tagline
WETA

Search LD OnLine

Get our free newsletter

advertisement

Forums
Parenting a Child with LD or ADHD

Mel Levine Seminar Summary

Go to page:   |<   <   1   2   >   >|


Author Message
Joined: Nov 03, 2005
Posts: 69138
Other Topics
Posted Jan 30, 2003 at 11:14:06 AM
Subject: Mel Levine Seminar Summary

I went to an all day seminar by Dr. Mel Levine yesterday entitled “The Ingredients of Learning and Academic Output” and thought I would summarize some of the key points I left with. I have read his books so a lot of what he said I was familiar with.

* He feels that Spelling problems are a language issue and not a visual issue. He sees the visual component as the spell checker in spelling. A child with intact visual perceptual skills will see spelling errors once they’ve written the word.
* He feels that CAPD is really a language processing issue and doesn’t believe in CAPD existence.
*The severity of a dysfunction is not always directly related to the level of impact. He feels that the impact of the dysfunction is what is important.
*He feels that schools should be responsible for learning but that parents should be responsible for autoimmunization.
*He feels that attention problems in a child usually co-exist with other problems, dysfunctions. He feels that dealing with attention with medication is not dealing with all the issues. The medication may help for a few months but then the problems reappear.
*He feels when a child is assessed that they should also be “demystified”. The expert should talk to the child about his strengths and areas of weaknesses. Description of student’s strengths should be concrete. When talking about weaknesses the child should be told the number of dysfunctions he has; “there are 3 areas that are a problem for you.”
He feels it is better if the person who does the demystification is the expert and not the parent.

Back to top Profile Email
Anonymous
Joined Nov 27, 2014
Posts: 69138

Other Topics
Posted:Jan 30, 2003 12:28:07 PM

THANK YOU Helen...I have not read his books -- I have 'skimmed' one and read a couple of chapters but did not like his approach at the time (Educational Care) -- however, based on your summary I should perhaps take another look...I still don't see him as a 'guru' but we have more in common than I thought at the time.

I have one question, tho -- what is 'autoimmunization' referring to?

Thanks for posting this!

Back to top Profile Email
Anonymous
Joined Nov 27, 2014
Posts: 69138

Other Topics
Posted:Jan 30, 2003 1:03:33 PM

It should be automatization; the spell checker changed it. Automatization is making recall automatic such as math facts.

I've been a fan of Mel Levine for years so it was great to hear him live.

Helen

Back to top Profile Email
Anonymous
Joined Nov 27, 2014
Posts: 69138

Other Topics
Posted:Jan 30, 2003 7:25:23 PM

If we could count on more parents to help with the hours of practice that are required to acquire automatization, then we could get so much more "from" these students. I often lament the number of hours I have to sit with a child and do certain things over and over again, just to get it automatic. I spend time with my upper graders working toward automaticity of decoding multi-syllable words. If I would send a list of 25 or so words per week home that include patterns I have taught and IF I could guarantee that my students would practice on these words nightly, then I could deal with teaching different concepts during my RSP time and test weekly for mastery. Instead, I must be the one, or my aide, to spend the time on the repetition, so I find it very difficult to "get to" all the areas I must get to to cover all IEP goals for my K-6 caseload. This is very typical in CA to have one RSP per elementary school. I could do so much more, but I can scarcely get most of the parents of my students to stand by and enforce 5 minutes per day of spelling homework.

Back to top Profile Email
Anonymous
Joined Nov 27, 2014
Posts: 69138

Other Topics
Posted:Jan 30, 2003 8:40:40 PM

I'm amazed that so many parents don't work with their kids. But in defense of 'some' parents, let me share my story.

When my dd was in Child Find, the teacher put together a nice packet of 'things' to work on at home. I admit, I was one of those parents who didn't do it. Here's where the problem was. It was not mandatory - it was optional. It was not explained WHY and what results to expect. It was not intuitive to me and not laid out to where I could implement on my own. In otherwords, I had to be very creative and it just didn't work for me. I'm way too tired after a full days work to come home and have to be creative to make up my own program.

If you are working on decoding multi-syllable words and working toward automaticity, the MTC program worksheets are awesome. Very mindless for parent to implement(my husband can even do it). In other words, if our resource teacher sent home something that said 'try to practice these word patterns at home'- I may or may not be too excited about doing it, because I may or may not really know how to practice these at home and view it as optional, and how much work would I have to make up on my own?( Most parents don't even know what it means to 'decode' a word.) But if she gave me some training (like they did with MTC) and sent a word pattern list home at beginning of week, with a guide that made it mindless for me and with mandatory instructions to do x number hours and had a progress report to turn in.. I would have no problem doing it- esp if it was explained to me the type of progress to expect from doing it.

