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    #240486 - 11/16/17 07:11 AM When OG doesn't work
    geofizz Offline
    Member

    Registered: 12/06/10
    Posts: 658
    DS11 has now completed 3 years of OG as part of his IEP. His OG teachers are well trained and generally considered some of the best in the state for the quality of their work. DS is engaged in the OG sessions, and everyone reports he works hard with focused attention.

    In his 3 year re-evaluation, his WJ and TOWL spelling scores went down each by about a half a standard deviation. The split between his functional vocabulary, both written and spoken, and his spelling is now more than 3 standard deviations. He knows all the rules, but is unable to apply them even when editing if composing or editing. The writing samples I have indicate he misspells 25-30% of all words on first attempt.

    I'm told there is nothing more that they can do for him besides accommodate with spell check. I'm hearing from the team that no one really knows how to address this in kids like DS. "Some kids with dyslexia never get to the point where they can spell reliably."

    We have a truly amazing IEP team, where each person has a clear understanding of the 2e issues at hand. Everyone recognizes that many of DS's issues are fundamentally rooted in being 2e, as the spelling would be less of an issue if the vocabulary weren't so extreme. Accommodation only goes so far, as spell check and related tools require he be somewhat close to the target word. He also will not have access to spell check on AP exams, yet it was the goal of everyone on the team that DS have full access to advanced classes and associated exams in high school.

    Help? Thoughts? Direction? Testing I should request?

    Likely related info: DS will continue to qualify for an IEP under OHI as he's a disorganized mess without support. OG and an amazing gifted language arts teacher have largely resolved the decoding and writing composition issues that led to the initial IEP qualification. His handwriting is illegible, however OT data suggest the issue isn't motor control or strength. He skipped first grade where handwriting is taught. I suspect he's suffering from lack of instruction in this area. Handwriting will be part of the next IEP, and folks are looking into ways to address this productively going forward.

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    #240489 - 11/16/17 12:55 PM Re: When OG doesn't work [Re: geofizz]
    aeh Offline
    Member

    Registered: 04/26/14
    Posts: 3663
    That's a challenge. I have met a handful of students over the past couple of decades who were truly intractable dyslexics, even with high-quality OG. AP exams can be tricky, as the College Board basically gets to make their own rules, however, especially with his documented handwriting issues, he should be able to get some useful ones:

    "If you have a documented disability, you may be eligible for accommodations on the AP Exams such as:
    Extended time
    Large-type exams
    Large-block answer sheets
    Permission to use a braille device, computer, or magnifying device
    A reader to dictate questions
    A writer to record responses
    A written copy of oral instructions; as well as other accommodations"

    I would suggest that the most applicable is the second-to-last accommodation, which currently is listed as scribe, but in functional adult life, should target speech-to-text assistive technology. Perhaps also computer, which may or may not include access to spellcheck.

    A few thoughts on AT: spell check actually works quite well for severely-impaired spellers if used in combination with thesaurus. I routinely recommend that students with his profile (very high oral vocabulary/very low spelling vocabulary) use them this way:

    1. type/dictate an easy-to-spell synonym of the word you have in mind to your device.
    2. use spellcheck to make any necessary corrections.
    3. highlight the word and open the thesaurus function, selecting the best word (often one you had in mind already) from the list offered.

    Yes, it's a bit more work, but it allows students to employ their spoken vocabulary in their written products.

    For classroom work and adult life, I would suggest that the number one accommodation will be, as I mentioned earlier, speech-to-text.
    _________________________
    ...pronounced like the long vowel and first letter of the alphabet...

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    #240492 - 11/17/17 04:31 AM Re: When OG doesn't work [Re: geofizz]
    geofizz Offline
    Member

    Registered: 12/06/10
    Posts: 658
    Thanks aeh.

    Thanks for the info on the AP accommodations. I wasn't aware of the scribe accommodation. Any idea of what it takes to qualify for that beyond typing responses?

    DS already uses a thesaurus to find the word he wants when he's way off: so he figured that one out already.

    Speech to text so far has been a failure. He has oral motor apraxia which means that the clarity of his speech is too low for the computer to pick up, particularly when he has a cognitive load from composition at the same time. He was left so frustrated last time he tried it that he won't try again. District-provided tools did work for his sister when she broke her arm, though.

    So how do you determine "truly intractable dyslexics"? If you've seen just a handful in your years of practice, it leaves me wondering what fraction of the dyslexic population this applies to, and what secondary factors might be present. While my statements above as to his OG services are accurate, I've had persistent concerns about some of the details of how the services were provided.

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    #240502 - 11/17/17 12:21 PM Re: When OG doesn't work [Re: geofizz]
    polarbear Offline
    Member

    Registered: 09/29/11
    Posts: 3363
    Originally Posted By: geofizz

    Thanks for the info on the AP accommodations. I wasn't aware of the scribe accommodation. Any idea of what it takes to qualify for that beyond typing responses?


