Friday, December 8, 2017

Dyslexia, OEs, Labels, Events, More

BAD NEWS FOR DYSLEXICS. American Public Media has found that “across the country, public schools are denying children proper treatment and often failing to identify them with dyslexia in the first place.” Says Radio WAMU, which aired a story on the situation: "The APM findings also show that the way schools handle recognizing and educating students with dyslexia could have implications for how all children are taught to read. We look at how one special needs population affects early childhood education and literacy rates across the board." Listen here, and be sure to check the comments on the broadcast's page. You'll see some familiar situations. 😣

BAD NEWS FOR SMART PEOPLE? Scientific American notes a couple of seemingly contradictory findings. While people of high intelligence tend to be healthy and successful, a survey of Mensa members revealed that they were more likely to suffer from mood disorders, anxiety, ADHD, and autism. The researchers evidently explain this by suggesting a "hyper brain, hyper body" hypothesis -- your basic overexcitabilities. Read more.

MORE ON LABELS. In our last blog we referred to a piece on how the "gifted" label can be important for those who fit it, even though it might have disadvantages. Now a piece in Education Week considers labels of disability -- the advantage (or necessity) in obtaining services, but also the the downside of perception by others. The authors write, "We wonder how those children are waiting to be seen as whole young people and not as labeled with an anchor that prevents their ability to soar." Read more.

2e EVENT. The Iowa Talented and Gifted Association is holding a two-day workshop on twice-exceptionality next April 13-14 in Cedar Falls. The intended audience consists of educators and administrators. The goal: to "assist district teams in developing plans to address [2e] challenges and to learn instructional approaches that emphasize rigor.... Each team attending will leave with a district plan draft for serving twice exceptional students as well as strategies designed to provide appropriate classroom instruction." Find out more

UNDERSTOOD EVENTS. The organization Understood has frequent Facebook chats and other interactive events on topics of interest to those who raise and educate twice-exceptional children. Coming up: accommodations for reading and writing; dyscalculia; and technology for reading. Some chats are in Spanish. Find out more and check back often.
RISPERDAL is being increasingly prescribed to children for aggression or irritability. If a health professional has mentioned that drug to you, check out a new article at the site of the Child Mind Institute.
SMART KIDS WITH LEARNING DISABILITIES is launching a campaign to profile kids who pursue achievement in spite of LDs. Not only can you read the stories of others, but the organization says, "These are your children’s stories. Please share them with our Smart Kids community..." Read more.
GIFTED AND DISTRACTIBLE. The newest edition of Julie Skolnick's newsletter is out, featuring a blog post by Julie on loneliness plus pointers to articles and news of what she is doing in the 2e community. Find the newsletter.
TiLT TALKS TO SENG. The latest podcast from TiLT Parenting is a conversation with Michael Postma, executive director of the organization Supporting Emotional Needs of the Gifted. The topic: the plight of gifted and 2e kids. Find out more.
POLICY AND LAW
  • Education Dive, in its annual awards of recognition, has named the Every Student Succeeds Act as the "Policy of the Year." If you're looking for a primer on what this law is, go to Education Dive
  • U.S. K-12 spending is still below what it was before the recession that began in 2008-9, according to Education Week, which refers to a report from the Center on Budget and Policy Priorities, a progressive think-tank. From the article: "Experts in general say states' school spending is being squeezed by pension and Medicaid costs, declines in capital, sales and commodity tax revenue, and a series of tax cuts in a handful of especially conservative states." Read more. This topic is also covered at The 74
RESEARCH, SCIENCE.
  • Medscape reports this: "Cognitive-behavioral sleep interventions provide the greatest benefits to adolescents with higher levels of anxiety and depressive symptoms, whereas other adolescents with sleep problems respond less well." Find the item
  • Science Daily reports on the effects of lack of sleep in teens -- mood disorders and even addition. Read the study write-up
  • Also from Science Daily: "People with major depressive disorder have alterations in the activity and connectivity of brain systems underlying reward and memory, according to a new study. The findings provide clues as to which regions of the brain could be at the root of symptoms, such as reduced happiness and pleasure, in depression." Find the study write-up.

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