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If you have a dc who has a reading disability, developmental disability, stealth disability, etc. that affected their reading, how high...


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How high did they get to for a reading level in high school? Like say before 20. 

My ds has a pile of issues that affect his ability to read and comprehend. It's stupid, but I'm trying to decide if I can start getting rid of books. If the writing is on the wall, I can start letting things go. I have boxes of books like Landmark History, We Were There, American Heritage Junior Library, etc. He's not especially a fan of me reading aloud, and I don't think I can get audio for these older, oop type books. He doesn't do well with TTS (text to speech) and these are print anyway.

It's sad, because the syntax is such that he would understand some of them or at least find them a good stretch.

How did you handle this? And it's not like there are NO BOOKS on the planet if I let these go, haha. But they're very nice books. 

The double kicker is they're somewhat collectible/valuable, and I don't have the energy to deal with ebay and trying to sell them. 

So what did your dc in that situation (with disabilities that affect reading and comprehension significantly) read from ages 14-19 and did they print read or do read alouds? What would you do differently? 

Another theory is I could keep some and use them for speech therapy for him to work on the language comprehension, haha.

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I'm not sure you can assess things so generally speaking bc your ds has so many additional comorbidities.  My dyslexic kids have been functioning on par with their grade level or advanced beyond that by high school.  Spelling and reading speed has beent their biggest stumbling block, not actual reading level.

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I did not read until I was 12.  By the end of high school (age 17.5) I could read young adult fantasy books. I could not read nonfiction and I could not read classics -- the reading level was just too high.  By the time I entered grad school at (21.5) I could slowly get through peer reviewed papers in my field, but it was a struggle. 

It would have helped me immensely to have listened to audio books throughout high school. I also would have helped me to find a magazine that I was keen on, like National Geographic, that I had time set aside to read. 

 

 

Edited by lewelma
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52 minutes ago, lewelma said:

I did not read until I was 12.  By the end of high school (age 17.5) I could read young adult fantasy books. I could not read nonfiction and I could not read classics -- the reading level was just too high.  By the time I entered grad school at (21.5) I could slowly get through peer reviewed papers in my field, but it was a struggle. 

It would have helped me immensely to have listened to audio books throughout high school. I also would have helped me to find a magazine that I was keen on, like National Geographic, that I had time set aside to read. 

 

 

That was immensely helpful, thank you! I think you're right about being ok with things that are *short* like magazine articles and things that are *high interest* for him. Yes, we do a ton with audiobooks. However he's having comprehension issues even with those. I'm a little discouraged, because it's hitting me that that no matter what I do, some of the excellent literature is just going to be inaccessible to him. There's just so much more that makes literature literature (complexity of plot, unusual ways they phrase language, etc.) and he just gets swamped.

Can I ask you what you read now as an adult? Do you read fiction or nonfiction for pleasure? Do you keep it *short* like magazines or read longer books? I think you're onto something here, that I need to look at other people farther down the road with his challenges and see how they handle it as adults. I thought I could just "fix" this, but if I can't fix it all, then I need to figure out what the best version of it looks like and roll with it.

What seems to work really well with him is high support, brief sessions of reading. So I hand him a worksheet and he reads it and does it. Or we read a short selection from the National Geographic reader. Or he's reading text on his Civ 6 app. He's actually a phenomenal little reader, for someone who doesn't choose to read, lol. You'll literally NEVER see him pick up books! But if you will sit with him and read every other sentence and help him stay calm, he does fine.

So if someone had compelled you to read independently 30 minutes a day (a la Book Whisperer) and been very flexible on material, would that have been helpful or harmful? 

Is there anything you do as an adult that makes reading more easy or more comfortable for you?

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7 hours ago, 8filltheheart said:

Spelling and reading speed has beent their biggest stumbling block, not actual reading level.

I know, I was looking at some of my American Heritage Junior Library books and remembering that your kids read them. I just don't see him getting there and I don't know what I can do that would possibly make them accessible. Need any? Haha. I'm sort of making myself hit a little wall here, because I've got thousands of books (literally) that I bought for dd that are worthless for ds. So I'm beginning to cull and clear, sigh.

