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Teaching Students with LD and ADHD

Is this a learning disability?


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Joined: Oct 09, 2007
Posts: 3
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Posted Oct 09, 2007 at 7:45:15 PM
Subject: Is this a learning disability?

I have an 11 yr old boy who is very bright. Middle school has exaggerated all of his issues though and I am not sure what to do about it. He has never been diagnosed ADD and I don't believe he is but he has HUGE issues with organizational skills, performing a list of tasks verbally (he gets distracted easily - send him up to clean his room and after about 10 minutes starts doing other things), does homework because we make him but then cannot find it to hand it in, never seems to have what he needs (pencils, books,etc) got horrible grades so far when I KNOW his potential is higher. I get tired of people saying that it is a boy thing and he will grow out of it - it is only getting worse and more exaggerated as the school years go on. Does he have problem?

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scifinut
Joined Jul 11, 2005
Posts: 550

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Posted:Oct 10, 2007 8:44:50 AM

Yes, he has a problem and should be evaluated by a professional.

scifinut mom to: ms 16, bp/adhd/anxiety/complex ld mr. 20, add/dyslexic I hear and I forget I see and I remember I do and I understand. -Anonymous

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always_wondering
Joined Jun 12, 2003
Posts: 94

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Posted:Oct 10, 2007 1:13:32 PM

Middle school is a big transition, heavy on organizational skills and light on teacher guidance and hand holding. So for a kid who is compensating, it is like building the tower of blocks. As the tower gets larger, it starts to wobble a bit, but it doesn't fall. Eventually, one to many blocks is placed on the tower and the tower crumbles. Everyone is surprised. Middle school is his last block.

Alot of bright or gifted kids with ADD, ADHD, or undiagnosed LD that can hold on and give the appearance of having no problems until something changes such as higher requirement for organziation or learning.

With that said, MS boys (and early HS boys if late bloomers) are notorious for going from an excellent student to a complete scatterbrain. So, you really have to look back on the past years and decide if he had symptoms before that you were just waiting for him to grow out of then.

For example, the hearlding symptom for my daughter was forgetfullness to extreme degrees. Teachers never saw it because she hid it well due to her intelligence and the fact she wanted everyone to think she had it together. It took several ADD assessments and psychoeducational testing to determine that it was ADD-Inattentive. However, I knew all along that something wasn't quite right.

So, what do the teachers say? You said you are tired of people saying he will grow out of it. Were these the teachers.

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Cheryl
Joined Oct 09, 2007
Posts: 3

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Posted:Oct 10, 2007 5:57:07 PM

He has always seemed smarter than his age. When he was in pre-school the teachers would see him fooling around while they were doing a lesson. They would assume that he wasn't paying attention and try to 'catch' him not paying attention. However, he would always know what they were talking about and went on to 'play'. Unfortunately it took the attention of kids around him. They would sit him in a chair just slightly higher than the kids on the floor to keep his attention. While in grammar school, his organizational skills were awful. So was his writing and his focus. It isn't that he CAN'T focus - but only focused when he wanted to. He RUSHES through everything! And he is a horrible speller. He can memorize the words when you make him study for a test but to write them - he forever wrote dose instead of does and lately I see him write papper instead of paper. If I stop him and ask him how to spell it and he thinks about it he gets it correct. I also notice that if I test him - he is not so good verbally and better written where he sees what he has written. Because he rushes through everything though, when he writes sentences he doesn't take the time to see what he wrote. EVERY teacher tells me how he comes up to their desk and tells them stories - something he learned or watched on tv - but seldom about the lesson. He is chatterbox - not liking to leave any silences. His older sister is very quiet and shy but has lately been telling him to shut up. When we talk to him about his issues - there are times when I get no response and then there are other times when he makes an attempt to try (like this week after he got a progress report with bad grades) but then will eventually not. I have been emailing his teachers and he doesn't hand in assignments. They don't know him well enough to know he isn't lying but - he does it and just can't find it in his own mess to hand it in. One teacher didn't believe me and went to his locker that day and he was able to put his hands on it. The first reply in her email was WOW! No wonder he cannot find anything. He had only been there a month and his locker is already disgusting. I have asked the Guidance counselor to schedule a meeting with her and his teachers. My worry is that if there is really something wrong with him and they don't think he needs help - what do I do then? I do have access to Child Study, etc but am not sure that what I am describing is severe enough a problem to be looked at seriously. I know that I cannot sustain this too much longer. I have been letting him go after school each day this week. Why? I don't think he needs extra help in his subjects but it was the only thing at my disposal to get him to focus on his subjects...and leave work early to pick him up each day. Today the math teacher asked him why he was there if he understands the work! I cannot win!

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scifinut
Joined Jul 11, 2005
Posts: 550

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Posted:Oct 10, 2007 8:16:37 PM

This may be something that needs to be addressed by an outside professional, not just school. An educational therapist, psychologist or psychiatrist.

scifinut mom to: ms 16, bp/adhd/anxiety/complex ld mr. 20, add/dyslexic I hear and I forget I see and I remember I do and I understand. -Anonymous

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Janis
Joined Jun 12, 2003
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Posted:Oct 11, 2007 2:49:49 PM

I agree that he definitely needs evaluation. As I read your posts, I see MANY symptoms of AD/HD. It has been apparent since he was very little. The school cannot diagnose it. I would find a neurologist who specializes in AD/HD. The comment, "he can do it when he wants to", is a common statement from teachers and parents of AD/HD kids. Actually, these kids cannot always control their attention or impulsivity. I will have to admit that my own son (now grown) likely had undiagnosed AD/HD, but we just did not know as much then. The things you mention are classic symptoms.

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