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Evolving research on attention deficit disorders is going beyond the typical hyperactive, disruptive child to find ways to better identify the quietly drifting student, as new screening tools and cognitive therapies seek to help both types of students.
Inside School Research Blog, Education Week
A pair of studies of the brain activity and hand movements of children with Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder may point to more accurate ways to measure the cause and severity of their problems.
Medical News Today
A person playing a first-person shooter video game like Halo or Unreal Tournament must make decisions quickly. That fast-paced decision-making, it turns out, boosts the player's visual skills but comes at a cost, according to new research: reducing the person's ability to inhibit impulsive behavior. This reduction in what is called "proactive executive control" appears to be yet another way that violent video games can increase aggressive behavior.
Kids who get bullied and snubbed by peers may be more likely to have problems in other parts of their lives, past studies have shown. And now researchers have found at least three factors in a child's behavior that can lead to social rejection.
Emerging research on the "neurodevelopmental paradox" of twice-exceptional students highlights the need for educators to take an earlier, more holistic approach to evaluating and teaching students with disabilities. Often, when people think of a gifted student with disabilities, they picture an autistic savant, like Dustin Hoffman's character in the movie "Rain Man," but in reality, "there are a lot of kids who are really struggling, and we totally miss them," said M. Layne Kalbfleisch, the principal investigator of the Krasnow Investigations of Developmental Learning and Behavior, or KIDLAB, at George Mason University, in Fairfax, Va.
The Wall Street Journal
A recent study of "atypical" antipsychotic drugs shows that the drugs pose a risk for cardiac failure. These drugs are approved for treating schizophrenia, bipolar disorder, and irritability associated with autism in children as young as 5. Researchers say they are widely prescribed for off-label treatment of dementia in nursing-home patients and attention deficit hyperactivity disorder, or ADHD, in children. An editorial accompanying the new study said the use of such drugs should be "reduced sharply" among children and elderly patients.
An alarming number of third-graders continue to read below their grade level despite Massachusetts leading the nation on standardized reading assessments, according to a new report.
Medication may be the most effective treatment for kids with ADHD but it's not a cure-all, a new Consumer Reports survey shows. Parents surveyed by the magazine reported using a variety of strategies to improve their kids' symptoms, such as hiring tutors, switching schools, modifying diets, and changing the way they spoke to their children. Consumer Reports interviewed 934 parents of children with ADHD, asking about a variety of topics, ranging from the impact of medications to the effect of complementary strategies, to which physicians provided the most help.
"A new University of Melbourne study suggests that up to 10 per cent of the population is affected by specific learning disabilities (SLDs). Disabilities include problems with math (dyscalculia), reading (dyslexia) and autism, translating to two or three pupils in every classroom."
Shots Blog, National Public Radio
Children taking stimulant drugs like Ritalin for ADHD aren't at greater risk of having a heart attack or other serious cardiovascular problems, according to new research published online Tuesday in the New England Journal of Medicine. But critics of the widespread use of prescription amphetamines to treat the symptoms of attention deficit-hyperactivity disorder 2.7 million children are taking the drugs say this latest study still doesn't give ADHD drugs a clean bill of health.
The New York Times
A gift for spatial reasoning — the kind that may inspire an imaginative child to dismantle a clock or the family refrigerator — may be a greater predictor of future creativity or innovation than math or verbal skills, particularly in math, science and related fields, according to a study published Monday in the journal Psychological Science.
While teacher mentoring has become nearly ubiquitous as an education reform, new research suggests state and district mentoring policies may leave gaps in support for special education teachers.
"The initial reaction of the pediatric anesthesia community was, 'This must be wrong, we've been giving anesthetics to kids for years and we don't see a big problem,'" says Mayo Clinic anesthesiologist Robert Wilder. He, too, was skeptical. But of the kids in Dr. Wilder's study who had had three or more operations with general anesthesia, 50 percent of them later developed a learning disability.
Children diagnosed with attention-deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD) have a much higher risk of developing a written language disorder, a new study indicates. To ADHD experts, the current observation does not come as a particular surprise. It has long been known that children with ADHD stand a much higher chance of developing some form of learning disability especially a reading disability, which accounts for about 80 percent of all learning disabilities affecting ADHD patients.
Proponents claim neurofeedback can help alleviate a broad range of problems, including not only ADHD but anxiety, depression, autism and brain injuries. Yet the costly, time-consuming therapy has long been dogged by skeptics who call it a placebo at best, a rip-off at worst. The National Institute of Mental Health (NIMH) is sponsoring the first government-funded, peer-reviewed study investigating whether the offbeat therapy makes sense for some of the millions of American children and adults coping with ADHD and similar disorders.
The New York Times
"Many people consider dyslexia simply a reading problem in which children mix up letters and misconstrue written words. But increasingly scientists have come to believe that the reading difficulties of dyslexia are part of a larger puzzle: a problem with how the brain processes speech and puts together words from smaller units of sound."
If your child acts like he or she has attention-deficit/hyperactivity disorder (ADHD), you may want to give them some fish oil supplement or DHA/EPA supplements. A new study in Nutrition suggests that high intake of omega-3 fatty acids, particularly DHA helps improve the condition of ADHD.
Dyslexia may be rooted in a problem the brain has in teasing out distinct sounds from the incoming garble, researchers say.
New York Daily News
Students at new small high schools opened under Mayor Bloomberg have made real gains, but that progress has come at the expense of students in the large high schools, where the spillover has caused a drop in graduation rates for some of the city's neediest children, a new report shows. The damage to the remaining large schools was inflicted mostly because the new small schools set up to replace the large failing ones did not take as many students as the mammoth ones that closed, the report says. The small schools also weren't set up to serve special education students and English-language learners.
The Los Angeles Times (CA)
A closer look at a small new study that suggests that, for children diagnosed with attention deficit and hyperactivity disorder, the twice-daily practice of transcendental meditation in school improves attention and reduces stress, anxiety and impulsive behavior.