Landmarks, We Were There, Dear America, you name it I've probably got it. She was this astonishing reader, and he only reads if you sit right with him and keep him engaged, alternating lines. He enjoys what we read that way, but it's just crazy that we have to.

I'm just talking out loud here right now. I don't know if there's a chemical that would help with that, or if it's just the overall picture of his issues. We were realizing today he does the same thing with eating. He eats a little, fills acceptably full (to the okay level, not actually full) and then RUNS off. So then he's hungry again in 20-30 minutes, because he's not actually sitting and finishing his meal! 

And that's not so different from reading, when you think about it. He has the technical ability to read material, but he doesn't have the maturity to tell himself to do it. That's how it comes across. And I'd feel really dumb if it's just woo need some med. But we talked meds till we were blue in the face, and with his level of aggression most ADHD meds are off off the table. 

What I'm trying to do on his mental health is get him through the next few months with working through more of the Interoception materials and see if that bumps his self awareness up that he can self advocate and get us more language about what's going on. I finally got a referral to a different children's hospital that has a psych clinic that could help us by tele. So there's kind of that hurdle, are we ready for that, would that help. I don't know. Those are big steps, sigh. 

Right now he's on a dab of anxiety meds and some supplements. Puberty or pre-puberty has started, with jumps in growth, and it has been kind of destabilizing everything. But this reading gig has been this way all along, so I think it's more than that. He just has really deep comprehension and language issues. They were masked by his ability to memorize language, but they ran deep. He failed a *preschool* expressive language test at age 10, sigh. I'm pretty sure he would pass now, but that's for real how much we had to back up and fill in. 

The MindWings/Story Grammar Marker people have a book on discourse and complexity. Maybe that would get me more info on this. Dunno. There's also more work to do on syntax. It's never ending, lol. 

Anyways, that's all, thanks. Just thinking out loud.

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2 hours ago, PeterPan said:

That was immensely helpful, thank you! I think you're right about being ok with things that are *short* like magazine articles and things that are *high interest* for him. Yes, we do a ton with audiobooks. However he's having comprehension issues even with those. I'm a little discouraged, because it's hitting me that that no matter what I do, some of the excellent literature is just going to be inaccessible to him. There's just so much more that makes literature literature (complexity of plot, unusual ways they phrase language, etc.) and he just gets swamped.

Can I ask you what you read now as an adult? Do you read fiction or nonfiction for pleasure? Do you keep it *short* like magazines or read longer books? I think you're onto something here, that I need to look at other people farther down the road with his challenges and see how they handle it as adults. I thought I could just "fix" this, but if I can't fix it all, then I need to figure out what the best version of it looks like and roll with it.

What seems to work really well with him is high support, brief sessions of reading. So I hand him a worksheet and he reads it and does it. Or we read a short selection from the National Geographic reader. Or he's reading text on his Civ 6 app. He's actually a phenomenal little reader, for someone who doesn't choose to read, lol. You'll literally NEVER see him pick up books! But if you will sit with him and read every other sentence and help him stay calm, he does fine.

So if someone had compelled you to read independently 30 minutes a day (a la Book Whisperer) and been very flexible on material, would that have been helpful or harmful? 

Is there anything you do as an adult that makes reading more easy or more comfortable for you?

As an adult, I read only nonfiction.  I can listen to fiction if I have to, but I don't enjoy it at all.  I am currently reading Piketty's Capital and ideology.  But my best type of reading is active reading -- I ready textbooks and do problems or write about ideas. It is good, because I can read 1 paragraph, and then process it in writing.  I have lots and lots of notebooks. My best, favorite, and most rewarding reading is where I read and then work with the concept and interact with the text to make sense of it. Write, take notes, do problems, make diagrams, etc. To this day, if I just read without writing, I really get nothing out of it.  This is likely why I don't like fiction, not even to listen to. 

