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269 Maple Ave Oradell NJ 07649 US

Offering Diagnostic Educational Evaluations

My Blog


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Dyslexia Law

Posted on 2 April, 2014 at 21:56 Comments comments (163)
FINALLY...the state of New Jersey passed a Dyslexia bill that now mandates all k-2 teachers to receive professional development hours on Dyslexia.  That means, your child's teachers must learn about Dyslexia.  They must understand that this is a language based reading disability and they must be able to recognize the characteristics of Dyslexia.  They must learn that Dyslexia does not mean a student reverses letters.  Dyslexia is language is the way a person processes the sounds they hear and how they attach those sounds to symbols.  Without proper treatment and instruction a child with Dyslexia cannot learn to read.  If schools wait until third or fourth is too late! Although this law was passed last year, many districts are slowly adhering to it.  The law has two parts...not only is every teacher required to learn about Dyslexia; but the second part states that all students who demonstrate any warning signs of Dyslexia...must be evaluated by the first half of second grade.  That IS the law.  Any teachers or doctors who tell you to wait...are not adhering to this law.  Do not Learn2Love*Love2Learn today!  Dyslexia will not go away on its own.  It must be accurately diagnosed and can be treated...the earlier, the better. 

Help for Homework Hell

Posted on 4 December, 2013 at 22:24 Comments comments (167)
Most parents of grade school children spend their after school hours hustling from one activity to the next.  Whether it be gymnastics, soccer practice, CCD, Brownies, or playdates, parents and children have very hectic weekday schedules.  Somewhere during that time parents must also find time for homework.  For many children this can be done independently while parents are cooking dinner or even in the car waiting for another sibling...however, for many children this cannot be done independently.  Children with learning disabilities or attention deficits cannot complete homework without support and accommodations.  For these families, homework is agonizing.  It can destroy parent child relationships.  It can spoil family time.  It can be so punitive that any benefit is outweighed by the negative effect it has on these children and ultimately their families.  If your child cannot read independently, they cannot complete reading assignments independently.  If they cannot maintain their attention without verbal prompting, they cannot work independently.  Unfortunately, homework is not going anywhere.  With all the pressure placed on teachers regarding curriculum and deadlines and benchmarks, homework is necessary in order to maintain the fast pace of intruction present in today's classrooms.  To spend money on tutors or learning centers just to help your child complete his daily homework is ridiculously expensive.  However, you still need help.  Paying a student in 7th through 10th grade to assist your child with their daily homework may actually save your relationship and your child's self esteem.  Not only will your child have a set time to complete their homework, but you can remove yourself from the craziness.  This will cost less than ten dollars an hour and will be money well spent. 

When Students Advocate for Themselves

Posted on 29 August, 2013 at 18:58 Comments comments (57)
When will students start advocating for themselves?  That is the million dollar question.  Some students begin telling teachers what they need as early as elementary school.  Others still have a hard time advocating for themselves in high school and beyond.  When this happens, depends not only on the child...but also on the disability.  It seems as though students with a physical disability such as a hearing loss, begin advocating for themselves earliest.  Perhaps the child does not have any shame or embarrassment regarding the physical impairment.  It is not his or her fault and it is obvious...there's nothing to hide.  Teachers are usually very caring and concerned about these students.  They want to make sure all accommodations are in place for this child and are glad to help.  Next, comes the child with a true learning disability, such as dyslexia.  This child is also treated with compassion and the teacher is eager to make modifications and assist this child in the classroom.  Many teachers are not well versed in these areas and actually look to the student to learn the best way to teach them.  These students know how they learn and are not embarrassed or afraid to reach out to the teacher for help. the child with ADHD.  These students take the longest to reach out for help.  The nature of their disability is both the cause and the effect.  First of all, they can't explain what they need or how they learn best, because this often changes depending on which ADHD symptoms are most pronounced on a given day.  ADHD students may want to reach out for help, but they forget....or procrastinate doing so...or get distracted...or become too anxious...or restless...or can't organize their thoughts to say what they need.  Teachers are less sympathetic and caring when it comes to ADHD.  Most teachers do not understand the 'disability' and feel it is isn't real.  They can see how an FM system is necessary for a child with a hearing loss...but they cannot see how a study guide is necessary for a child with ADHD.  This attitude is felt by the child with ADHD year after year until they, too, start to feel it isn't justified.  So not only do they have a disability, they have to defend their disability.  Therefore, students with ADHD cannot really advocate for themselves until they are comfortable enough with their disability and can actually teach their teachers what it feels like to walk in their shoes.  ONE teacher can make that difference for a child with ADHD.  Once ONE teacher accepts ADHD as a true disability and treats it as such...that child will experience what it feels like to learn on a level playing field as his classmates.  Once that happens, the child with ADHD will become his own advocate.  When they learn on a level playing field...they will be successful...and success tastes so is worth advocating for----