    Sorry I can't help with the OG etc, but just wanted to let you know that we had no issues getting either College Board or ACT accommodations for our ds - I think the key was supplying all of our documentation: original diagnosis report + most recent 504.

    There's a standard set of accommodations you can apply for through CB, or you can request accommodations your ds receives that are outside that standard suite. There's a note on the form that if you request the "outside the norm" accommodations you may have to arrange specifics re testing for your student (sorry I can't remember the exact wording).. I mention it just to let you know that our experience was... we had to do that anyway even though the accommodations we requested were all in the "routine" list.

    Best wishes,

    polarbear

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    #240503 - 11/17/17 01:00 PM Re: When OG doesn't work [Re: geofizz]
    aeh Offline
    Member

    Registered: 04/26/14
    Posts: 3663
    Working with secondary-school students in a system where I have a pretty good idea of the quality of OG instruction in the feeder schools, I can usually make a decent determination of whether there is any additional benefit to be obtained from OG by looking at multiple aspects of reading. Fluency is usually the last deficit to resolve, although for some, spelling is where the residual lies. But generally, they can apply their word-level reading skills in isolation, even if slowly.

    Keep in mind also that OG addresses primarily the phonological awareness prong of reading decoding. There are two other principal factors: phonological memory and rapid naming (automaticity). When used at a high enough level of intensity and frequency, some of the automaticity may be taken care of through sufficient repetition (though there is another research-based intervention with better data for pure fluency development). Typically, OG-type programs should include at least 2x60 per week, but preferably at least 5x45 in small group instruction. (The home-based individual tutoring programs from All About Learning recommend 5x20 for reading, plus 5x20 for spelling.) The specialists I've worked with have also made decisions about groupings vs individual intervention time based on factors including the student's responsiveness to intervention and level of severity; sometimes even the small group is moving at an incompatible pace for specific students.

    Another factor is that there are many more ways to spell a sound than there are ways to pronounce a spelling. It sounds like he actually has made significant progress in OG, as his reading is described as having resolved. It may be that his intervention needs to shift to target spelling/encoding more than reading/decoding at this point. He may know the rules, but he may also need incremental practice to acquire some more fluency.

    And one more item: among the more intractable dyslexics, I have seen severe articulation disorders popping up as a pattern. I think it significantly interferes with sound-symbol correspondence, because the sound they generate/hear is not the one aligned with written English. So then it becomes a huge memory task, to match arbitrary sounds with arbitrary symbols. I've seen some success with combining the speech therapy and OG (in one case, the speech path was also our OG therapist, so she was able to actually do both interventions together).
    _________________________
    ...pronounced like the long vowel and first letter of the alphabet...

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    #240506 - 11/18/17 06:24 AM Re: When OG doesn't work [Re: geofizz]
    geofizz Offline
    Member

    Registered: 12/06/10
    Posts: 658
    Thank you both, polarbear and aeh.

    The input on the severe articulation disorders is interesting. I've often wondered if he doesn't even hear the sounds in words like we do, thought his hearing is impeccable and he skims above the line for Auditory Processing Disorder. When discussing grammar, his entire IEP team felt like he needs to translate his thoughts into English before he can write them.

    DS's initial SLP dx when he was 3 (before they even dx'd him with the apraxia) said that he had a 25% chance of reading on grade level by 12th grade with appropriate therapy. It had struck me as odd and targeted at guilting parents into following through with therapy, particularly since he was nearly reading already at that point and he made lightening fast gains on the artic goals he had at that point (apraxia dx didn't come until age 7). ...He hit a PHS level for comprehension in 4th grade. Spelling, however, seems like it might wallow in the mid-elementary levels. Alas 2e.

    Thank you so much for the input on accommodations. We have a meeting in January set up with the director of student services and the high school vice principal to discuss his HS pathway, since he'll go there for math starting next year. I will add the accommodations to the discussion in that meeting with an eye toward college board accommodations. He's on track for at least 2 AP classes before the end of this next IEP.


    Edited by geofizz (11/18/17 06:28 AM)

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    #240508 - 11/18/17 08:11 AM Re: When OG doesn't work [Re: geofizz]
    aeh Offline
    Member

    Registered: 04/26/14
    Posts: 3663
    FYI, a recent article on artic and related disorders and reading disabilities. The study itself is not particularly relevant to your child's age range, but there are several interesting references in the introduction.

    http://onlinelibrary.wiley.com/doi/10.1111/jcpp.12648/full
    _________________________
    ...pronounced like the long vowel and first letter of the alphabet...

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    #240509 - 11/18/17 09:08 AM Re: When OG doesn't work [Re: geofizz]
    geofizz Offline
    Member

    Registered: 12/06/10
    Posts: 658
    A very interesting read, thanks.