I think that 'required' reading is a bad idea.  I think required *time* to read is what you should do.  But I would suggest that you model it.  Both of you sit for 30 minutes in the same room and have SSR - Silent sustained reading.  

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I remember in highschool being asked to read classics like 1984. Not only could I not read the words, I could not understand the concepts.  I got the cliffnotes and had NO IDEA what the book was about.  I remember being given the 'Invisible Man' by Ellison in high school. I tried to read it.  But I just kept waiting for him to go invisible.  I never understood ANYTHING about the book, like not even that it was about a black man who *felt* invisible.  It went completely over my head.  It would not have helped to have an audiobook, the concepts were just too much for me. 

My savior was time. I just needed to get older. 

I will also add, that even though I went to a daily afterschool private reading program from that age of 10 to 11, it was not until I was 35 and teaching my older to read that I found out that two vowels side by side made a sound.  So oa in boat and coat made the O sound.  I was so surprised.  I had no idea. Like NONE.  My brain was just not wired to recognize patterns in language.  I just never noticed nor did I internalize all the phonics I was taught and quite happily memorized.  This made spelling very very hard because I memorized every word like a phone number. And all reading I ever did was sight reading.  I was taught phonics, but I just never made any sense of it. I was 35 when the epiphany came. So just because you teach it, and they pass a test, does not mean that they are *using* it to read. 

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My DS made it through level 6 of Barton before life got in the way.  In high school, he was able make it through on-level text if it was short. He came to really enjoy poetry. Longer material was done with audio support. He is making it through a college level EMT class right now and is doing okay. He will never be an A student, but he is meeting the standard. He prefers the print textbook even though we did purchase the online textbook that came with audio support. It really helps that the class is very interesting to him and still has some in person time. He has not asked for disability support yet in college, but he isn’t planning to continue after this semester.
In general life, he does still have trouble with reading. He will often have to read something several times to understand. I have seen this with letters from his college, and he got a letter form the bank yesterday that he couldn’t understand at all until I helped him. Since he had no previous knowledge of what the bank was talking about, it made no sense to him.

The only things he reads for pleasure is online forums, gaming stuff, and online fan fiction. When he was younger, I would buy him Pokemon video games just because the required reading to get through everything in the game.  Video games were the only thing he would choose to read on his own. 

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12 hours ago, lewelma said:

But my best type of reading is active reading -- I ready textbooks and do problems or write about ideas.

This may explain why he does so well with worksheets! They'll have a section to read at the top and then questions for him to process. He does quite well with this. And when we read together, we stop to process, ask questions, relate it to other things we know. Again this works for him.

Well good, that was very helpful. Your experience may very well be where he pans out.

12 hours ago, lewelma said:

Not only could I not read the words, I could not understand the concepts. 

Yes!!! The most recent testing we have again confirmed that he is 2 ½-3 years behind developmentally. There are things he's literally just not ready to understand, despite his high IQ and good attitude.

12 hours ago, lewelma said:

I just never noticed nor did I internalize all the phonics I was taught and quite happily memorized.  This made spelling very very hard because I memorized every word like a phone number. And all reading I ever did was sight reading.  I was taught phonics, but I just never made any sense of it. I was 35 when the epiphany came. So just because you teach it, and they pass a test, does not mean that they are *using* it to read. 

Yeah, I have a feeling that is going on. I completely agree that spelling is developmental and linked to how he understands language. It's why I completely dropped spelling as we were learning to read, because it was clear he did not understand it but was memorizing, a parlor trick. 

What I'm doing now is doing the dictation typing like you suggested, but I'm doing it by spelling patterns. Very slowly. I'm *hoping* it will make things click for him. I agree he memorized the OG/phonics we did just enough to read and that it didn't connect meaningfully as spelling for him. 

7 hours ago, City Mouse said:

In general life, he does still have trouble with reading. He will often have to read something several times to understand. I have seen this with letters from his college, and he got a letter form the bank yesterday that he couldn’t understand at all until I helped him. Since he had no previous knowledge of what the bank was talking about, it made no sense to him.

