I Have a Struggling Student. What Are My Child's Options?
When a child struggles with learning, they also struggle to feel good about themselves. If you are the parent of a child who struggles in school... even though they may be bright, motivated and anxious to learn... you know the frustration, overwhelming discouragement and powerfully negative impact on self-esteem this can have on your struggling child (and you).
If you're concerned about a child you love who is struggling with learning, if you've spent countless hours proding, pushing and helping to get homework done with little improvement, then read on, because all that can change - for life!
Struggling kids can learn to use their full potential and find great success. Learning can be easier and more enjoyable for a lifetime.There is a permanent solution!
20% of the population, or one in five students have some kind of learning disability. Research indicates that for the vast majority of those with learning disabilities (70% or more) even the most talented teachers, experienced tutors, prestigious private schools or well established after school learning centers do not have viable solutions in effectively dealing with these learning disabled students.
Public schools, private schools, tutors and the majority of alternative learning centers are not equipped to effectively help learning disabled students "learn to learn." They typically treat only the symptoms of learning disabilities.
Better teaching will not necessarily produce better learning.
The world is filled with gifted, dedicated teachers, tutors and other well qualified educators. Each one of us can point to a teacher who had significant impact on our lives in more ways than just "teaching us." Even the most talented, prepared and committed teachers or tutors cannot solve a child's learning problem(s) using ineffective traditional methods, curriculum and systems.
Remember our poor golfer practicing his bad swing? He'll get better and better at doing it wrong.
There may be a muscle problem causing poor perception due to poor eye tracking. It could be an inability to rapidly recognize and assemble the letters forming longer words. It could be any of a group of very different learning problems.
The point is, you cannot correct the problem by just treating the symptom! The student must be taught to perceive and process information correctly, and then the adverse symptoms will go away.
Learning only happens when a person receives information and is able to process it into usable material for accurate future responses.
Practice Doesn't Necessarily Make Perfect
If you are a concerned parent who has a child in resource, tutoring, a traditional after school learning center or using medication to help them succeed in school... know this... these options only treat symptoms of learning disabilities, add to your child's frustration and just plain can't help him overcome learning difficulties. The underlying problems causing the poor reading, math and spelling must be identified and corrected first.
- Has learning required more effort than others seem to use?
- Has learning been difficult for 2 years or more?
- Has tutoring or special help been ineffective over the long term?
- Has success been inconsistent?
- Is performance below average or below grade level in some areas?
- Is forgetfulness a problem?
- Are spoken instructions or lectures difficult to follow?
- Are sports or tasks that require coordination difficult?
- Is there a high level of frustration when learning new material?
- When reading, are words or lines skipped?
If you answered Yes to three or more of these questions, it is very likely that mild to moderate learning disabilities are present. These problems will not be effectively addressed or solved in the classroom, with tutors or by an after- school learning center like Sylvan or Oxford. This is true even in special learning disability programs like "resource" that are specifically geared to work with learning disabled students.
Okay, it seems obvious that learning disabilities may be present. Which learning alternatives actually work and which ones are guaranteed to frustrate your child, drain your wallet and potentially make the problem worse?
What are my options regarding my child's educational future?
1. Public School Resource Programs COMPARE MY OPTIONS HERE
"Resource" is the generally accepted option offered by public schools to deal with students that appear to have learning and associated behavior challenges. Some of the most dedicated and talented teachers in the Public Schools teach these challenging, bright, but often frustrated kids.
Schools are over crowded, and devote their limited resources to teaching. The training of teachers focuses on "teaching techniques" rather than dealing with "why" some students have trouble learning.
In schools, those students with serious learning problems are normally placed in special programs, like resource, where less is expected of them. They are taught how to live with their problem, but little or nothing is done to help them correct it. If the child is a slow reader, they will give them more time on tests or even read the tests to them.
This helps a struggling child get by... but not get better.
Schools offer even less for students with moderate to severe learning problems. These students often fall between the cracks and are just told to try harder.
Here are some troubling facts:
On average, a student in a special program like resource will improve 1/3 of a grade level per year. That means that for every three years in school, a student will improve by one grade level.
Only 30% of students placed in resource will "graduate" from resource. Most special programs "adjust down" to the perceived level of the student. If a child makes little or no progress in resource, it can be devastating for an already fragile self-concept or confidence.
Even though some of the most dedicated and talented teachers in the public school systems offer themselves as "resource" teachers... better teachers or teaching does not necessarily produce better results. Communication only takes place in the mind of the listener... not the mouth of the speaker.
Learning takes place in the mind of the student. It is not somehow embedded in the messages, skill or sincerity of the teacher. Even good teachers have little effect on students who do not know how to learn. Find out more on how we learn.
2. Private Tutoring
Private Tutoring is another approach often used to help struggling students get by. Tutoring has the potential to be effective for about 30% of the students that have learning disabilities. Tutoring generally helps, but only temporarily. While the tutoring goes on and on, it does little or nothing to correct the basic problem. The students always need more tutoring as they are confronted with each new class.
Tutoring can be very expensive, especially if a student is struggling in more that one subject. It is most effective with a student that needs exposure to material they haven't been taught yet. It is not a viable long-term solution and can lead to additional frustration for your child, further loss of self-confidence and will drain your wallet.
Tutoring offers no permanent solution. It may help a struggling child get by... but not get better.
3. After School Learning Centers
After school learning centers like Sylvan, Oxford, Kumon, Huntington and a myriad of others are generally not a productive alternative for children or adults with learning disabilities. In fact, these centers will often turn away or refuse admission to students that have symptoms of ADD, ADHD or other learning disabilities.
