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Resources to help my slow learner?

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    Resources to help my slow learner?

    Hello!! I am almost done reading Simply Classical and it's been of great value. I went in to it wondering if my second born son is struggling with any disabilities, but after reading it I think he is probably just a typical slow learner with some behavioral issue that will work out after a few more years of diligent formative discipline on our end. He will be four in April. His older brother is your typical school-type child who learned to read at four and loves school, has long attention span, learned to articulate well very early, etc. So I have had to be careful to not compare. BUT...after reading this book I am wondering what specific resources you guys would suggest for true slow learners? When she described them as being able to learn, but at a slower and methodical approach that is so my second born! He may take thirty plus minutes to do a small puzzle on his own, but after lots of complaining about wanting/needing help, some convincing that he CAN do it on his own, he is able to very slowly do the whole thing on his own. Just an example. Also, getting him to stop and give us full attention, keep eyes on eyes, etc is VERY hard for him. I really don't panic much since I know he's probably a typical boy for this age, but again, I could really use some more resources for this age. We are going forward with A Year of Playing Skillfully next year and the following with the goal of starting first grade through Logos homeschool bundles like my son is. Are there any other support typical curriculum that could help me step by step make sure I'm providing the right content for this type of learning? Sometimes AYOPS is too flexible and I'm not sure how to make it a tad more rigid for my slow learner. Thanks!

    #2
    Good morning! At three, he may or may not be evidencing signs of difficulty, based on your descriptions. If I were you I would hesitate to say "slow learner," which usually implies a slightly lower intelligence. Rather, you can note some of your concerns, just as you have done here:

    - difficulty with eye contact
    - low confidence
    - difficulty sustaining attention
    - methodical, possibly slow to process information
    - seems to need more structure
    - seems to need more intentional discipline

    You may wonder if this is simply a difference in temperament from your first-born or something more, and it may be too early to tell. You have several options:

    - Consider an appointment with a developmental pediatrician. If you picked up Simply Classical wondering about this child, you may want to follow your instincts if only to rule out something more than mere temperament or slowness. This could be especially important if ANY of these apply: 1) speech or language or motor delays or differences, 2) sensory sensitivities, 3) similarities to extended family members (uncle?, grandpa?, nephew?) who have had learning or behavior difficulties throughout their lives, 4) a complicated pregnancy or birth, 5) others who have expressed concern to you or agreed with your concerns about your child.

    - Consider a more structured approach to address his needs for readiness in attention, concentration, and self-control. While he may enjoy the "creative" elements of play in your current program, and you could still pull activities from his favorites on the list, you might want to assess him a little more formally through our Readiness Assessments. Given his age, take the assessments for Level A, B, and C. Report back. We can better help you determine which resources will help, after you have done this.

    - Look now for ways to find the things you love about him. You are right that comparing can be damaging, not only to you but also to your relationship with him. He seems to appreciate one-on-one time, assistance, and attention, so you will want this to be directed at his strengths and delights, rather than his troubles, whenever possible. If he enjoys being read to, stories can become a good way to build language and secure bonds all at the same time. If he does not yet enjoy being read to, begin small with very short books.

    - Know that we now offer stand-alone resources, Myself & Others, that might help no matter which curriculum you use. Begin with the Book One Set, a 14-week course, and plan to continue to Book Two. These will be suitable for his age. Book One requires no writing, uses visual cue cards and hand signals to sustain attention, and works on the very behavior challenges you are seeing.

    Let us know where he scores on the various categories within the SC Readiness Assessments, and we will be happy to help with further recommendations.
    Last edited by cherylswope; 02-07-2019, 09:19 AM.

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      #3
      On Level B he scored a 10 or above for yes in every section, only leaving one or two at most in emerging and no. For level C he had an average of 8 for yes, 3-5 for emerging, and only one or two for no.

      I can totally see what you are saying about now labeling him slow learner. I think you 100% succinctly communicated my big concerns for him. I see that if I let this go without working towards correction and strengthening weaknesses now then it could become more of a habit/character problem as we go on. So what would you suggest to address those issues head on without going a "slow learner" route? My major concern is his lack of attention has made it so that he simply has almost no one to one understanding of numbers and doesn't recognize letters.

      Comment


        #4
        Originally posted by lexysauve View Post
        On Level B he scored a 10 or above for yes in every section, only leaving one or two at most in emerging and no. For level C he had an average of 8 for yes, 3-5 for emerging, and only one or two for no.