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    #240518 - 11/19/17 06:22 AM Re: When OG doesn't work [Re: geofizz]
    Pemberley Offline
    Member

    Registered: 08/07/11
    Posts: 734
    Hi Geofizz! Long time no see...

    Not sure it will be much help but happy to share what's going on with DD12 in case there is something of use for you.

    DD spent 4 years at a spec Ed school and had a truly wonderful reading interventionist. She used Wilson consistently and by the end of 5th grade DD was at (or ever so slightly above) grade level. At that point teacher started introducing some parts of Lindamood Bell. I'm not sure just what parts but could go through notes and emails to see if there is any more specific info if you need it. By the end of 6th grade DD scored a 97 on the level Z Fontas and Pinnell. She was technically 1 point away from being released from dyslexia intervention. Reading teacher said the 1 point came from putting the emphasis on the wrong syllable a couple of times while reading a passage aloud but DD self corrected so she wasn't concerned. Everyone on the IEP team (including me) was shocked by this amazing performance.

    That being said she still can't spell. At all. I mean even simple 3 letter words. She is now less likely to omit vowels than she was a couple years ago but they aren't necessarily the correct vowels. She still confuses certain letter sounds. While she can tell you the rules she can't really apply them while writing. (ie Just this morning she asked me how to spell "raw". If asked she could tell you how the "aw" sound should be spelled but that doesn't seem to enter into her process when writing the word herself.) Very few problems with decoding but encoding remains a significant challenge. Last year as part of her TAG program she had to create a "Jeopardy" game and lost points because on her title page she said Her Topic ADDITION instead of Her Topic EDITION. To her they sound alike and she had no idea she used the wrong word...

    She is dysgraphic as well as dyslelexic so even more problems when writing by hand. She now chooses to write short passages by hand but they continue to be significantly shorter and way more simplified than what she types or does using voice-to-text.

    She is no longer at spec Ed school so no longer working with awesome reading teacher so I don't anticipate much improvement in spelling. I have been told her spelling will likely improve now that she is reading text rather than relying solely on audio books. Frankly I don't really believe it will improve too much. From my perspective she made more progress by the end of 6th grade than I ever expected her to make by the end of high school so any further improvement will be gravy.

    Taking notes, writing worksheets or doing any kind of standardized testing remains an elusive goal. I admire your son for being in a position to be looking at AP exams. I'm not convinced we will ever get there - certainly not without significant accommodations being in place. In these situations I wonder what would the college board do to accommodate a child who was let's say a quadriplegic? Early in his career DH had a student who wrote beautifully but had no use of his limbs. He was in college - and doing quite well - so there had to have been accommodations in place for his testing. Sadly that young man passed away long before DD came into the picture so we can't ask him but it shows that any sort of physical limitation has to have been accommodated - right? I think of that as my starting point.

    We are just starting to look toward high school here - trying to determine what she will need to be able to do so we can work backward. I wonder if that might translate to contacting the college board now so you have time to get things in place for him before he takes that first AP class.

    Anyway that's my input whatever it may be worth. Kudos to you, your son and his whole team for all the hard work and progress!

    ETA And yes DD also has the articulation issues. Diagnosed with dysarthria her intelligibility has been rated at 91% after years of speech and oral motor work. She can hear errors when others speak (and can actually be pretty persnickety about it ...) but can't hear or feel the difference in her own speech. Despite this the voice-to-text built in to iPads works for her most of the time. She has to force herself to speak slowly and distinctly, and often gets frustrated having to repeat and correct, but she can use it pretty reliably. She then uses the text-to-voice feature to read the sentence back to her to be sure it says what she thinks it says. Time consuming but at least she can do it.


    Edited by Pemberley (11/19/17 06:34 AM)

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    #240519 - 11/19/17 10:37 AM Re: When OG doesn't work [Re: Pemberley]
    chay Offline
    Member

    Registered: 08/07/13
    Posts: 447
    Loc: Canada
    Originally Posted By: Pemberley
    In these situations I wonder what would the college board do to accommodate a child who was let's say a quadriplegic?
    FWIW one of my sibling's friends is a quadriplegic. In high school, they had a full-time aide that attended all classes, took notes and scribed outputs. Their exams were written in a separate room with a scribe and extra time. They finished a post-secondary degree and masters and with similar arrangements. With tech advancements, they have been able to use speech to text for some things. They has a career in her field. (I don't want to post too many more details for privacy reasons but if more details would help - send me a PM). Now all of this was outside the U.S. so the college board wasn't involved but if they could do stuff like that 25+ years ago, you'd hope that it would only be better now.


    Edited by chay (11/19/17 10:42 AM)
    Edit Reason: making it even less specific

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