That's a really interesting point about life level reading, hmm. 

7 hours ago, City Mouse said:

Video games were the only thing he would choose to read on his own. 

Yup.

Well that's a really good point that I should think through life skill reading he might need. Thanks!

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Last night, DS was following a recipe from one of those mail order meal places, and he needed assistance understanding the directions. He read the words correctly, but he did not understand what to do. I don’t know if that was strictly a reading comprehension type issue or if it was due to a lack of experience with cooking. I am going to guess that it was a combination of things. My DS cooks for himself and watches cooking shows on YouTube, but he does not often try to follow recipes or read cookbooks, so he does not get exposed to cooking vocabulary in written form. 

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My 24yo son has dyslexia and is also gifted.  When he was young his dyslexia masked his giftedness.  At age 17.5 his reading score on the ACT was at the 93rd percentile, but it was split--97th percentile for social studies/science and 86th percentile for arts/literature.  His ACT science score (which I consider to be related to reading comprehension) was at the 99th percentile.  He had 1.5x extended time.

When he was in college, he never said anything about having trouble with the reading, and I don't think he did.  He has no problems in his adult life reading (and writing) highly technical material or anything else for that matter.

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10 hours ago, EKS said:

He has no problems in his adult life reading (and writing) highly technical material or anything else for that matter.

I think it’s the autism and language issues glitching it for ds. 
 

 

10 hours ago, City Mouse said:

Last night, DS was following a recipe from one of those mail order meal places, and he needed assistance understanding the directions. He read the words correctly, but he did not understand what to do. I don’t know if that was strictly a reading comprehension type issue or if it was due to a lack of experience with cooking. I am going to guess that it was a combination of things. My DS cooks for himself and watches cooking shows on YouTube, but he does not often try to follow recipes or read cookbooks, so he does not get exposed to cooking vocabulary in written form. 

that’s such a good point!

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Dd is dyslexic and almost certainly an Aspie, and was reading on a year 7 level at the end of grade 3. She's at the end of year 7 now, and her reading skills are still not quite back to where she was when she left me. She reads for information and for enjoyment, but often doesn't notice when she's not understanding something. She knows she doesn't understand sarcasm, but most of her lack of understanding looks like a lack of general knowledge on the surface, yet her general knowledge seems to surpass her classmates. She's really not good with cause and effect sequencing and I think that impacts her ability to intuit or work out what she doesn't understand. Life is a mess of random nonsense, so why would she even remember to try and find meaning. Something like that. My brother and I lecture her on everything and anything, both content for background knowledge and how to think about stuff. I wonder sometimes when we'll stop doing that.

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On 11/13/2020 at 11:58 AM, PeterPan said:

How high did they get to for a reading level in high school? Like say before 20. 

My ds has a pile of issues that affect his ability to read and comprehend. It's stupid, but I'm trying to decide if I can start getting rid of books. If the writing is on the wall, I can start letting things go. I have boxes of books like Landmark History, We Were There, American Heritage Junior Library, etc. He's not especially a fan of me reading aloud, and I don't think I can get audio for these older, oop type books. He doesn't do well with TTS (text to speech) and these are print anyway.

It's sad, because the syntax is such that he would understand some of them or at least find them a good stretch.

How did you handle this? And it's not like there are NO BOOKS on the planet if I let these go, haha. But they're very nice books. 

The double kicker is they're somewhat collectible/valuable, and I don't have the energy to deal with ebay and trying to sell them. 

So what did your dc in that situation (with disabilities that affect reading and comprehension significantly) read from ages 14-19 and did they print read or do read alouds? What would you do differently? 

Another theory is I could keep some and use them for speech therapy for him to work on the language comprehension, haha.

This is an impossible metric. 
So I’ll preface this with a statistic and a story. If a parent has dyslexia, likely 50% of offspring will as well. DH is dyslexic. 
 

