Guidelines for Parents and Teachers
The initial step in intervention for children not doing well in school is to determine the cause.
The school psychologist may be the best source of information, and the either the school or the parents can request an evaluation to determine the causes of a child’s learning problems.
The following general causes and suggested interventions are based on the gross distinctions suggested by Rabinovitch: 1. deficits in specific capabilities, 2. lack of developmental readiness, 3. lack of emotional freedom to learn, and 4. lack of motivation. 1. Deficits in specific capabilities. Children who have specific learning disabilities, attention deficits or cognitive deficits often present a confusing mixture of abilities and disabilities. Frequently, these pupils are found to have the most severely deviant childhood behavioral adjustments of all diagnostic groups. Hewett, et al. In dealing with such difficult children, present a program based on the following general principals: a. Present the child with small increments of learning that gradually increase in difficulty based on principles of programmed instruction. b. Immediately reward each correct response the child makes; use social praise and extrinsic motivators (money, candy, etc.); and withhold the reward for incorrect responses. c. Use systematic word review, discrimination exercises, and comprehension questions to consolidate learning. d. Provide the child with an actual reading (learning) experience in a real book in addition to programmed learning of words on a teaching machine. e. Freely adapt the steps, structure, and type of reward used in the program to ensure continued success. f. Maintain detailed records of each of the child's responses to follow his or her progress, determine his or her need for program modification, and provide teacher feedback.
For the child with specific
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