Back To School IEP Reminders

Posted on 29 August, 2013 at 18:25 Comments comments (152)
Even though all of your child's teachers are responsible for reading and understanding your child's not take any chances.  Prior to the new school year send an email to all of your child's teachers (including spanish, gym, art, music, etc.) to introduce yourself, your child, and your child's IEP.  Many parents feel they do not want to bother the teacher or appear to be a pushy parent.  When you have a child with a disabling condition, such as ADHD or a hearing loss or any other learning disability, it is your job to advocate on their behalf...until they are able to advocate for themselves.  Sending an email to the teachers will help them prepare for the challenges that may lie ahead.  Most teachers appreciate the information because even if they did read the IEP, the information you provide is more useful.  Provide emails, phone numbers, and any strategies that benefit your child.  Be honest, but keep it short.  Teachers are extremely busy this time of year.  If you write a two page email, only the first paragraph will be read.  After you write it, send it to yourself first.  Open it up and read it.  Decide if that is what you wanted to say...if not, make changes.  Then, hit SEND. 

20% off learning evaluations in AUGUST

Posted on 30 July, 2013 at 12:06 Comments comments (53)
Schedule a learning evaluation for child by August 1 and save 20%.  Call 201 370-2248 to make an appointment today! An accurate assessment is the first step to finding the best treatment for your child's learning weaknesses. 

When Teachers Have Favorites...

Posted on 20 July, 2013 at 6:42 Comments comments (90)
When teachers pick favorite one benefits.  Actually, research shows that ALL of the students suffer when a teacher picks a favorite student.  This type of inappropriate teacher behavior is a form of bullying. In my opinion, teachers who choose a favorite student and then treat that student the definition of "a bully" themselves.   This creates anxiety in students as well.  At first, the 'favorite' child might like the special attention.  But since the attention is not warranted for something that is real, even the 'favorite child' knows that his time there may be short lived.  The favorite child may be ignored or teased by other kids.  Even first graders know when the teacher has a favorite.  They all want to be the favorite and will do everything they can to be chosen.  However, they quickly give up.  They understand that the teacher is randomly choosing students and it is not based on merit, behavior, or work ethic.  Imagine that...before their seventh birthday kids realize that life is not fair.  Some teachers pick favorites and there is nothing they can do about it.   Other children may even dread being selected as the favorite child.   When teachers are FAIR, children feel SAFE.  They try harder, because their efforts are recognized and applauded.  Before we can address bullying in kids..we must first address bullying in teachers.  

Why won't my child go for EXTRA HELP?

Posted on 1 July, 2013 at 16:27 Comments comments (236)
If I had a dollar for every meeting that I sat in, where the teacher said, "but he doesn't come for extra help"; then I would be rich!  Telling a student with ADHD to go for extra help, is like telling a deaf person to hear.  The steps involved in going for extra help...are all weaknesses of the ADHD student.  Executive Functioning....planning...short-term memory...organizing their schedule to attend...knowing when extra help is offered...knowing what to do if the teacher isn't in the room when they get there....knowing what to do if the teacher is talking to another adult...knowing what to say to the teacher when he arrives at the room for extra help...knowing what to bring...making sure the work is completed so the teacher can offer feedback...what if you get distracted and are now a few minutes late....what if you forget to go and now the teacher is mad...what if you forgot to tell your parent you were going...what if a friend sees you there...what if you become so worried about going that it consumes your thoughts all day long...what if? what if? what if?  In my opinion....the task of "going for extra help" should be an IEP goal...and throughout the year teachers should work on objectives related to helping that student achieve that goal.  I know it sounds silly, but some students actually have to be to go get Extra Help. These objectives can be broken down so each week the student become more independent and closer to going for exra help on his own.  Perhaps, the teacher can give him a pass with the day, time, and room number.  Then if someone asks him where he is going, he can simply show the pass.  Worry #1-done.  Next, the teacher should understand how challenging the task of going for extra help is for the student.  The teacher should never scold the student for work not done or if the student cannot explain why they are there or if they arrive late. The teacher should welcome the students and reward him in some way for coming.  I know this sounds excessive and the extra help should be the reward, but this is why students have IEPs because simple tasks (like going for Extra Help) are not so simple for some students.  They require direct instruction in these areas.  Yes...they need to be taught HOW to go for Extra Help.  So the next time a teacher of an ADHD student says "I don't understand why he doesn't come for extra help,"  I dare you to reply "and I don't understand why the deaf child can't hear."   

