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Looking for a phonics program for a right brain learner

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I'm not sure if my ds8 is a right brain learner or not but he is struggling to learn to read. He rubs his eyes a lot, I did have them checked and his eye sight is fine. So I'm wondering if there is something else going on. Tomorrow I'm going to our local school to fill out some paperwork to have him tested. I've looked at Dianne Crafts phonics program, and borrowed it from a friend and he just didn't like it. Is there anything else at there geared toward right brain learners?

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What kind of vision testing was done? I took my dd to eye doctors for three years before I found one who did more than the eye chart. My dd had 20/20 vision, but she kept crashing into door frames, moving her head back and forth and side to side to read, and even covered one eye sometimes. The eye doctor who finally did something more tested her sweeping (ability to sweep the eyes from one spot to another) and tracking (ability to follow a moving object with eyes) and depth perception. My dd's eyes jerked back and forth when she tried to sweep her eyes and went through a weird jerking and stick/slip motion when she tried to track a moving object. Her depth perception was limited. She referred me to a vision therapy.


The vision therapy evaluation found that her eyes were focusing on different spots. Her left eye focused just a little to the right of where her right eye focused, causing double vision. The double vision caused her brain to periodically shut down the input from her right eye (because the double images were confusing).


She also took a very long time to shift her focus from near to far and back again.


Vision therapy was expensive, but it corrected her visual efficiency issues. The VT thought that my dd might also be dyslexic and suggested that I have her tested.


My dd has dyseidetic dyslexia (visual type). I had her tested and then posted her scores everywhere, hoping that somebody would be able to help me figure out what to do. I got excellent feedback and my dd is now reading at grade level. She is and always will be dyslexic, but she CAN read.


When you have your ds tested, be sure that they do the CTOPP in addition to the WISC-IV and the WJ-III or WIAT. It would be good to also have the GORT and the TOWRE done. The CTOPP is essential though. It will let you know if your ds has rapid naming issues (common issue with dyslexics).

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A common eye problem (with an inexpensive remediation) is that the brain "reads" as clearly from the peripheral vision as from the foveal or central vision. The brain then gets all this information confused. The notched card, developed by Hilsie Burkard in the UK, is a simple way to correct this problem. Cut out the top left corner of a business card or index card. Expose each spelling one at a time and have your son say the sound. When the whole word is exposed have him read the word. Studies out of MIT (and anecdotally with my daughter) indicate that intensive use of this for a week can correct the problem. This may not be your son's problem, but its a cheap option to try.


Are there other things that worry you?

I noticed you are using ABCD with him. What part of the lessons are not working for your son?


While ABCD is based on good research, its pedagogy, that is, the sequence and it activities, may not work for everyone. We had to slow down and teach each correspondence one at a time, rather than as a group, to get anywhere.


Anyway, if you share some of how things are actually going in the lessons, we might be able to suggest some programs or modifications that could help.




Reading Program Junkie

dd(10) dd(6) ds(5) ds(1)

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My youngest is really enjoying Dekodiphukan (decode if you can). It is free online and you can find it by Googling the title above. I have printed out the story, the blackline masters, and the various worksheets and placed them in a binder. Much of the materials are not necessary as they are for classroom use. Be advised that many of the downloads do no work as they are for older Mac computers, but there is enough to make it work


I watched the videos on this page and it was very helpful.




It uses pictures for the 44 phonetic sounds and teaches blending before introducing letters. My daughter is loving it.

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  • 2 years later...
This is in response to Caroline4Kids comment about Dekodiphukan. Caroline wrote her comment back in 2008 and this is 2012. The Dekodiphukan program which was free then, but involved a whole lot of downloading and printing out, is now available as a series of fourteen apps for the iPad. All fourteen apps are free, so what Caroline said before still applies.


iTunes app store search word for the apps is "dekodiphukan".


The Guide for the apps can be found at www.center.edu. The Guide is, of course, free as well.


Thanks for this update. I didn't end up using this for my ds who is now 11 but may use it for my ds7. I don't have an ipad so I guess that leaves me with a lot of downloading to do!

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