Back to top Profile Email
Anonymous
Joined Nov 27, 2014
Posts: 69138

Other Topics
Posted:Jan 30, 2003 9:05:04 PM

I actually have his book, "A Mind at a Time" right here in my growing stack of things to read.

I am facinated by the idea that he thinks APD and language pd's are the same thing and that APD doesn't exist. I am pretty involved in the APD world, so it surprises me to hear him say that. But I can see it to a certain extent. My child's memory and integration issues carry over to areas besides just the auditory, so perhaps it is just cognitive but shows up in auditory testing. There is so much yet to be learned about the brain.

Janis

Back to top Profile Email
Anonymous
Joined Nov 27, 2014
Posts: 69138

Other Topics
Posted:Jan 30, 2003 10:08:52 PM

Anitya,
You sound like a wonderful teacher! I WISH my son's reading intervention teacher would send home a list or something for me to help him at home because I'm left creating these things on my own (which is probably okay because his reading intervention teacher doesn't even know what Ortin Gillingham is!!! And the material she uses is something I've never heard of -- not specifically for LD kids). I'm in So. Cal. and the schools here only have one RSP teacher.

As I said, I'd be thrilled to have a reading teacher send me extra stuff once a week to help with developing automaticity.

Have you tried getting parents to help? Maybe start out with a short list and a recommended practice time (like 10 minutes a day) and see how it goes. You might not be able to get every parent to help, but there might be at least one thrilled to have some direction.

Back to top Profile Email
Anonymous
Joined Nov 27, 2014
Posts: 69138

Other Topics
Posted:Jan 30, 2003 10:37:05 PM

My son's integration issues also are much broader than auditory. It affects the whole way he processes information. He is able to do things for awhile but then the effort to hold it together wears him out. In some ways, CAPD does not capture the broad nature of this disability. It seems to me though that a language LD does not either.

One audiologist told me she thought my son had a general information processing problem rather than an auditory processing problem. Therapy has really helped but I suspect there will always residual effects.

I also have noticed in reading the CAPD boards that many of these kids seem to have other disorders as well. Makes you wonder how often CAPD exist by itself.

Beth

Back to top Profile Email
Anonymous
Joined Nov 27, 2014
Posts: 69138

Other Topics
Posted:Jan 30, 2003 10:50:50 PM

You know, I was thinking that Anna was one of those pure APD kids, but I'm really not sure about that since memory is probably always more than just auditory when words are involved. You know, they often say that APD kids do okay with music. That would tend to support the language processing theory, I think. In addition, those APD tests used words. So how CAN you separate language from auditory processing? Just thinking out loud, really.

Beth, I'd appreciate it if you'd look at my post under teaching reading as you are familiar with some of the things I mention.(I remember what you told me about Audiblox). Thanks.

Janis

Back to top Profile Email
Anonymous
Joined Nov 27, 2014
Posts: 69138

Other Topics
Posted:Jan 30, 2003 10:52:12 PM

Anitya,

As a suggestion you could do a night-time training(I know more time from family for all} and show the parents how through modeling they could help their child do the exercises with their child.

Being in an upper income area our elem. RSP had parents who came in and worked with children one-on-one. I did it once a week but I didn't want to work with my own child.

Helen

Back to top Profile Email
Anonymous
Joined Nov 27, 2014
Posts: 69138

Other Topics
Posted:Jan 31, 2003 9:23:37 AM

Anitya,

I had the opposite problem- my son had a resource teacher that did not give us anything to work on at home, hence I created the speed drills et.c. to keep him going. I also requested to get decodable readers that we read every night.

But I totally agree that for a child like my son, the amount of time that is needed for repetition to get things automatic cannot really be granted at school.

However, in my experience it works better if the parental involvement needs to be assigned by a teacher. For my son any reading activity was so hard, that unless it was coming from school he really resisted doing it; when it comes as a homework, not general assignment read 20 min. each eve., but specific- read 3 times this page of words, he does it without much fuss.

Back to top Profile Email
Anonymous
Joined Nov 27, 2014
Posts: 69138

Other Topics
Posted:Jan 31, 2003 11:08:16 AM

Many of these kids struggle in school so much, the LAST thing they want to do at home is any more schoolwork. There is anger and resentment just waiting to be spilled at SOMEONE

Yes, I understand that no kid enjoys homework but, trust me, I have two non-LD sons who display typical minor homework apathy. The LD boy's resistance is of a different type and magnitude. As parents we sometimes feel we are sacrificing our relationship with our kids for a spelling list!!!!!

Like the above poster, my 5th grader responds better to a specific assignment -those 'read 20 min' every night just dont get done because WE have to intervene too much-time the 20 minutes, help them choose reading material-we become the focal point of their resentment and the family as a whole suffers. But my son will do worksheets or reports without even a reminder!

