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How to Help Your Child Finish the School Year Strong

Jul 18, 2019
 
 

“My teacher hates me!” James exclaimed as he threw his backpack onto the kitchen floor. “She always yells at me for talking or not paying attention, but I am paying attention!”

 

For parents, it can be disheartening to hear that your child feels disliked or disrespected by his teacher — even if you wonder if he’s exaggerating and maybe things in the classroom aren’t as contentious as he makes them seem.

 

By this point in the school year, most classrooms have established a rhythm, and it may feel like your child’s personality or learning style just doesn’t mesh well with his teacher’s.  But what can be done?

 

  • Ask your child for examples of what happens at school while acknowledging his feelings. “It sounds like you had a rough day at school. I’m sorry to hear that. Help me picture what happened. What did Mrs. Haggerty say? What was happening right before that?”

 

  • Use imagery language to help your child picture what he could do differently, based on what the issue may be. “I know you were so excited about going to the movies over the weekend. When do you picture is the best time to tell your friends? During homeroom announcements or during recess?” Offering choices can make it easier for students who have difficulty verbalizing their thoughts or are hesitant to talk about how school is going.

 

  • Check in with the teacher. Because tone can often be misinterpreted, it may be best to meet in person. Sending a brief email to set up a time to chat may be helpful. Keeping a positive and respectful tone may help keep things productive: “James seems to be having a tough time meeting the classroom expectations lately. I would love to meet one day to discuss what I can do to help support him.”

James’s mother, Christine, took all of the aforementioned steps: she asked James what was happening and took notes while he was talking so he would know she took his concerns seriously. She met with Mrs. Haggerty and remained neutral despite feeling angry and hurt that James felt disliked and disrespected. Mrs. Haggerty reported that James was disruptive in class, didn’t follow her directions and wasted time instead of completing assignments. They decided that Mrs. Haggerty would send home a note each day reporting on James’s behavior.

 

Christine sat James down and they talked about what he could do to be a good listener and a good friend in the classroom. They practiced examples at home and Christine scoured Pinterest for ideas about motivators and sticker charts she could use to help make James have more fun at school.

 

Despite everyone’s efforts, James came home crying again a few weeks later. “Mrs. Haggerty gets mad at me for not turning to the right page but she says everything too fast. I can’t read the big words in the Social Studies textbook, so I ask to use the bathroom or make jokes about whoever is sitting next to me. Then Mrs. Haggerty yells at me, and I feel so sad because I was trying my best but I just can’t remember what she said to do!”

 

James’ stresses come pouring out between sobs.

 

For students like James, behaviors often begin in the classroom when the workload becomes too hard or when they realize they aren’t able to read as well or as quickly as their peers. They know they can’t always do the assignments presented to them, so it becomes easier to find new and clever ways to avoid tasks. James has a high IQ, so it’s often assumed that he should be able to read and comprehend as well as anyone — and if he can’t, it must be because he’s being lazy or doesn’t care. James’ self-esteem slowly started to plummet as he noticed more and more how much easier reading was for his peers.

 

But if the foundational sensory-cognitive skills for reading are not in place, students may struggle to reach their learning potential. A cause of difficulty in establishing sight words and contextual fluency is difficulty in visualizing letters in words. This is called weak symbol imagery. A primary cause of language comprehension problems is difficulty creating an imagined gestalt. This is called weak concept imagery. This weakness causes individuals to get only “parts” of information they read or hear, but not the whole.

 

Signs of weak symbol imagery can be easier to spot (slow, labored reading, difficulty with spelling) than those of weak concept imagery (difficulty with following directions, answering open-ended questions, grasping humor, mental mapping).

 

Watch the video below to hear a mother describe how Lindamood-Bell instruction helped unlock her daughter’s reading potential. Like James, she was struggling to read despite being extremely bright.

