Archive for the ‘special education’ Category
Help Your Kids Improve Reading SkillsAs a parent you do have the power and ability to help your kids improve their reading skills. There are 4 easy to implement activities that each take just a few minutes a day to improve reading.
- Improve reading fluency in 5 minutes a day
- Improve spelling and learn the 8 ways we put letters together to make words
- Improve reading comprehension by playing a reading comprehension game
- Improve writing skills using specially designed graphic organizers
Improve Reading Skills: Reading Fluency TrainingReading fluency training is one of the easiest activities for parents to do with their kids to improve reading skills, and it only takes 5 minutes a few times a week to make a dramatic difference. Reading fluency training works to improve reading skills whether you have LD, dyslexia, are falling through the cracks, or are even gifted. You may not realize how important reading fluency and accuracy is, so here is an example on how it impacts your reading or your child’s reading. For example, you are reading a passage and read Susan can go to the store. You finish reading the selection and go to the questions and there is a question that asks, Why couldn't Susan go to the store? You think to yourself - What…I read Susan can go to the store. This question doesn't make any sense to me. BUT, what the sentence actually said was…Susan can't go to the store. Your eyes skipped the apostrophe t…The whole meaning was lost. That is one of the things that the Five Minutes to Better Reading Skills reading fluency training program corrects. With improved reading fluency, you don’t skip or omit words or parts of words. You don’t miss out on important pieces that are critical to reading comprehension. That is why it is important to have accurate reading for reading comprehension.
- Matching - objects and or sounds
- Size - small-medium-large; big-little; long-short; fat-thin
- Shape - circles, squares, and triangles
- Action - start - stop; slow-fast
- Position - top - bottom; under-over; forward-backward; up-down; inside-outside
- Relationships - same-different; parts-whole
- Configurations - patterns & sequencing
- Classifications - sorting objects into categories or arrange them into groups - by size, shape, or color
- Combination Concepts and Time - positions & shapes or positions and matching and time
- Listening & following directions (These skills are utilized in all of the above activities.)
- Build a positive relationship with at least one person on the IEP team, such as the classroom teacher, principal, or school psychologist, before the meeting. Such a relationship will help you feel more comfortable and know someone else hears your point of view.
- Plan ahead and put your thoughts down on paper, so you won't forget to mention what's important to you during the meeting. Complete the IEP Planning Form before the meeting. Know the purpose and format of the IEP meeting and who will be there ahead of time. That way you won't be surprised by the number of people around the table or the process being followed. IDEA 2004 contains new provisions that you should be aware of, including who can be excused from IEP meetings, and alternative ways to hold IEP team meetings.
- If you wish to share the results of a private evaluation with the IEP team, send copies of the reports to the team ahead of time so they can be familiar with the data before the meeting, rather than take valuable time during the meeting to review them. In some cases parents may feel that sharing this report (or particular aspects of the report) will not be of benefit to the IEP process; it's your choice whether to do so.
- Review current reports, last year's IEP (if applicable), and Parents' Rights and Responsibilities sent to you annually.
To be eligible for protections under Section 504, the child must have a physical or mental impairment. This impairment must substantially limit at least one major life activity. Major life activities include walking, seeing, hearing, speaking, breathing, learning, reading, writing, performing math calculations, working, caring for oneself, and performing manual tasks. The key is whether the child has an "impairment" that "substantially limits … one or more … major life activities."I usually suggest to parents that they not sign off on the plan at that meeting and say something to the effect, "we've talked about a lot of details today, it is a lot to absorb. I would like to go over them with my husband/spouse/ significant other or if you are both there - we need to go over them and review them." You may see some 'jaws' drop, but this will help you to be sure you are getting what you need. This does give you time to really look over the document and be sure it contains everything you need for your child. And, sometimes you realize you really need an additional service. Sometimes the additional service or accommodation is added without a problem because the school needs to get the IEP or 504 completed in a timely manner. To help you have a better understanding of your child's difficulties and the underlying causes of them, you will want to use a parent friendly informal LD dyslexia assessment tool. Hope this is helpful. Bonnie Terry, M. Ed., BCET