Study Guides Level the Playing Field for Students with ADHD and dyslexia

Posted on 19 May, 2013 at 21:51 Comments comments (63)
Students who have difficulty in school benefit from completed study guides for tests and quizzes.  Whether the student has dyslexia or ADHD, a completed study guide can help.  For the dyslexic student, taking accurate notes is a challenge.  First of all, they have to retain the auditory information long enough to write it down.  Then they have to write it fast enough to ensure they don't miss additional information from the teacher.  We know that dyslexic students have difficulty writing quickly.  We also know that students with ADHD have difficulty maintaining their attention for long periods of time on topics that do not interest them.  Without the ability to focus, some information gets lost.  The ADHD student is usually disorganized.  His notes are not legible and therefore cannot be used to study for a test.  Does that mean that students with ADHD and dyslexia deserve to fail.  Absolutely not!  Without completed study guides, these students are at a disadvantage.  Providing completed study guides for these students levels the playing field.  Completed study guides provide them the opportunity to be successful.  However, study guides are often given to students the day before the test.  Study guides are often fill-in-the-blank worksheets.  This is problematic.  If the study guide is given to the student the night before the test...and they have to fill in the blanks...and the answers are not corrected...the study guide does not serve its purpose.  These students will spend hours to complete the worksheets and never know if their answers are correct.  If that is what they use to study, they may be studying incorrect answers.  Some teachers say that they do not want to give a 'completed' study guide because it isn't fair.  Well, having dyslexia and/or ADHD isn't fair either.  It is not up to the teacher to decide if a completed study guide is fair.  If the IEP Team or the 504 Team decides that it is an appropriate accommodation for the student, then it must be provided to the student.  The teacher that thinks a completed study guide isn't fair, should try to grade tests...without an answer the middle of a crowded, noisy restaurant...with a patch over one eye.

Frustrated with general ed teachers

Posted on 18 April, 2013 at 12:16 Comments comments (59)
As more and more students with learning disabilities are placed in general education classes, general education teachers need to learn the difference between accommodations and modifications.  This is especially true for middle school and high school students.  In core subjects, there is often an in-class special education teacher present.  Not only does this benefit the students, but also the general education teacher....and it is not only because there is an extra teacher.  The special education teacher actually teaches the general education teacher (when they are willing to learn) about the types of modifications that students benefit from.  In those core classes, such as Language Arts and Math, the general education teachers are become well versed in making appropriate modifications.  Tests are modified, alternate assignments are provided, and the students have access to accurate notes.  The problem, however, is with general education teachers who teach classes that never offer in-class support.  These teachers have not learned appropriate modifications.  They assume that moving a child's seat to the front of the room is a modification.  That is an accommodation!  They assume that using an FM system for a hearing impaired students is a modification.  That is an accommodation as well!  These are the Health teachers; the computer teachers, the Spanish teachers., etc.  So it is not surprising that students with learning disabilities struggle the most in these classes.  This does not make any sense to me.  If a student can have a modified test in Math class...then why can't she have a modified test in Health class.  I do not feel that these classes need a special education teacher present.  In my opinion, these general education teachers need to be willing to modify.  They must adhere to all of the modifications outlined in a child's IEP...not just the accommodations.  They must make two tests.  They must give student's access to accurate notes. They should refrain from 'pop quizzes'.  They must offer alternate means for assessing a student's knowledge.  They must take the time to ensure that the answers on the student's study guides are accurate.  If not...districts are going to have to place special education teachers in these classes and that is not cost effective, nor is it necessary.  In my opinion, some training in this area is imperative.   If special education students are in the general education classroom, the general education teacher must understand the child's disability and what modifications need to be made.  It cannot be up to the parent nor the student to beg for these modifications...because that can often have an adverse effect on the relationship between the teacher and the student.  Call Learn2Love*Love2Learn to teach general education teachers the difference between modifications and accommodations!

Spring Special 10% off Evaluations

Posted on 7 April, 2013 at 10:40 Comments comments (52)
Spring is here and another school year will soon be coming to an end.  This is the perfect time to schedule an educational evaluation for your child.  Each school year you meet with your child's teacher approximatetly two times for fifteen minutes.  You can probably remember every word the teacher said to describe your child from every teacher conference you ever had.  Why is this?  It's because this is information about YOUR child.  There is nothing more important to you.  If you hang on to every word during a fifteen minute teacher conference just imagine how you will feel after your child has a comprehensive evaluation and the detailed results are explained to you at great length.  Sometimes this can take more than two hours.  Imagine that...talking about YOUR child's learning strengths and weaknesses for two hours.  And that is included in the price of your evaluation.  Neurologists and Psychiatrists charge more than $3,000 for this type of evaluation and the results are mailed to you or you pay another fee to speak to the doctor for 20 minutes.  Right now you can receive 10% off of the original price of $1250.  This includes 2 3-hour testing sessions, report, recommendations, and a parent conference to thoroughly interpret these results.  You will have this information to ensure that you can use the summer months to accurately prepare YOUR child for the coming school year by focusing on YOUR child's specific weaknesses.   Schedule your appointment today!