Saturday, September 27, 2008

From the Week of September 21

SCHOOLS BENEFITING GT/LD CHILDREN. The Toronto Globe and Mail this week ran an article about Arrowsmith School, founded in Toronto but now with affiliates across Canada and the US. The school caters to students like a bright little boy who "could play chess at age four and assemble things [from] IKEA" but couldn't identify letters at age six. The school uses neuroscience-based techniques to correct cognitive deficits, says the article. After attending Arrowsmith for awhile, most students return to the regular classroom. In spite of the high cost, $19,000 a year, some families move to be near an Arrowsmith school. Read the article.

STRUCTURE THERAPY FOR AD/HD. The New York Times reported on an eight-week summer camp for AD/HD kids that uses as strict, highly structured, behavioral model. The camp, according to the article, awards and subtracts points for behavior, and has found that a combination of meds and the behavioral treatment seems to get the best results and can help students return successfully to school in the fall. To read more, including behavior vignettes familiar to any parent or teacher of AD/HD children, go here.

LEARNING FROM MISTAKES? A study which may support the results obtained by the AD/HD behavior mod program mentioned in the previous item contends that younger children learn better from positive feedback but older children (12 and 13, as well as adults) are more strongly affected by negative feedback. The study also used fMRI to identify the areas of the brain affected by the different kinds of feedback. Read about the study.

AD/HD IN COLLEGE. NPR published three pieces recently dealing with AD/HD and college. One piece profiled a bright young woman with AD/HD, detailing her trials in K-12, the devices and techniques she used to compensate, and how she's doing in college. Another piece offered "10 Tips for College Students with Disabilities," and the third consists of tips for prepping kids with LDs for college.

CHECKING OUT COLLEGES. A tool that might help 2e students get a feel for particular campuses is online at www.unigo.com. The site, according to the New York Times, depends on student contributions in the form of text and video to provide a picture of schools. The advantages of the site: timeliness, the volume of information, and the visual information available. Check it out.

STAND-UP DESKS FOR FIDGETY STUDENTS. The Milwaukee Journal-Sentinel reports that elementary school teachers in Wisconsin and Minnesota are experimenting with stand-up workstations in the classroom so that students can move while working. According to the article, AD/HD kids are among the ones who benefit most from the desks. The article also mentions the use of "stability balls" as a replacement for chairs. Read the article.

WRIGHTSLAW. The September 23rd edition offered readers links to "top five" favorites from Special Ed Advocate on topics such as legal rights, education, LDs, and advocacy. Links included were to the:
  • Top 5 topics and articles from Special Ed Advocate in the past six months
  • The top 5 blog posts
  • Five free downloadable publications
  • Five free newsletters
Find the links.

THIS WEEK'S EDWEEK.ORG LIVE CHAT, on Friday the 26th, covered online learning and teaching. A transcript is available after the completion of the chat.

NCLD's LD TALK is conducted monthly as an Internet text-based discussion where participants submit questions in advance. September's topic was Universal Design for Learning, which focuses on ways to successfully present information and elicit
knowledge learned. Find the transcript here.

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