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Learning Outside the Box

July 11, 2014 in Special Education Articles by Jess

As children and parents negotiate their way through the final weeks of summer and approach the beginning of a new school year, they experienced the inevitable and vast array of thoughts and feelings about the upcoming challenges they will face.  Many students feel a predominance of excitement as they anticipate who their new teachers will be, look forward to seeing old friends, making new ones, and sharing the experiences they have had since June.  As a person, I hope that all children feel, on balance, more excitement than concern at the prospect of a fresh opportunity; however, as a Special Educator with thirteen years of school based experience, I know that many – if not most – children with special needs face every school year with worry and trepidation. Read the rest of this entry →

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The Five Keys to Unlocking a Successful School Year

July 11, 2014 in Special Education Articles by Jess

Executive functioning skills are essential to succeed in life. Certain executive functioning skills, such as time management and organization, help individuals in their jobs, daily chores, and day to day responsibilities. Students with a variety of learning challenges, such as ADHD, learning disabilities, or autism spectrum disorders, may have deficits in such executive functioning skills, which can, in turn, adversely affect the school experience. Although these deficits may seem insurmountable at times, there are ways to tackle them to achieve success.

As a new school year is beginning, high school faculty and staff, parents, and students themselves, are searching for systems to put in place to develop such executive functioning skills and to maximize the classroom learning experience. To help, here are New Frontiers in Learning’s Five Keys to a Successful School Year: Read the rest of this entry →

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ADHD Behavior Management – Teach Your Kids How

July 9, 2014 in Special Education Articles by Jess

This is a common refrain at our house – sound familiar?

“Son, you look like you’ve lost focus. What do you need to do to get back on task?”

Wouldn’t it be great if your son’s behavior management was his responsibility, not yours?

Recently, my sons answer made me laugh with pride, “I need a motivator!” he said with a huge smile on his face. He quickly created an incentive for himself (something to do with ice-cream I think) and finished his homework in record speed.

Motivation is a powerful tool for behavior management. We know that the ADHD brain needs to be motivated in order to maintain focus. It is powerful when our kids begin to understand the concept and create tools to help themselves. Read the rest of this entry →

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How Do You Get Organized with ADHD

April 9, 2014 in Special Education Articles by Jess

Adults with Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder (ADHD) often struggle with prioritization and organization. Items get lost, bills go unpaid, and projects go unfinished. Creative, smart, and loving individuals suffer from chronic feelings of “not being good enough”. Relationships flounder and lives can spin out of control. People with ADHD can tell you that they simply feel overwhelmed and exhausted.

Fortunately, it is possible to manage ADHD symptoms. There are many extremely effective strategies for coping with difficulties in these areas. In fact, you can become organized and an effective prioritizer if you learn to utilize some of the techniques below.  The first step is to be aware of your weaknesses and take action to address them. The realistic goal is not to become perfect, but to make daily life less stressful. The way you prioritize should depend on your individual needs and problems. Below, we’ll take a look at useful tips that can get you started: Read the rest of this entry →

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My Child has a Medical Diagnosis why doesn’t he Qualify for an IEP?

March 19, 2014 in Special Education Advisor Blog by Doug Goldberg

I often hear from parents, I have just gotten a medical diagnosis for my child and have set up my first IEP meeting to qualify them to receive services.  That medical diagnosis could be ADHD, a learning disorder, a mood disorder, an anxiety disorder, pervasive developmental disorder or a whole host of others.  These are typically the same parents that are blown away when the School District tells them they don’t qualify. Read the rest of this entry →

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Attention-Deficit/Hyperactivity Disorder (AD/HD) Fact Sheet

October 6, 2013 in The National Dissemination Center for Children with Disabilities by Doug Goldberg

Mario’s Story

Mario is 10 years old. When he was 7, his family learned he had AD/HD. At the time, he was driving everyone crazy. At school, he couldn’t stay in his seat or keep quiet. At home, he didn’t finish his homework or his chores. He did scary things, too, like climb out of his window onto the roof and run across the street without looking.

Things are much better now. Mario was tested by a trained professional to find out what he does well and what gives him trouble. His parents and teachers came up with ways to help him at school. Mario has trouble sitting still, so now he does some of his work standing up. He’s also the student who tidies up the room and washes the chalkboard. His teachers break down his lessons into several parts. Then they have him do each part one at a time. This helps Mario keep his attention on his work.

At home, things have changed, too. Now his parents know why he’s so active. They are careful to praise him when he does something well. They even have a reward program to encourage good behavior. He earns “good job points” that they post on a wall chart. After earning 10 points he gets to choose something fun he’d like to do. Having a child with AD/HD is still a challenge, but things are looking better. Read the rest of this entry →

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Do your Kids Homework — With Them

January 17, 2013 in Special Education Articles by Jess

Sometimes, kids come home with assignments that can become a family affair. Maybe it’s a logic puzzle of the week, or a fun assignment for public speaking. Or maybe it’s having a lively discussion about a book your child is reading for Lit. You can increase your child’s commitment to his/her education by showing an interest, without actually doing the work for her! Read the rest of this entry →

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3 Things to Teach Your Kids Now About Their ADHD

November 18, 2012 in Special Education Articles by Jess

What should you say to your kids about their ADHD?  When should you start talking about it?  The answer is simple to parenting ADHD kids: teach what they can understand, and do it now. Education and awareness are important tools. Knowledge is power, and it can help your kids be successful. There are three critical conversations that you can have at any age (with some minor adjustments for young ADDers).

1. Understand your Brain

It’s important, even at young ages, that all children understand what their brains need to do their job well. Since ADD brains work differently in some ways, it’s all the more important information for our kids to understand that: Read the rest of this entry →

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The Most Essential Factor in Parenting Students with ADD and ADHD?

October 18, 2012 in Special Education Articles by Jess

Some people would answer something such as “the ability to stay calm,” or “providing the right kind of structure,” or “keeping yourself healthy and well-rested.” Read the rest of this entry →

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About Neuropsychological Evaluations

September 5, 2012 in Special Education Articles by Jess

What is a Neuropsychological Evaluation?

A neuropsychological evaluation is comprehensive battery of tests that provides a detailed picture of a person’s aptitude, achievement, and social and emotional status as compared to others at the same stage of development.  Only a trained neuropsychologist administers such assessments.  The evaluation involves a clinical history and interview, completion of standardized checklists, completion of paper and pencil tasks, hands-on activities, and computer-based tasks. Read the rest of this entry →

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