After school learning centers often "guarantee" a one grade level improvement for every 60 hours of instruction. For 100 hours of instruction, the cost would be approximately $4,500.00. The instruction is rarely one-on-one and focuses almost exclusively on finding better ways to live with the problem. The costs are also ongoing
year after year with no lasting results.
Like tutoring, after school learning centers offer no permanent solutions and treat only the symptoms of learning disabilities.
They may help a struggling student get by... but not get better.
4. Learning Technics and Physio-Neuro Therapy
Learning Technics changes the person's basic ability to learn.
That is, changing how the brain perceives and processes all information including that which affects attitude, thinking, physical movement and LEARNING.
This is done by bringing the student's inefficient perceptual and processing patterns to a conscious level and re-programming that part of the brain's neural network which controls them.
Physio-Neuro Therapy is an approach that Learning Technics pioneered. These neurological learning techniques are similar to the physical therapy used on stroke victims. It involves a series of physical and mental exercises that strengthen developmentally weak areas of the brain. These exercises are used until the weak circuits causing the learning disability are strengthened.
When this happens, performance improves and learning problems diminish.
How we're different
Most learning techniques, especially tutoring, or approaches taken by "learning centers" tries to improve performance by dealing primarily with the symptoms or expressions of the problems. If the student's problem is poor reading or math, the teachers or tutors focus on drilling and practicing reading or math.
For the struggling student, this usually only produces short-term gain and the next year more tutoring is needed. The Learning Technics approach goes beyond short term solutions by focusing on developing the student's underlying skills and
Learning Technics does not teach math, reading, spelling or social studies. Physio-Neuro Therapy helps grow neuro tissue which changes the way the brain learns,making school (and life) easier and more enjoyable.
Through a simple assessment, your child's basic perceptual and processing weaknesses are discovered. Those basic perceptual and processing weaknesses, which are the underlying causes of their learning problems can then be
Learning problems get in the way of success throughout life. Don't let that happen to your child.
When these learning disabilities are identified and corrected, the need for continual remedial help ends...FOREVER.
Learning Technics' success rate in identifying and permanently solving learning disabilities is over 93%!
The Learning Technics Learning Disability Program has been effective for:
- ADD (Attention Deficit Disorder)
- Poor reading or comprehension
- Difficulty remembering
- Difficulty concentrating / short attention span
- Difficulty following directions or sequencing information
- Inability to complete tasks
- Poor self-image
- Directional Problems
- Hearing Discrimination Problems
We see improved grades, better attitudes, more initiative, improved focus, but more is at stake. Much more. One struggling student told his mother, "Just face it Mom! I'm not smart and nothing will change that. Don't you get it?!" The truth is this boy's brain just works differently and once his ability to learn is improved, his whole life will be changed for the better.
The Physio-Neuro Therapy program runs approximately 26 weeks and the affects last a lifetime. There is a one-time charge (considerably less than the yearly 100 hours of instruction at a learning center or with a professional tutor) and permanent results are unconditionally guaranteed!
And, you don't have to keep coming back year after year.
Learning Technics will GUARANTEE IN WRITING, improvement in your child's ability to learn ...with the greatest improvement occurring in the areas of most difficulty. Give Learning Technics a call to set up an evaluation. After the evaluation you will KNOW exactly what areas need to be improved to solve your child's learning problems permanently!
Click here for a simple evaluation you can do at home to see if neuro-processing weaknesses may be the cause of your child's learning trouble.
Charles Eberhard School Superintendent
Charles praises Learning Technics' Intercept Program
" When I left the district in 1993, almost all the students who had been through Project Intercept were finding success in the regular classroom and the number of special education students had been reduced significantly."
During the late 1980's I was superintendent of Fredonia-Moccasin Unified School District in northern Arizona. For some time I had been concerned about the relative lack of success of Special Education programs in the public schools. It seemed that children who were classified as having special needs were put into a system from which they seldom left, remaining special education students through elementary, middle school and high school. Kindergarten and First Grade teachers knew early on that certain students were having difficulty with learning processes. I felt that if these children could be identified at an early age and their specific learning problems addressed early on, that perhaps the prolonged special education label could be eliminated.
One of my elementary teachers, Mary Johnson, introduced me to Learning Technics, a program John Heath had been developing that seemed to address the concerns I had. With the approval of the district board of education, we began a training process with teachers and parents that we called Project Intercept. We identified students who were not yet classified as Special Ed and began the program. When I left the district in 1993, almost all the students who had been through Project Intercept were finding success in the regular classroom and the number of special education students had been reduced significantly. I felt that the key to the success of the program was a close working relationship between parents and teachers in providing an intense one-on-one training of students to confront the developmental processes needed to overcome specific learning disabilities.In the 1990's I was superintendent of Laramie County School District #2 in southeastern Wyoming. I was able to introduce Project Intercept into that district. One significant aspect of the program there was the incident of one teacher using the skills she had been taught by Learning Technics on an 8th grade student who was in Special Education. She found that the techniques worked with older students as well. However, this student was highly motivated, as he didn't want to be classified as Special Ed when he went to high school. He made amazing progress, and entered the 9th grade as a regular education student.
I sincerely believe that by identifying children with learning disabilities at an early age, and intensely working with them on an individual basis, that developmental processes can be channeled so that the disabilities can be overcome and self-esteem enhanced.
The Poor Golf Swing
For a poor reader with a neurological deficiency to practice reading is like a poor golfer practicing his bad swing. He will get better and better at doing it wrong. That is what tutoring and tutors do to poor readers if the underlying problem causing a student to read poorly is not identified first. The point is a tutor cannot correct a problem by just treating the symptom.