Wednesday, December 19, 2007


This is what I mean. Labels are just labels. With every decade there are new labels and new ways of describing the same learning challenges. The labels do not solve the problem or lack of skill. The tools to help the child acquire the skill are what is needed. If to learn the skill they need to hear the instruction 10,000 times, then that is what needs to be done. The method of hearing it over and over does not change. Kids who learn this way do not just click. Why am I blogging about this some more? Because I live with that kid and no matter how many times people tell me that he really just reached an age and it clicked, I know that is not true. He finally was given the tools to learn and it worked. Given the correct tools, he went from a kindergarten reading level to a 5th grade reading level in one year. I knew that the same sort of solution must exist for spelling so I called and sure enough was led to the tools that will work. This guy, Mr. Maloney, does know what he is talking about as my child is proof that it works. Seeing the light bulbs pop in his head to having things explained in a way that helped him be able to read and then actually to be able to do it was incredible. If my explanation of how this type of learning does not make sense to you, then I guess perhaps you would have to walk around in my shoes and in my child’s shoes to believe that it is true. I know it is going to take time to get through the spelling program but when that child decides he has had it and is ready to conquer and divide, then I am ready to comply and help him. A willing student means everything.

Perhaps my explanation would still lead you to believe that it was the child's age that was the difference. The difference was really teaching the child the right approach to reading. How do we approach each word as it comes to us while reading. Our 6 year and 12 year old learned extremely quickly but that was because the approach made sense to them. A child who is just reluctant to read but can actually read words is different from a child who simply can not read. This child of mine's spelling approach is the same as how he approached reading. There is no approach whatsoever to his spelling. Put down some sounds and maybe it will work. Spelling is a skill and if the approach that works for most does not work for everyone, then there is a different way to teach it that will work. So why not teach the child the way it will work rather than keep trying to teach the child the way that works for most other children. Hmmmm........

Ramble, ramble.....feel free to ask questions if this does not make sense to you.

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