dyslexia treatment online Archives - Lexercise

AAP Changes Screen Time Recommendations

computer image of aap screen time updated recommendations

The American Academy of Pediatrics has lifted its recommended ban on screen time for children under 2 years of age. More importantly, they have researched the effects and recommended guidelines for educational and beneficial screen time. “The new guidelines, especially for very young children, shift the focus from WHAT is on the screen to WHO else is in the room” (Kamenetz, 2016).

The AAP recommends live video-chat, co-viewing, and interactive media use among children and a supervising adult.

Children “can learn new words from educational media, if and only if parents are watching alongside them, repeating what the video says and/ or drawing attention to what is on the screen…Co-view with your children, help children understand what they are seeing, and help them apply what they learn to the world around them.”(Kamenetz, 2016)

In effect, screens should not be used as a babysitter but rather as facilitation of information and interaction between the guardian and child.

Lexercise’s co-founder, Sandie Barrie Blackley, recently visited her son and granddaughters where she was able to witness this type of “co-viewing,” educational screen-time.

child and grandfather reading a poem on a computer screen

When Granddaddy was reading the poem, The Owl & The Pussycat on Sunday morning D. was puzzled by these lines:

“They dined on mince, and slices of quince,
Which they ate with a runcible spoon….”

She had never heard of mince, slices of quince, or a runcible spoon. So she and Granddaddy looked up images of these using Google Images. After checking out pictures of runcible spoons D. commented that at her school’s cafeteria they use plastic runcible spoons, but they call them sporks.

father and child discussing word meaning after looking them up on the computer

When D. and her sister were playing an online math logic game on Saturday morning Dad was there to coach.

This computer is in the home’s main living area so parents can easily be “side-by-side” with the children as they are using it. Parents also use an app that blocks all but approved sites.

Lexercise has always recognized the well-documented value of shared inquiry and joint engagement with a caring, mentoring adult. The Lexercise intervention platform is built to give parents all the tools they need to be a mentor and a change-agent for their struggling reader and/or writer. Learn how Lexercise combines interactive media and live chat to guarantee your child’s reading success here.


References:

Kamenetz, Anya. “Morning Edition.” NPRed. NPR. 21 Oct. 2016. Radio.

How Can I Help My Struggling Reader?

summer deals!If you’re reading this post, chances are good that you are concerned about your child’s reading.   Maybe in a recent parent-teacher conference you learned that your child is not “on level.”  You might have noticed your child is a reluctant reader, or that his or her reading is not as strong as other children his or her age. You want to know: how can I help my child get better at reading?  

Searching for an answer to that question, many parents go through a lengthy and often expensive diagnostic process. This process can provide valuable information about how your child learns. However, for the majority of struggling readers, this is not necessary. There are only a handful of reasons that can cause a child to struggle with reading. Thankfully, there are solutions for all of these problems.


 

Problem: Instructional failure

Some students struggle with “Dysteachia”.  No, this is not a technical diagnosis.  What it boils down to is instructional failure.  This can happen for a variety of reasons.  Some schools teach “guessing approaches” which are not effective instructional practice for many students.   Your child’s teacher may struggle with classroom behavior, resulting in wasted instructional time and reduced learning.  Especially in the upper grades, lack of progress may be due to interventions designed to treat the symptom (slow reading or poor understanding) instead of the root cause (the student doesn’t know how to sound out words.)

Solution:

One to one Structured Literacy therapy.  A therapist can work with your student one on one and, in a matter of months, get him or her caught up on reading!  For students who have not received proper reading instruction and struggle as a result will benefit from Structured Literacy therapy. This type of therapy doesn’t just help those with dyslexia or other learning disabilities. Structured Literacy has been proven to help anyone struggling with reading, writing and spelling!


 

Problem: Inattention or behavioral concerns

Other students struggle due to inattention in the classroom.  The teacher may deliver proper, research based instruction, but the student may have anxiety or attention concerns that prevent him or her from taking advantage of that instruction.  Some of these students may be diagnosed with ADHD.  For other students, the anxiety is due to a shame spiral from ongoing reading failure.  

Solution:

Teletherapy dramatically reduces the risk and shame students associate with reading mistakes by creating a safe, nurturing environment.  By building a trusting relationship with your child, your Lexercise therapist will create a safe space to practice, make mistakes, and improve reading. The one to one environment provided over the internet minimizes distractions and increases engagement in many students.  Children who can’t or don’t pay attention in whole class instruction are often engaged and attentive with the teletherapy approach.


