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Message modified by board administrator 8/6/2008, 9:26 am
Posted by Scott Crouse on 8/4/2008, 6:47 pm, in reply to "Re: Dyslexia
If it isn’t ADD, then the characteristics may suggest a generalized sequential processing disorder. This is the most common cause of learning disabilities and results in difficulty learning, memorizing, or organizing any type of detailed information. Such students tend to be “big picture” learners who simply get lost in the details. Difficulties in reading typically involve fluency and decoding much more than comprehension. In math the difficulty involves memorizing basic facts or formulas, while in writing the difficulty typically involves the mechanics (spelling, punctuation, letter reversals, etc.) and handwriting coordination. Children with ADD often have the same types of sequential processing difficulties as well as very limited tolerance for frustration and difficulty controlling emotional or behavioral reactions. You can find out more about sequential processing issues in my free on-line learning disabilities self advocacy manual posted on this web site. If it actually is a mild form of ADD, please don’t be too quick to eliminate the possibility of medication. When an effective medication is found it allows the child’s brain to function in a much more coordinated and efficient manner so that normal learning can take place. When this happens early enough, the long term negative impact of the ADD can be significantly minimized whereas if medication is only attempted much later as a “last resort” the negative and inefficient patterns often have become nearly impossible to correct or repair. In any case, the best place for both diagnostic and educational support (and free of charge) is the special education department of your local public school. They can determine once and for all if the reading, writing, or math difficulties are severe enough to entitle your son to special education intervention and can also provide you with a professional opinion about the ADD possibility. Simply contact them and request a comprehensive special education evaluation. They can even incorporate much of the assessment data you have already obtained. Good luck!