        I can totally see what you are saying about now labeling him slow learner. I think you 100% succinctly communicated my big concerns for him. I see that if I let this go without working towards correction and strengthening weaknesses now then it could become more of a habit/character problem as we go on. So what would you suggest to address those issues head on without going a "slow learner" route? My major concern is his lack of attention has made it so that he simply has almost no one to one understanding of numbers and doesn't recognize letters.
        Cheryl will have the best answers for you, but I would caution that your reference child (your oldest) isn’t a good reference for normal because normal varies — especially before age 7. Many normal kids learn to read at four while many other normal kids don’t. Many normal kids have good attention spans, many normal kids don’t (especially boys).

        Also, on the behavioral side: remember that 3 year olds don’t have “heart” issues. They have testing-the-waters and haven’t-learned-that-yet issues. It’s part of them developing an understanding of how the world and relationships work.

        At this age, these things need to be approached as opportunities to teach/coach rather than as character flaws. I’m NOT saying “He’s three, anything he does is fine”. I’m saying that you can only expect something that is both appropriate for his age and that you have actually taught and coached him on first. When consequences come in, they need to teach: “don’t do that again and here’s how”, not punish: “don’t do that again or else”.

        I didn’t learn all this until my oldest was 13 and convinced that he could never do anything right. It took two years of intense work on communication/coaching/proper consequences/relationship building to undo the damage. I praise God that it was able to be undone at all.
        Jennifer


        2018-2019
        DS-14 & DS-15 (MP9 Literature, Novare Intro to Physics, Light to the Nations I (CTP), MPOA for: Latin, Pre-Algebra, Ref/Con
        DS-12 (6M)
        DS-10 (SC3)
        DD-8 (MP2)
        DD-6 (SC2)
        DD-3 (NT using SCB for gradual intro to JrK)

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          #5
          Originally posted by lexysauve View Post
          On Level B he scored a 10 or above for yes in every section, only leaving one or two at most in emerging and no. For level C he had an average of 8 for yes, 3-5 for emerging, and only one or two for no.

          I can totally see what you are saying about now labeling him slow learner. I think you 100% succinctly communicated my big concerns for him. I see that if I let this go without working towards correction and strengthening weaknesses now then it could become more of a habit/character problem as we go on. So what would you suggest to address those issues head on without going a "slow learner" route? My major concern is his lack of attention has made it so that he simply has almost no one to one understanding of numbers and doesn't recognize letters.
          Then it seems if you would like to address the attention, concentration, possible processing or language foundations in a more structured or purposeful way, I would begin Level C. You will find it enjoyable yet focused on readiness, mastery, phonological awareness, oral language, fine-motor skills, listening with stories, number sense and more. All is integrated each week to help hold attention and build memory. He is young, so you might even take two weeks per weekly lesson to stretch your money and also to keep his lessons short, at least for the first 17-18 weeks.

          See what you think: Simply Classical Level C. We just had someone switch to Level C in a similar situation, and as soon as she saw the contents, she "got" it. You begin bringing order to his day, predictability, and coherence in content. All of this will help his self-control and attention over time. If you wanted to add Book One of Myself & Others, that might be a wise addition.
          Sample Lesson Plan Readiness Assessment Supply List Skills to Develop Animals, Alphabet, & Aesop Ages 4-5 (Chronological Age or Skill Level) Designed fo

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            #6
            Ok, dumb question and I think I may know the answer, but will these resources address emotions as a gift from God to be controlled and used for his glory as opposed to pandering to the emotions? I think I've been uncertain of how to address this topic with him because so many modern resources almost teach kids to give in and express instead of acknowledge, give thanks for, but control for the uses God has given o emotions.

            Comment


              #7
              Originally posted by lexysauve View Post
              Ok, dumb question and I think I may know the answer, but will these resources address emotions as a gift from God to be controlled and used for his glory as opposed to pandering to the emotions? I think I've been uncertain of how to address this topic with him because so many modern resources almost teach kids to give in and express instead of acknowledge, give thanks for, but control for the uses God has given o emotions.
              Myself & Others are not explicitly "Christian," but we created this to address this very issue. So many programs focused on social skills, social understanding, and emotions present an undue emphasis on the self and one's own feelings, rather than on self-control, human understanding, compassion, and service to others. We understand and appreciate your question.

              We include the more explicit Christian emphasis in our SC Core lessons.

              Comment


                #8
                Ditto the recommendation for Simply Classical C (or B, since he's not quite 4). Simply Classical (SC) B has a marvelous book written by a Christian author focusing on children's emotions as they relate to scripture. So, they get a bite-sized summary of age appropriate Biblical concepts, such as lying, apologizing, comforting, complaining, serving others, worshipping, being a peacemaker or unselfish, helping, forgiving, crying and behaving. The succinct scripture that goes with each can be memorized or just read aloud. It is amazing how after 6 months in SC B, my just-turned 5 yo recited John 1:1 when I asked where Jesus was when God created the world. Ah-mazing. They really start to get it. It really is such a beautiful education, and there is a ton of support on the forums here from moms who have walked this road ahead of you.

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