 

ID-10032278Problem: Dyslexia

Dyslexia is a specific type of reading disability.  Students with dyslexia typically have deficits in phonological processing, rapid naming, or both.  Even when they are fully attentive in a classroom with excellent instruction, these students struggle with literacy.

Solution:

Structured Literacy therapy (formerly known as Orton-Gillingham) is the method research has indicated for students with dyslexia.  Our blended learning model allows you to receive this instruction in the comfort of your own home.  


 

Problem: other learning disabilities

You may have already undergone testing and had a professional explain that your child does not have dyslexia.  Still, he or she is not catching up in reading and there is a definite learning challenge.  

Solution:

Our Lexercise therapists are trained in a wide variety of therapeutic instructional approaches.  Call us and we will match you with a clinician that will get to the bottom of your child’s learning challenges and create a customized learning plan to help him or her succeed.  Regardless of the reason why your child is struggling to read, Lexercise teletherapy is a pathway to success!  

 

Photo Credit to: freedigitalphotos.net africa

How to Encourage Reading Practice!

Practice Makes Perfect

We’ve all heard the saying “practice makes perfect”, and in life we’ve all seen it’s truth. Neuroscience confirms that regular practice is a crucial component in learning a new skill. Lexercise uses online daily games and table-top activities to reinforce and master skills taught by a child’s clinical educator during their weekly 1 to 1 sessions.

By the time the majority of our students have started working with Lexercise they have experienced great obstacles and frustration in learning how to read. This can lead children to believe that their efforts are hopeless or that they aren’t smart, since their prior work did not give them the results they wanted. Lexercise Clinicians work with parents to re-motivate their child using our unique approach to practice, a critical components in learning how to read and write. Here are a few tips we’ve found in making ongoing practice more successful:

Explain to your child why practice is important

Look at this as brain training, NOT Lex_prescribed-practice_child-solo_illustrationhomework! First, the Lexercise program looks and feels different. We are not telling your child to read more, longer, faster…. this won’t work for a child with a language-based learning disability. The Structured Literacy method we use emphasizes mastery of skills where lessons AND practice are delivered systemically and intensively. This approach has been tested by the National Institutes for Health and is proven to work. What we are doing through our explicit instruction and practice is making connections in our brain’s language and literacy centers that were not as activated before. To “rewire” the brain, it takes a lot of deliberate practice, approximately 100 response challenges per day. Our customized online games and table-top activities give a child more than 100 response challenges a day.

Set a goal for daily/weekly practice- Plan for smaller more frequent practice!

Working with your child to set clear goals and expectations for practice help get their “buy in” since they are involved in the process. growthBy setting goals you and your child can work as a team to accomplish the goal, while modeling a very important skill, having a growth mindset. Working towards a jointly-set goal shifts the child’s thinking to a growth mindset where s/he thinks “I am going to practice so I can reach my practice goal which will help me become a stronger reader and writer,” instead of “Someone is making me do this.” Tracking practice using an incentive chart can help the child see his/her progress towards their goal. Plan for shorter, more frequent sessions (minimum of 4 times per week), versus longer sessions. This helps a child maintain attention, and get in the optimal “learning zone” (70%-90% accuracy).

Create a set time and space for practice to occur

Having a routine helps practice become a habit! Decide what time during the week works best for your child and family. Communicate this to everyone in the family so they are aware and can be supportive. It is important that there be a dedicated space for practice that is conducive to learning (quiet and distraction-free). Also, by having others know this set time, they can help give gentle reminders that it’s practice time when needed. It is also a good idea to figure out a system for table-top activities the parent leads. When will this occur? Who in the family will do the activities? Planning in advance for practice helps to make sure that it becomes a habit.

Immediately following practice, let the child do a preferred activity

Having a child complete practice first –before a preferred activity– gives a natural incentive. This could be before something that is regular occurrence such as: a meal, playing outside with friends, etc. Using a “first-then” statement can be helpful when communicating this. For example: “First complete your Lexercise games and 5 minutes of Whiteboard Spelling, then you can go outside and play with your friends.” It is important that immediately after the “first” task is completed they earn their preferred “then” activity. For younger students having a visual and setting a time can help to communicate these expectations.

