speech path a few times, and they gave us wrk to do at home.  His issues aren't serious, he doesn't form some souds properly, but he can, he just needs to practice.

 

Does he want to proctice with me?  Generally, no, it doesn't matter what fun thing I think up, he sees that I am trying to fool him into something.  On the rare occasions he is willing he makes it clear that "I owe him."  Unfortunately it really is very difficult to make someone practice making sounds if they don't want to.

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I've always suspected other people had more obliging children...

 

You are definitely describing a sub-species of child I have no experience with. Or maybe we define NEED differently? Most people use that to mean the need to remediate what society calls deficiencies. My children, back when they were early intervention age, had no respect at all for society and were born with virtually no desire to please even their doting mum. NEED, therefore, was predominantly determined by their little attitudes. So often in these conversations, it seems people are telling me I can force the horse to drink. I can't and I'm flabbergasted than anyone else's horses are that obliging!

 

At various times I had to succumb to other people's determination that I engage the kids with early intervention. The early intervention people couldn't do a thing because they had no power to make the kids care about other people's goals. They couldn't force the horses to drink either.

 

Oh I totally get it, lol.  My ds has ASD and is the same way.  Compliance is a huge, huge issue with him.  It's why we brought in an ABA team.  I'm not saying you should, but just that I *do* get it and am *not* saying to ramrod over them or that you even can.  My ds, for all his compliance issues, actually really liked GPP and was fine with it.  Like it was a preferred thing with him and something he would do willingly when choosing from the pile.  But I have this observation (first given to me by someone else and shared by me now) that kids sometimes crave things that are actually therapy for them, that they create their own therapy with their interests when you give them room to do so.  Now sometimes that needs some tailoring, because my ds would perseverate and get stuck and do something to the point of it being unhealthy and destabilizing for him.  

 

Anyways, he enjoyed GPP and didn't have behaviors with it.  As long as the amount was such that he could handle it (stopping when he was worn out), he was fine and even really enjoyed it.  And fwiw, my ds has very serious behaviors that are level 3 on the ratings scales.  Like I really do get that if he wasn't onboard he wouldn't be doing it.  He's extremely challenging to work with and compliance is THE reason we had to bring in an ABA team.

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Ugh, yes.

 

My son has seen a speech path a few times, and they gave us wrk to do at home.  His issues aren't serious, he doesn't form some souds properly, but he can, he just needs to practice.

 

Does he want to proctice with me?  Generally, no, it doesn't matter what fun thing I think up, he sees that I am trying to fool him into something.  On the rare occasions he is willing he makes it clear that "I owe him."  Unfortunately it really is very difficult to make someone practice making sounds if they don't want to.

 

Our best SLP for this had ABA training.  It's an issue we had to deal with when he was younger and just beginning, and now it's an issue all over again now that he's older and more aware.  It all goes back to your ABA basics though (motivation, getting what they want).  We make sure the situation is very motivating (that participating helps the activity move forward and the activity is a strongly preferred activity) and it's non-optional and built into routine.  But I get it.  We've taken a break from our regular SLP (for a variety of reasons, including that we'll be getting a palatal expander) and things are dumping to me.  It's so not fun.  But it's always back to basics. I try to make sure it's on the schedule, so he knows it's coming, followed by a preferred activity, etc. etc.  

 

But it's true, they'll let someone else do what they won't let Mom do.  The work is HARD trying to get automaticity on these things, and when someone else does it, it's sort of in a routine, non-negotiable, etc.  

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I don't have the sort of advice you are already receiving, but I thought I would chime in on my experience.

 

I have four out of five kids who were significantly delayed talkers including one who I had tested through the PS for speech. (Phonological processing problems, qualified for services but we didn't peruse them for a variety of reasons.) Four of my five kids were/are/will be late readers. Only my talk-on-time kid was relatively painless to teach to read and read fluently at grade level by 6. Others were 7, almost 10, and still working on the last two. There is something to the speech-language delay thing.

 

I don't start early or switch programs. Reading and potty training are my two parenting bugaboos.

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I don't know but teaching reading has been a real pain in my you know what. I feel like I've been teaching my oldest (almost 8) to read for years and she still isn't very fluent. She CAN read level 3 books, but it isn't really easy for her. And my second is almost 6 and likes learning to read, flew through AAR 1, is doing PP now, but geez... It just takes so long! I hear of allharcharik@umc.edu these kids teaching themselves to read at age 3 and I'm hoping and praying I get just ONE like that. Haha.

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For my ds, the GPP was hard, so it was challenging, sort of a logic puzzle.  I could definitely see where if a dc already had the skills, it would be boring.  For a dc who actually NEEDS it, the GPP is humorous and challenging without being too hard.

 

We're using the other book from the same series (Level 1 of The Processing Program) and while *I* find it boring, it's exactly what my DD needs. I never needed to explicitly teach this stuff to my other kids because they just picked it up all on their own, but they don't have a language-based LD.

 

On Friday her teletherapy SLP and I just figured out that DD does not understand the difference between "we" & "they". This is a child who will turn 8 in less than 3 months and has been working on pronouns for YEARS in speech therapy & applied behavioral analysis therapy. But she hadn't picked up that "we" includes herself and "they" doesn't. :banghead: If it's not explicitly taught, chances are high that she won't figure it out on her own  :( 

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Teaching my oldest to read was painful. We started at 5 (as required for kindergarten). It was grueling. He hated it. Tears and tears (maybe more from me than from him lol) but we stuck with it even though nothing was sticking AT ALL. And then we plodded through 1st grade like that with OPGTR (only up to lesson 60 maybe? The one with soft and hard g) , and he learned CVC words.. kinda sorta. Still couldn't get the vowel sounds right. Then suddenly in second grade he started reading. Lots of reading. For pleasure. I finally had to say "Put that book down and come do school" which felt completely wrong and completely joyous at the same time. :)  I was so terrified he would secretly have undiscovered learning disorders if I didn't plod along careful -- I honestly don't know why I was so afraid. Learning disorders that don't show up in ANYTHING else? And what exactly was I going to do about it by continuing to nudge through curriculum. Here they wouldn't do anything diagnostic for him until late second grade/third grade anyway. So I tortured him for 2 years before he was ready, and as soon as he was ready it was fine. I have decided to gauge future kids on readiness, at least up until 6.5 years old when we can make a decision about whether an evaluation is needed. That 18 months makes a huge difference. 

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You know, I'm sitting here pondering all of this and realized something. We've developed our entire homeschool around delight, interest led learning. We have worked hard to find curriculum that is challenging and interesting and provides a way to learn how to learn and to enjoy the process of learning all at the same time. Except for phonics. Phonics is dry and boring and basic drill. 

 

Is there a curriculum that is not dry? A phonics program that inspires delight instead of boring drill and practice of letters and sounds? 

 

We found All About Reading to be about as much fun as a phonics program could be. And the phonological awareness games in Logic of English, Foundations A, were also fun. (we found the rest of the program difficult, and switched to All About Reading). All About Reading Pre-Level starts with phonological awareness, lots of games, matching, etc. It's definitely more fun for a lot of kids than just using a book, for sure. Before using it we tried Teach Your Child to Read in 100 Easy Lessons, Phonics Pathways, Ordinary Parent's Guide, and two others I don't remember the names of. Sigh. 

 

All About Reading is the one she enjoys doing (what a difference) and actually worked for her. She does have speech issues, so maybe that was part of it. 

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We're using the other book from the same series (Level 1 of The Processing Program) and while *I* find it boring, it's exactly what my DD needs. I never needed to explicitly teach this stuff to my other kids because they just picked it up all on their own, but they don't have a language-based LD.

 

On Friday her teletherapy SLP and I just figured out that DD does not understand the difference between "we" & "they". This is a child who will turn 8 in less than 3 months and has been working on pronouns for YEARS in speech therapy & applied behavioral analysis therapy. But she hadn't picked up that "we" includes herself and "they" doesn't. :banghead: If it's not explicitly taught, chances are high that she won't figure it out on her own  :(

 

ABSOLUTELY! We did pronouns in GPP.  TPP is the other set I wanted to get.  I don't actually know how they differ, but I sorta took the differences to be that TPP was focusing more on sentence structure and higher level skills, and GPP was lower.  GPP hits pronouns, singular/plurals, prepositions, really basic, foundational stuff, and yes my ds needed those.  

 

For us, the language issues explained *part* of the seemingly oppositional behavior.  Not all, but it was part of it.  He literally wasn't understanding what he was being asked to do.  We had no clue, because at the time he was listening to Great Courses on his kindle.  Like talk about crazy contradictory!  But when you gave him a simple instruction (put it on the table) he was stumbling over the pronouns, the prepositions, etc.  

 

So yeah, I was assuming TPP was more advanced and GPP was more foundational.  Has she been through GPP?  Or maybe she's going to need more work to generalize the skills?  Like you could coordinate and have the SLP team (you) tell your ABA people what things you're working on so they can intentionally carry them over and try to get some DTT with them, kwim?  

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Thinking aloud here... Could I use the table of contents and informally assess whether the skills taught in GPP are lacking? For example I know that when doing a basic math assessment she was easily able to put something on, under, behind, etc.

 

It's a lot of money to spend if it is not needed.

 

 

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