 

 

To learn more, contact your local Learning Center

 

Double Bay (02) 9328 7119 | Chatswood (02) 9410 1006

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Attention South Pasadena, California-area parents and professionals!
Lindamood-Bell will join @insightcollective.spasadena for their annual free dyslexia screening event on Saturday, May 4th! Appointments are limited and required—call 626-765-4482 or email admin@orenboxerphd.com
The Lindamood-Bell Learning Ability Evaluation sheds light on how your child's strengths and weaknesses impact their reading, comprehension, and math skills. You'll receive personalized recommendations for the type and duration of instruction that can transform your child's learning ability and confidence! 
Get started at the link in our bio, @lindamoodbellofficial.
Join us this summer for Lindamood-Bell’s evidence-based instruction, where we improve Reading, Comprehension, and Math skills in just a few weeks. 
Check out the full testimonial from pediatric neuropsychologist Dr. Oren Boxer at the link—watch now at the link in our bio, @lindamoodbellofficial.
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Now hiring for summer! 🌞📚
We’re looking for energetic, positive individuals to work as tutors (who we call Clinicians) in a Lindamood-Bell Learning Center. Join us as we teach students to read and comprehend to their potential! For more information and to apply, follow the link in our bio, @lindamoodbellofficial.
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#LindamoodBell #NowHiring
Students of all ages and abilities thrive at Lindamood-Bell Academy! We develop foundational skills and provide a personalized learning experience—in-person or live online.
📆Join us on Wednesday, April 18, for our Lindamood-Bell Academy Virtual Open House. Get details and register now—follow the link in our bio, @lindamoodbellofficial.
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📣Attention educators! 
Join us Wednesday, April 17th, for a Leaders in Literacy Webinar featuring Dr. Robert Pasternack. As a teacher, New Mexico State Special Education Director, and, ultimately, as Assistant Secretary for the Office of Special Education and Rehabilitative Services (OSERS) at the U.S. Department of Education, Dr. Parternack has spent his career focused on improving student outcomes. Register now at the link in our bio, @lindamoodbellofficial.
Lindamood-Bell summer learning can change your child’s life! Our evidence-based instruction improves Reading, Comprehension, and Math in just a few weeks. 
⏳Enroll now for special savings on your first week of summer learning. Hurry, spots are filling fast! Follow the link in our bio, @lindamoodbellofficial.
.
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#lindamoodbell #testimonial #tutor
Now hiring for summer! 
We’re seeking energetic, positive individuals to work as clinicians (tutors) in a Lindamood-Bell Learning Center. Join us as we teach students to read and comprehend to their potential! For more information and to apply, follow the link in our bio, @lindamoodbellofficial.
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#LindamoodBell #NowHiring
Our learning center creates a personalized learning plan tailored to each child’s specific needs. Students often make years of improvement after just a few weeks. Now enrolling for summer! Follow the link in our bio, @lindamoodbellofficial.
Dr. Harold Koplewicz, founder of the @childmindinstitute, joined @nprfreshair to discuss why kids and teens are experiencing unprecedented levels of anxiety and depression— and what parents can do about it. 
On the topic of dyslexia and other learning difficulties, Dr. Koplewicz describes the value of evidence-based reading instruction and his family’s personal experience with Lindamood-Bell. 
Listen to the full episode – Link in @nprfreshair’s bio.
Your student can thrive with Lindamood-Bell Academy! We develop foundational skills and provide a personalized learning experience—in-person or live online.
📆Join us on Wednesday, April 18, for our Lindamood-Bell Academy Virtual Open House. Get details and register now—follow the link in our bio, @lindamoodbellofficial.
.
.
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#LindamoodBellAcademy #LindamoodBell #dyslexia #privateschool
This summer, Lindamood-Bell can make the difference of a lifetime for your student. 
Our evidence-based instruction improves reading, comprehension, and math in a matter of weeks.
⏳Enroll now for Early Bird Savings on Summer Instruction. Learn more and get started at the link in our bio, @lindamoodbellofficial.
.
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.
#lindamoodbell #testimonial #summercamp
🌞Now hiring for summer! We’re looking for energetic, positive individuals to work as tutors (clinicians) in a Lindamood-Bell Learning Center. 
📚Join us as we teach students of all ages to read and comprehend to their potential. We provide paid training in our evidence-based approach!
🌟View our current open positions and apply today! Follow the link in our bio, @lindamoodbellofficial.
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#LindamoodBell #SummerPositions #JoinOurTeam  #NowHiring
Looking for a school where your child can thrive? Your child can reach their amazing potential with Lindamood-Bell Academy!
💡Join us on Wednesday, April 18, for our Lindamood-Bell Academy Virtual Open House. Get details and register now at the link in our bio, @lindamoodbellofficial.
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#lindamoodbellacademy #lindamoodbell #testimonial #openhouse
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