View Full Version : Does this make sense?

07-29-2013, 05:01 AM
Ok, need to think out loud here...

So my middle kiddo has always had issues with reading comprehension/vocab/spelling. I know his issues are mainly due to his working memory deficit and it's all stuff we're working on.

But, I had this thought. It seems we can't ever go further in most subjects because of his lack of vocabulary and comprehension. So I'm thinking that this year, we will spend a lot of time (if not most) on mainly building his vocabulary, which in my own little theory world, will help increase his comprehension (also working on making "pictures" out of the words he reads, it's something that I struggle with as well and have been working on for myself).

So THEN, once we get his vocab up, it should help considerably with other subjects, right? Like, maybe skipping any formal history/social studies etc since he HATES it, and watch tons of video's instead of all the reading and whatnot (which we both hate lol). My thinking is that this will help keep his working memory and short term memory less filled with those and more filled with the vocab and such.

My thought is that we do this mostly with very short 5-10 minute exercises, many games (both board games and online games). We will definitely be heavy on flocabulary, he had big gains with that in just the 2 week trial he did it. I just found word ladders and am getting that, I feel I need to go back to basics with him even though "technically" he's in 6th grade. I also found that k5learning.com reading program seemed to get him to "think" about things more critically and also remember what he read, so I think I'll pull him into the 4th grade reading with that and build his confidence so he can work up in it.

Then for spelling and such (his is atrocious), I LOOOOVE Logic of English. I watched the video on it and wished this was around when I was a kid. Stuff just clicked, so I'm using that with both him and my youngest who is starting 4th grade this year and her first year of hs'ing.

I am looking into Dynamic Literacy also, what do y'all think of this program? I seems basic enough to give him more foundation (he did roots and such in private school, but the activities were WAY too involved and used to much of his WM space).

Then to get him into reading more, I asked him would he like to continue with the reading program that we were using that was supposed to bring huge gains, but for him, it just didn't. He had very small/moderate gains if any. Or read comic books/graphic novels of his choice. Normally he hates to read because, like me, he can't remember what he reads because he can't make a picture. But in my research in graphic novels/comics for kids like this is that these types of books for kids that don't have the vocabulary and can't "make the pictures", it makes a huge difference because they can figure out what's happening by looking at the pictures.

So (whew, that was longer than I anticipated!)...
word ladders
Logic of English
Possibly Dynamic Literacy???
graphic novels/comics of his choice. Maybe throw in some chester comix ;

My plan like I said earlier, is to only spend 5-10 minutes at a time on each of these, all spread out between math/science/real life learning and playing :)

Anything I should add? Take away???

Oh and BTW, I think I'll be pulling him mostly back to 4th grade LA, which happens to be the grade my daughter will be, so they can be working together a lot.

07-29-2013, 01:57 PM
I think it sounds like you are trusting your instincts, which is good! If he can learn content of history and science better from videos, just use videos. No point wasting time reading books he isnt going to be able to follow.

I definitely think the idea of graphic novels in good. I'm also thinking - Raven and I are reading the novelization of the Star Wars movies 1-6. after we read the book, we watch the movie. You might want to try it in reverse - watch a movie, then find the novelization, so he already knows the story and he can maybe make the connections in reverse - so that the book makes more sense if he can already visualize it?

idk, i've never had that problem exactly, but i thought i'd throw out another idea.

07-29-2013, 02:11 PM
My almost 12 year old is dyslexic. I have found with her that using graphic novels, comic books, videos are all great strategies.
For us, I have to limit how much shifting around and changing subjects that we do. She will shut down.
We usually read a book, then watch the movie. The exception is if the language is going to be difficult for her, then we reverse it (think Shakespeare and Silas Marner).
When she has starts balking at reading something, I back off completely and we read it orally or find a video or get the audible book.
She is working ahead of her "grade level" (if we go by public school), I just modify what we do.