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Parenting a Child with LD or ADHD

Trying to help


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Joined: Sep 28, 2009
Posts: 3
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Posted Sep 28, 2009 at 5:47:15 PM
Subject: Trying to help

My name is Evan Murphy and I was diagnosed as both Dyslexic and Dysgraphic when I was in the 9th Grade. After graduating high school with really no assistance, I went on to take classes in Drafting and tool design at Lake Michigan community college. I was able to secure a job designing die cast tooling which I did for a few years until the economy slowed down and I had to come up with a new plan. I decided to go back to school, this time for product design. I am currently attending Kendall college of art and design as a senior in the industrial design program. My thesis project is is for a product to aid in the learning process of learning disabled students. As part of this product development process I need to collect a great deal of information about the intended users. I have created a survey to help me collect information which can be accessed by copying and pasting the following address into your browser.

http://www.surveymonkey.com/s.aspx?sm=yzqMfuZO9QZUICFQ0UyFMQ_3d_3d

I have read a number of posts here on the forums but if any one would like to respond to this I will be on to see what people have to say. I am also willing to answer questions about my own experience as a learning disabled person in an unfriendly education system. Stay strong and thanks for your support.

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saoz
Joined Sep 24, 2009
Posts: 9

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Posted:Sep 28, 2009 10:41:50 PM

Hi Evan. I am student taking a learning disabilities course and also doing research on this subject. Would it be possible for you to discuss some of your experiences regarding pre-diagnosis, the diagnostic process and post-diagnosis or your dyslexia.Thankyou.

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EvanM
Joined Sep 28, 2009
Posts: 3

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Posted:Sep 29, 2009 5:34:04 PM

As far as pre-diagnosis experiences there was always a sense of knowing that I was in some way different. I was able to see quite plainly that my mastery of written language was lacking. Reading never seemed to be a problem since I was visually memorizing my vocabulary. Even to this day My oral vocabulary is much larger than my written vocabulary due to my difficulty in under standing letter sounds. The diagnostic process was pretty straight forward involving a few hours of testing and then a post testing meeting the following week. What I learned at that meeting was life changing to say the least. The difference was more in my perception rather than in practice. The testing gave me understanding of my situation and reduced my feelings of isolation. As far as school services I was placed in a study hall with other learning disabled students, all of whom where lower functioning than myself. This made things difficult though because I was used to having all of my credit hours available to take classes like chemistry and physics, then out of nowhere i have this mandatory study hall making class selection and scheduling much more difficult. The study hall itself was supposed to be a service to help me complete my class work but it did little to change my situation. The only classes that I received any actual help in where classes where the teacher was sympathetic to my situation and made accommodations for me. Most teachers however had no interest in accommodating a learning disabled student at the high school level. I would say that the most lasting difficulty for me is emotional, due to the lack of support in the school environment. I can't even imagine how bad things could have gotten without support from my parents.

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saoz
Joined Sep 24, 2009
Posts: 9

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Posted:Sep 29, 2009 5:49:52 PM

Thank you. What about your elementary years? How did you cope and did any of the teachers there provide any help?

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EvanM
Joined Sep 28, 2009
Posts: 3

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Posted:Sep 30, 2009 5:02:15 PM

During my elementary years I knew something was wrong. I asked my parents to come observe me in class in the first grade. I was tested for the first time shortly after my parents came into the school and found nothing to be wrong. Oddly the gentleman who administered the first test, was the high school english teacher who would ultimately identify me as disabled 9 yrs. later. The school gave my parents a copy of the test results to keep, but said that the results showed i was not disabled so there was nothing to be done. Which is exactly what was done until my freshmen year of high school when my english teacher asked me if I was receiving services. We set up a conference with my parents, to which my mother brought those original test results. Almost immediately after looking at those results my teachers voice became quiet. He told us to go to an outside source to get tested because there was indeed something wrong and the school was not going to do something on there own. He said that once I was diagnosed by a professional outside the system, there was no way for them to deny that a problem existed.
As far as classroom experiences in elementary school. I mostly just did poorly and received endless teacher commentary about how lazy i was. Not once did a single teacher open their ears to my claims, instead they simply assumed that I was lazy and stubborn. In my experience this is a common problem with educators, even with proof in the form of testing many still don't believe these types of disabilities are real. Many seem to believe that students are trying to get away with doing less work. Especially in cases like my own where a student is in many ways more intelligent than their classmates but still perform poorly due to some unseen element. The assumption is that the unseen element in question is simply laziness or a poor work ethic. This is of course a foolish assumption that i believe finds its basis in the apathy of the educators themselves. I have found this educator apathy to be common at all levels of education from primary through college. The disabled need to be vocal about there needs and must refuse to accept poor performance on behalf of the school system.

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saoz
Joined Sep 24, 2009
Posts: 9

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Posted:Sep 30, 2009 10:37:49 PM

In what ways did your LD affect your school work? What were your strengths in school? How did you find ways in coping with these difficulties? Did your LD affect your interaction with your peers? How did this affect the family? With the results of your testing turning up negative, then in high school it was positive; how did that affect you and your family? Was there outside of school tutoring or testing? Thank you.

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