Back to top Profile Email
Anonymous
Joined Nov 27, 2014
Posts: 69138

Other Topics
Posted:Jan 31, 2003 11:58:42 AM

I agree, we need structured programs that require that the parent and teacher work together at very specific goals with with a specific set of instructions.

I would love to see schools implement a program that requires the parent sign on and that the teachers and parents truely work as a team sharing feedback and helping each other gain understanding of the child's needs with both the parent and teacher seen as equally important contributors.

Some parents really don't have a clue what it takes to remediate a child. They just don't see it as their job.

Back to top Profile Email
Anonymous
Joined Nov 27, 2014
Posts: 69138

Other Topics
Posted:Jan 31, 2003 12:02:37 PM

As I stated, we have extreme difficulty with a large number of parents just getting short and simple (I can vouch for that) homework assignments done. Many of our parents in this neighborhood don't do the minumum and years of nagging doesn't make it change. We just give up and do the best we can with what we have. Yes, a few parents do help.

Back to top Profile Email
Anonymous
Joined Nov 27, 2014
Posts: 69138

Other Topics
Posted:Jan 31, 2003 12:04:23 PM

It is not lack of knowledge, it is lack of willingness. When they don't even sit and administer a practice spelling test of 10-12 words on Thursday night, etc. this issue is NOT whether or not they understand, it is their parenting skills that are not what they should be. They don't come to parent meetings, either. On back to school night and open house they don't even bother to come see RSP.

Back to top Profile Email
Anonymous
Joined Nov 27, 2014
Posts: 69138

Other Topics
Posted:Jan 31, 2003 12:11:04 PM

I don't know if this helps, but my son's vision therapist who does balancing, sequencing and alot of OT type exercises says that she sees some kids who have speech problems improve with this type of therapy.

Back to top Profile Email
Anonymous
Joined Nov 27, 2014
Posts: 69138

Other Topics
Posted:Jan 31, 2003 12:35:07 PM

My son has language difficulties. The vision therapist we'll be starting with in two weeks does similar "OT-like" VT. It will be interesting to see if this helps with his langauage, visual processing and reading.

Back to top Profile Email
Anonymous
Joined Nov 27, 2014
Posts: 69138

Other Topics
Posted:Jan 31, 2003 1:21:04 PM

Laura,

My older son does not have language difficulties but my 4 year old is very quiet and sometimes I wonder about him.

He takes gymnastics and I think it is so funny that after gymnastics he is talking up a storm. My friend noticed this as well because she often drives him home. She said, "He just won't stop talking the whole way home."

Back to top Profile Email
Anonymous
Joined Nov 27, 2014
Posts: 69138

Other Topics
Posted:Jan 31, 2003 1:32:37 PM

Makes me wonder about SID--do you have the book The Out of Sync Child? I recall something similar being recalled in there.

Beth

Back to top Profile Email
Anonymous
Joined Nov 27, 2014
Posts: 69138

Other Topics
Posted:Jan 31, 2003 1:55:05 PM

I have that book somewhere! I don't recall. I honestly just wonder if it has to do with automaticity of underlying sensory and cognitive functions. Speech is a fairly complex activity requiring multiple areas of the brain to work together. Mouth muscles, sequencing, auditory functions, etc. So yes, it makes sense that if you addressed sensory integration you could help speech.


A little off topic but when I worked with spinal chord patients I can remember one guy who had damage at a very high level on his spinal chord. It was a miracle that he was alive. His breathing was affected. He could breathe but he had to think about it. It was not automatic. He was on a respirator most of the day but he was taken off for about an hour a day so that he could breathe on his own. It was exhausting for him but he built up his ability and it became slightly more automatic as he practiced breathing on his own. He could do it for longer periods of time and he eventually just had the respirator at night. Imagine having such a simple activity not be automatic. I think that is kind of what is like for people with LD. Simple things we take for granted are just not automatic and they need to be taught and made automatic.

Back to top Profile Email
Anonymous
Joined Nov 27, 2014
Posts: 69138

Other Topics
Posted:Jan 31, 2003 2:31:59 PM

Anitya,

I spend a great deal of time helping my son and checking homework, gathering some interesting stuff for him to use in reports, he must do the report, but I will try and provide materials of interest.

I have also had him tutored for the previous two years and it was expensive. I don't mind doing everything possible for my son. O.K. I am fortunate I have a great husband, both of us have good educations and our family is moderate income.

Not all families are like ours I know many people who work two jobs. There are many single parents who have several kids and other problems. Maybe they just don't have extra time or for that matter the education themselves to help.

Back to top Profile Email

Go to page:   |<   <   1   2   >   >|