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  • Chapter 1: Definitions and CharacteristicsHistory of DefinitionsCharacteristicsCausesAssessmentInstructional methods needed

  • Just a few of many examples of people with LDEinstein (physicist), Edison (inventor), Washington (President), Wilson (President), Rockefeller (Vice President), Cruise (actor), Bell (inventor), Disney (corporate entertainer), Patton (General), Glover (actor), Von Braun (rocketry), Wright brother (inventors), Lennon (singer), Winkler (director), Ford (actor), Smith (actor, singer), Leno (comedian), Bush (President), Flagg (author), Stonewall Jackson (General) ...Listed in such work as Blessed With Dyslexia by Stacy Poulos and LDA-Ontario by Eve Nichols.

    To learn about living with a disability, click here.

  • History of DefinitionsBrain-InjuredMinimal Brain DysfunctionTask Force 1Learning DisabilitiesBeliefs:Orton (1937) failure of the left brain to process languageminimal brain dysfunctionMyklebust (1954) specific language disorderFrostig et al. (1964) cited perceptual and motor processesFernald (1943) and Gillingham (1960) written language issueSam Kirk (1963) called the general idea through this nonconsensus Learning Disabilities

  • LD in legislationEHA (PL94-142)Zero reject; FAPE; nondiscriminatory tests; LRE; due process; shared decision makingIncluded components: processing, language, academic, neurological, and exclusion clauseIDEA 1990Opens states to lawsuits; transition; OHI;Early intervention; improved dissemination IDEA 1997Discipline; IEP team changes; transition statement at age 14 and plan at age 16

  • 1975 definition of LDThe definition provided in US federal code (Section 300.7(c)(10) of 34 CFR Parts 300 and 303): (i) General. The term means a disorder in one or more of the basic psychological processes involved in understanding or in using language, spoken or written, that may manifest itself in an imperfect ability to listen, think, speak, read, write, spell, or to do mathematical calculations, including conditions such as perceptual disabilities, brain injury, minimal brain dysfunction, dyslexia, and developmental aphasia. (ii) Disorders not included. The term does not include learning problems that are primarily the result of visual, hearing, or motor disabilities, of mental retardation, of emotional disturbance, or of environmental, cultural, or economic disadvantage.

  • SLD Definition in IDEIA 2004The term specific learning disability means a disorder in one or more of the basic psychological processes involved in understanding or in using language, spoken or written, which disorder may manifest itself in the imperfect ability to listen, think, speak, read, write, spell, or do mathematical calculations. Witzel, 2009*

    Witzel, 2009

  • Definitions as Congress decidesMost legislation will center around failure to respond to instructionIDA (2003)Learning disabilities are due to cognitive deficits intrinsic to the individual and are often unexpected in relation to other cognitive abilities. Such disorders result in performance deficits in spite of quality instruction and predict anomalies in the development of adaptive functions having consequences across a lifespan.

  • Individuals with Disabilities Education Improvement Act of 2004Increased accountability to go with NCLBImproved monitoring of FAPE in the LREResolving conflicts and reduced litigationDiscipline to fit with positive behavioral interventionsReduces paperwork (no benchmarks and no reconvening)Improving parental involvementSupporting teachersMore local controlNew identification standardsEarly access to services and supportsImproved transitionSenator Judd Gregg (NH)

  • CharacteristicsReading Problems - Written Language Deficits - Math Underachievement -Nonverbal / Social Skills Deficits -Attention Problems and Hyperactivity - Behavioral Problems Physical / Motor DelaysProcessing and memory (Working Memory)

  • Your turnWhen have you felt learning disabled?

  • Age DifferencesPreschoolif we can identify children early we may be able to prevent a learning disability (Fletcher & Foorman, 1994)Elementary-School Child with LDreading issues become apparent; Matthew EffectAdolescents with LDachievement peaks; readiness and transition skillsAdult with LDfailures in school translate into unemployment and low employment

  • Gender DifferencesThere may be more females with LD than malesThen why are more boys identified?