We have three diagnosed dyslexics (each diagnosed by a different doctor, partially because I didn’t believe in dyslexia. Ooh, the irony.) I have seven in total I think are dyslexic - though I haven’t tried to teach DS to read yet, but he shows classic speech patterns. So the percentages are pretty about correct. 
 

But how well do they read? That varies widely. The bigger piece of this puzzle, in my VERY limited experience, is working memory. 
 

I have a son who has an amazing working memory and an awesome visual memory. When he was tested for dyslexia his ability to read “real” words - tested out of 12th grade level. His actual ability to spell as tested by ability to spell made up words? The test only shows 4th grade level and above. He tested genetically “below 4th grade level.” He was entering 9th grade at the time. He’s a senior in college, on scholarship, and scored a perfect 36 on the reading portion of the ACT. But he’s reading via memory. DD, now in college, is moderate - reads well and does well in her courses. (She’s been dual enrolled for two years.) She’s not a great speller. DS, 15, is in Level 5 of Barton, extensive remediation, has a low WM, severe dyslexia, will struggle with reading long term. Gifted mechanically, but I’m not sure he’ll ever read easily though it’s so much better than two years ago. 
 

So what I’m saying is: No one knows. It’s more than what can be boiled down to having a disability. There’s so much more to the whole picture and that whole person. As homeschooling moms, we persevere in doing good to them, but how well they succeed in any one area is dependent on more than just our teaching, which is both comforting and terrifying. 

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Oh and - I’ll say that my oldest DS read books (in high school)  I would NEVER have guessed at 13 he was going to read. My second DS? Reads books because I insist but they are easier at fluency (think Golden Goblet) but read Oedipus Rex, Oresteia, and Homer for a Lit class via Audible this fall and loved them. I give the teacher the credit for the enthusiasm. But I really wondered, even at the beginning of the year if he’d be able to understand and discuss.

By 14, I had a good grasp of my girls’ abilities. But I think my boys grew by leaps in high school and I hope that’s encouraging.  

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On 11/14/2020 at 1:18 AM, PeterPan said:

The MindWings/Story Grammar Marker people have a book on discourse and complexity. Maybe that would get me more info on this. Dunno. There's also more work to do on syntax. It's never ending, lol. 

Our tutor really like this set: https://mindwingconcepts.com/products/deepening-discourse-and-thought-3?_pos=7&_sid=f804b2a3e&_ss=r

The entire Mindwing philosophy was very, very intuitive to her, but this book helped her put together where the whole thing was going. 

On 11/14/2020 at 1:18 AM, PeterPan said:

I'm just talking out loud here right now. I don't know if there's a chemical that would help with that, or if it's just the overall picture of his issues. We were realizing today he does the same thing with eating. He eats a little, fills acceptably full (to the okay level, not actually full) and then RUNS off. So then he's hungry again in 20-30 minutes, because he's not actually sitting and finishing his meal! 

And that's not so different from reading, when you think about it. He has the technical ability to read material, but he doesn't have the maturity to tell himself to do it. That's how it comes across. And I'd feel really dumb if it's just woo need some med. But we talked meds till we were blue in the face, and with his level of aggression most ADHD meds are off off the table. 

What I'm trying to do on his mental health is get him through the next few months with working through more of the Interoception materials and see if that bumps his self awareness up that he can self advocate and get us more language about what's going on. I finally got a referral to a different children's hospital that has a psych clinic that could help us by tele. So there's kind of that hurdle, are we ready for that, would that help. I don't know. Those are big steps, sigh. 

I think this all sounds promising, and it does sound like it might be at least partly an ADHD thing or some kind of holding pattern he's in due to age/maturation.

I realize you've looked into meds via the genetic stuff. Do you think the new clinic might open up some additional options for meds? It might not even be possible right now, but I have heard of some kids who actually do in patient stays for all meds adjustments (and that's for autism and is fairly local to me). Whether that sounds like a reasonable or appealing option to you or not, I thought it might help you to know that's an option should you need it later.

On 11/14/2020 at 4:22 PM, PeterPan said:

This may explain why he does so well with worksheets! They'll have a section to read at the top and then questions for him to process. He does quite well with this. And when we read together, we stop to process, ask questions, relate it to other things we know. Again this works for him.