Motivate your child during practice

hand-writing-mdVerbal praise and specific error correction goes a long way! Motivating with the end goal in mind is always helpful; we want to get to the point where your child is able to read and write with proficiency. Giving specific praise and feedback, helps them understand what it takes to train their brain to get there! When you see your child using the strategies taught in the session let them know by being very specific about what you saw (e.g. “I noticed when you got to that longer word, you broke the word down by its syllable type which made it more manageable.”). This reinforces the fact that looking at the structure of the word is more reliable than guessing. When a mistake is made, it is also important to give specific error correction so that they understand exactly why something is incorrect. During your weekly sessions your clinician will teach you exactly how to do this. Remember, verbal praise and specific and immediate feedback goes a long way!

Motivate your child after practice

star2Make time to review and celebrate the progress your child makes! It is so very important to celebrate your child’s success however large or small it may seem. Each portion of the deliberate practice we assign is one more step towards the goal of becoming and independent lifelong reader and writer. During our sessions you’ll see your clinician give online high-fives, count points for sentence dictation, and more! Our online game practice also tracks progress, through point goals. Each time a child plays they are able to see that progress is being made by watching their points increase. This point system is a means of encouraging repeated practice, with an emphasis on having an increase in accuracy and response time. You also may want to build in a specific individual motivation for your child. It could be a sticker chart for practicing games, rewards for reaching a point goal, etc.

Lexercise clinicians strive to help make each child’s practice as productive as possible. The best incentive to practice is when a child sees the progress he or she is making. This most often occurs when a child feels confident with their newly developed skills to pick up a book and read (without being told to!). Moments like that show us that all of the hard work and practice really is worthwhile.

Other Helpful Articles:

Daily practice: Won’t it get boring?

How to Encourage Daily, Structured Practice

How long should a child practice each day?

Parents Need To Know: Practice Works Wonders!

Online Orton-Gillingham: Too Good to be True?

girloncomputerParents study many dyslexia intervention options when they realize their child is falling behind in reading and writing, but they may not realize that online Orton-Gillingham therapy is an option. Now, online Orton-Gillingham therapy (the new term for this is Structured Literacy) may sound too good to be true but Lexercise has made it possible! Now you can receive the same level of clinical therapy that you would get in an office in the comfort of your home.

Benefits of Orton-Gillingham Online:

Orton-Gillingham is a complex approach consisting multiple components all of which are included in Lexercise’s online Orton-Gillingham therapy program. By providing Orton-Gillingham therapy online Lexercise gives you added benefits!

 

Convenience
Firstly, online therapy is extremely convenient. We have clients and clinicians alike all over the world that are able to connect due to our online nature. What was once a 2-3 hour commitment of traveling to and from an office is now just an hour in your own home! Scheduling conflicts are diminished as well. Let’s say you live in New York and can only participate in therapy after work at 7:00 pm, well we can match you with a clinician in California who is available at that time! You can even keep participating in therapy when you’re traveling, as long as you have an internet connection. It’s our goal to get you and your child the help you need in the most efficient and convenient way possible.

Parent Involvement
The Lexercise program has parents actively participate in their child’s Orton-Gillingham therapy. During your live, weekly online therapy sessions, you will sit behind your child and listen and observe to learn the lessons and techniques yourself. Using what you have learned you will be able to instruct your child throughout the week to help them master each level of therapy and complete their weekly practice activities. The hands-on parent role that Lexercise facilitates is one of our therapy’s key benefits.

file0001759554245Daily Practice
Daily practice is very important to reinforce and master the lessons learned in therapy. Lexercise has created online Orton-Gillingham daily practice games that make this fun and engaging for your child. With only 15 minutes of practice every day at least 4 days a week your child can advance through therapy at a fast pace, automating skills they will retain for a lifetime of use.

Begin Immediately!
A child who falls behind in 1st grade has a 1 in 8 chance of ever catching up. We urge families who are noticing their child falling behind to start Orton-Gillingham therapy immediately and not wait. Luckily, because of our large pool of qualified clinicians and online platform, you can start at your earliest convenience. We don’t require you to have a formal dyslexia diagnosis to participate in therapy. Our goal is the help your child get the help they need as soon as possible and as conveniently as we can.

Lexercise is the most efficient and beneficial form of receiving Orton-Gillingham therapy. But don’t just take our word for it, hear what other parents are saying: