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Showing posts from 2018

What is Visual Tracking and How Can it Improve Reading?

Many students have difficulties reading text from left to right and from line to line. Although some outgrow this difficulty, other's need extra help to develop this skill.

What Exactly is Tracking?
Tracking is the ability to move one's eyes smoothly across the page and from one line of text to another.  Problems can arise such as eye fatigue, word omissions, reversals, losing one's place while reading and most importantly these difficulties can negatively impact reading comprehension. 
Tracking can be improved by strengthening eye muscles as well as getting the eyes and brain to work together. There are three eye movements that need to be developed: 
Fixations: ability to hold one's eyes steady without moving off a target.Pursuits: ability to follow a moving target with one's eyes.Saccades: ability to jump to new targets that randomly disappear and reappear in a different location.10  Free Tracking Exercises:
Use colored overlays to read books to assist with the track…

How to Get Money Back for Tutoring Costs

Many parents despair when they learn that tutoring, educational therapy, or other types of learning assistance is not covered by insurance. Even when there is a diagnosis, getting the needed academic support and cognitive remediation can be an expensive prospect. To make matters worse, more and more families are acquiring support outside of the schools, so the “academic bar” of classroom expectations is continually elevated. As a result, with growing competition for desirable college acceptances, for those who cannot afford this outside support, their children are often placed at a profound disadvantage.

You Often Get What You Pay For:
Like many things, the more finances you can allocate for professional help, the better the services. Large tutoring franchises do not have the funds to hire highly trained professionals, and if they do have some talented employees, they rarely offer one to one assistance. What’s more, they tend to place kids onto boring workbooks, and they offer somethi…

How Can I Improve My Reading Speed and Comprehension?

There are all sorts of companies that are trying to sell “speed reading” programs and a “quick comprehension fix.” I often evaluate these products, and I continually find them, too good to be true. What I do know, as a seasoned reading specialist, and educational therapist, is there is not a single solution that serves every struggling reader. So why is this and what can you do?

Why Does the Solution to Improved Reading Differ Across Individuals?
The secret to improving both reading speed and comprehension depends on each individual’s learning profile and preferences. What are the cognitive weaknesses that are causing the reading difficulties? These deficits need to be remediated through individualized support and accommodated with assistive technology tools. In addition, what are the cognitive strengths of the learner? Tapping into these abilities can help struggling readers develop compensatory strategies or workarounds. Finally, looking at individual preferences can also help. This …

Free Dyslexia Screener: Should Testing Be Pursued?

From dyslexic jokes to the many documented strengths recently touted in research and the media, having the learning disability, dyslexia has become a “cool” badge that many now proudly display. Because of this recent change of heart, people are continually disclosing to me that they are a self-diagnosed dyslexic that slipped through the system.  Additionally, parents are now openly embracing this label, and with a formal diagnosis in hand, students can receive “reasonable accommodations” that can help them to actualize their true potential. If you've wondered if you or your child may have dyslexia, you may also wonder what you should do first.
The Steps to Determine a Diagnosis of Dyslexia and Acquiring Accommodations The first step: Use my dyslexia screener. This quick, free, 20-question evaluation can be administered and scored by a parent/guardian, teacher, or taken by the individual who may have dyslexia.  This will help to determine whether there is enough symptomology to warra…

Dysphonetic and Dyseidetic Dyslexia: What is the Difference?

Meeting the needs of a student with dyslexia can be a complicated process because most require an individualized approach.Although two students might struggle with common symptoms such as word reversals or spelling problems, the underlying causes can be remarkably different. This is true because there are a variety of cognitive-based deficits that can cause a diagnosis of dyslexia. The two most common, core difficulties lie within the processing of either auditory or visual information.
Dysphonetic Dyslexia: Those with dysphonetic dyslexia experience difficulties connecting sounds to letter symbols, sounding out words, and spelling words phonetically. Although hearing is not impaired, the problem lies in the way the brain processes this auditory information. For example, a student with dysphonetic dyslexia may struggle to discriminate the difference between the short vowel sounds.
Dyseidetic Dyslexia: In contrast, those with dyseidetic dyslexia do not have difficulties with processing aud…