Do you do short stories with him, or only novels? 

When my son started working through the various levels of thinking in the Mindwing materials, he had to use short works for new stuff. I wonder if you could find one-page stories or fairly short stories that are at various reading/thinking levels. It could help if attention is a problem as well. 

I know one of the levels of Mosdos has one page stories for each new idea they introduce. I think it's the Coral level. Their teacher guides also offer background information for all stories. If there is a story on rainforest animals, there are activities or things the teacher can do to set the context with the materials in the teacher guide.

Anyway, I wonder if you can find some really short materials that will allow you to move forward just a bit in the way that the worksheets have been successful. 

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BK can read at an adult level, it's just slow going. She hit a wall with math where she was never really able to make the jump to algebra, but reading continued to progress, in spurts and bounds, and often followed emotional maturation as much as actual reading skill. 

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On 11/15/2020 at 10:47 PM, Rosie_0801 said:

most of her lack of understanding looks like a lack of general knowledge on the surface, yet her general knowledge seems to surpass her classmates

That makes a lot of sense!

 

On 11/16/2020 at 10:38 AM, Shellydon said:

Does Learning Ally have the books on audio? 

Yes I found the landmarks there! Not all but enough.

On 11/16/2020 at 6:54 PM, BlsdMama said:

The bigger piece of this puzzle, in my VERY limited experience, is working memory. 

Oh that’s interesting. Therapro has a webinar on WM I’m planning to watch tonight. They’ll record and post it later as well.

On 11/16/2020 at 7:00 PM, BlsdMama said:

But I think my boys grew by leaps in high school

That’s a really good point!!

9 hours ago, kbutton said:

When my son started working through the various levels of thinking in the Mindwing materials, he had to use short works for new stuff. I

Good point! And yes everything is on the table with him. I don’t think it’s quite time to do big guns on mental health because he’s growing so much. I’m hearing that things change during these years so the big guns are for when what we’re doing is really not working. 
 

I picked up some bedtime readers at Walmart I think I might be able to get to work. I have a feeling they step through narrative stages ridiculously. 

 

8 hours ago, dmmetler said:

reading continued to progress, in spurts and bounds, and often followed emotional maturation as much as actual reading skill.

Ahhh...

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It's a tricky one. Some people are pretty static on reading, and others make leaps and bounds at surprise moments, even through adulthood. Also, sometimes opportunities open up ability not previously accessible, and it's difficult to predict these. There was recently a program called The Write Offs where there were a group of people with severe reading problems. After four months (unfortunately the details weren't revealed, but all had 500 hours of professional language tuition), all of them had made at least 3 years' worth of progress with their reading, with the one who had the most severe reading disabilities making 5 years' worth of progress (from pre-school to the equivalent of a 9-year-old's reading level). The future doesn't come with guarantees.

I would advise against ruling out anything until he's a year past puberty unless there's a desperate space issue, simply because sometimes what becomes interesting and accessible changes (if so, it is usually for the better). At 18-20, it's worth looking at it again, but with more of an eye to "Is my child ever likely to care about this particular book/genre?" than "Can my child expect to read it any time soon?" For example, I'd suggest keeping all the cookbooks, even those written for adult level, because it sounds like these will continue to be of interest. I can't tell if the ones you've cited are (let alone will be) or not. In the end, I think you are more likely to be removing books based on the genre not being of interest than because of the pure difficulty of the books.

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My ds13, who has many of the same difficulties as your kiddo, made a huge leap between 11 and 13. At 11 we still buddy-read, paragraph by paragraph, and it was difficult and slow going. This year he has devoured the Hunger Games books, Percy Jackson, some random Sci-Fi...I'm kind of amazed. Assigned reading is still another story. lol. His ability to process nonfiction about WW2? Excellent, it's his special interest. His ability to process info from assigned readings? Eh. I find that if I ask him to complete a short outline while he reads it's much better. 

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