    Male- physical control; writing mechanics; visual-motor connections; spelling errorsFemales- language; social problems; reading and math deficits

  • LD prevalence data5.6% of all peopleEstimates as high as 15%Over half (52%) of all students in special education are LDWidely varies across US (RI=63%; AL=26%)Placement (as of 1998)43.8% served in general education class39.3% in resource rooms18.8 in a separate class
  • Why the increased number of students with learning disabilities?Hallahan (1992) said that as the terms become more defined and identification become more specific we should expect to see growing numbersLyon (1999) said that LD is simply a sociological sponge mopping up after the errors in general education

  • Some Possible Causes of LD(no one cause has been identified)Brain Damage Some students with learning disabilities show definite signs of brain damage, which may be the cause of their learning problems. Some professionals believe that all children with LD suffer from some type of brain injury or dysfunction of the central nervous system. Biochemical Imbalance Some researchers believe that biochemical disturbances within a child's body are the cause of learning disabilities. Heredity Siblings and children of persons with reading disabilities have a slightly greater than normal likelihood of having reading problems. There is growing evidence that heredity may account for at least some of family linkage with dyslexia (Pennington, 1995).Environmental Factors Some educators believe that the majority of children labeled LD are the products of poor instruction, cultural differences and misunderstandings, or disproportionate expectations.

  • Effective Sped Teachers adapted from E. S. Gomisch (2011), BrightHubBe able to Articulate clear learning goals and objectives that are appropriate for the students to all stakeholdersKnow aspects of students background knowledge and characteristicsDemonstrate an understanding of the connections between content from one lesson and year to the next and transition and scaffold students appropriatelyCreate or select teaching methods, curricula, and resources that are appropriate for the studentsCreate and select assessment strategies that are appropriate for the studentsCreate a climate that promotes fairness and challenges students appropriately in a safe physical environmentTeach effectively and adjust to the needs of the studentsReflect on ones effectiveness in the classroom and other aspects (home and work)

  • SummaryWho founded the term learning disabled?Define the term learning disabilities?When can a low achiever not be learning disabled?What common characteristics are found in students with learning disabilities?

    Begin to look at the legal definitions and changes to what we call a learning disability.

  • How do we identify students

  • Significant DiscrepancyDisability was operationally defined using IQ and achievement testsSignificant Discrepancy calculationsIf a students IQ was 1, 1.5, or 2 standard deviations (15-30 points) above their achievement scores, then they may qualify for learning disability services Easy to calculate intra-individual needs Does not always address early academic failures Does not address legal definition of learning disabilities (processing) Misrepresentation Witzel, 2009*

    Witzel, 2009

  • No Child Left Behind Passed in 2002, NCLB is a piece of legislation designed to ensure that every child in America receives a proper education.NCLB holds states, school districts, schools and educators more accountable for the success of each student. NCLB requires states to have annual standardized tests given to at least 95% of all students. These tests are designed individually by each state to asses the adequate yearly progress of students in reading and math. These standardized tests must be given to students once a year in grades 3-8 and once in grades 10-12. NCLB has sanctions for schools that fail to meet adequate yearly progress standards including subgroups of students. After two years a failing school must provide paid busing and school choice to students and after 5 years of failing a school will be taken over completely.These sanctions are an attempt to give more choices for schooling to parents and students. One benefit of NCLB is the flexibility it gives to Title 1 spending. States and local education agencies have greater control over the use of federal education money. Finally, this act emphasizes the importance of literacy, especially for young children (Essex, 2006). Witzel, 2009*

    Witzel, 2009

  • Enter Response to Intervention Recently, in an urban elementary school teachers were asked what RtI meant.The results were mixed: most said response to intervention others said referral to intervention; reading tied to instructionex. Provides funding for special educatoin services?ex.No, not really- something with no child left behind? Witzel, 2009*

    Witzel, 2009

  • What is RtI (Hahn, 2008) Witzel, 2009*

    RTI is:RTI is NOT:A system of service deliveryA general education led effort implemented within General Education curricula and coordinated with all other services including special education, Title I, ELL, Reading Ed., Mathematics Ed.An alternative approach to the diagnosis of Learning Disability.An assessment system th


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