Posts filed under ‘Learning Problems’

Better Focus for More Productivity

Top Ten Tips
1. There is no such thing as multi-tasking, there is only attention switching.
2. Disrupting attention leads to lower productivity.
3. Worrying about performance leads to mess-ups. An athlete, for instance, knows that best performance comes from automatic, not thought-through action.
4. One may reduce the 10,00 hours dramatically by using attention while practicing.
5. There are at least 4 kinds of attention:
One-pointed, goal oriented (good for getting something done)
Open awareness (good for creativity and new ideas)
Reading others (good for satisfying life & getting things done together)
Reading systems (good for organizations, and distant threats)
And possibly a 5th: meta-cognition, or thinking about thinking
6. Self-control correlates with success more than any other factor, including income of family of origin or IQ.
7. Negativity causes focus on the bad too narrowly.
8. Positive emotion widens attention.
9. Stress and over work shut down good attention — in all areas.
10. Social skills, including organizational skills, can be increased through attentional exercises.

Call me if you want training on focusing. Call me if you want some help reading your organization. 512-249-7629
Type below if you want to comment or ask a question.

June 22, 2015 at 8:38 pm Leave a comment

Easy Peasy Assessments – either Benchmark or Norm Based

You asked for easy assessments. You don’t want to think through the issues of validity and reliability. Hiring a professional would be great. Well will talk about that later. But what is a TEACHER to do, who has no time but wants to start doing assessments?

I have the answer! Easy assessments for 18 months, 2 years old, 3 year olds, and 4 year olds. Better than others because they include social & character items as well as gross and fine motor skills and other academic readiness items. Only $20.00 for each age, and you may reproduce them for your entire class.

Either mail $20 for each one you select, along with your address and $5.00 for shipping or pay by Paypal.

for toddlers

for 2 year olds

for 3 year olds

for 4 year olds

Now, if you want a norm based assessment, then I can come out to give you Kauffman Kindergarten Readiness assessment for only $30.00 a student. This is a great deal: a scientifically strong test, tailored exactly to the needs of rising 4 year olds, and a fraction of the cost of what a psychologist would charge. Call me to set up a schedule for your graduating 4 year olds or all your school! 512/249-7629 Call now — or email me at info@orgstrat.net

April 14, 2015 at 5:59 pm Leave a comment

Ferguson Says Diversity Training Still Very Relevant

I started doing “diversity training” back in the 1990s. I was wondering if it were really a “dead horse.”  Recent seminar feedback (diversity doesn’t apply here) and recent news (Ferguson. MO) suggest that it is still very relevant today. Please keep me in mind as your diversity trainer. Unlike most, I have a Master’s in Sociology and real experience dealing across barriers in a successful manner.  Yes, even if you are “just training in early childhood.”  Yes, especially if you are training any sort of teacher, you need someone with broad background, practical yes, but also scientific.  Not just someone pushing the latest trend. I have some thought-through and tested ideas — ideas that seem to be entirely new to most. Don’t be hemmed in by looking just where your feet are.  Look around to see where you might go.  Then find someone who knows the landscape, and follow her.  Call me today to book me for any training having to do with diversity or conflict reduction. 512/249-7629.

 

November 25, 2014 at 2:53 pm 3 comments

Detox! Hydrate!

Detoxing, drainage, off loading toxicity is all the rage among the health-interested adults. I am not going to urge you try some de-toxing protocol on children, but I am going to remind that you pay how important it is to allow children enough water. Cutting edge science is pointing to toxicity as a major problem for children! As the weather gets warmer, children need even more hydration, just as we do. Remember that orange juice, pop. and tea do not hydrate. Be sure that the drinks are not heavily loaded with sugar, either. Off-loading too much sugar from a little system puts hydration and detoxifying off balance too. Water is always great. Well, test the water. Be sure it tastes good. Purified, cold water is always good.

April 30, 2014 at 3:39 am 1 comment

Promised list of resources for children’s learning problems in Austin now posted.

Here is the promised to post resources in Austin for children with special learning needs .   This is not necessarily an exhaustive list, just the ones I know about. Please be invited to post your favorites too.  I do think every director ought to have a list.

Autism Spectrum Disorder
Johnson Center The Johnson Center for Child Health & Development :
http://www.johnson-center.org/site/contact The Johnson Center for Child Health and Development 1700 Rio Grande Street, Suite 200 Austin, TX 78701 Telephone 512.732.8400 Fax 512.732.8353 (Expensive and have been snooty to me, but I still think they are the best such resource in town for autism.)

ABA – Today there is more than one provider. CARD was the first one.
CARD 9390 Research Blvd. Suite 100 Austin, TX 78759 New inquiries: (855) 345-2273   Phone: (512) 330-9520 Fax: (512) 330-9505 Email: info@centerforautism.com   It is clear that some have been helped a great deal by this.

Dr. J. Cunningham – in San Marcos, closed his center.

The Dan Center for Autism Wellness and Recovery http://www.thedancenterforautism.com One MUST read CAN! Book. It includes scores of refercnes to scientific peer reviewed journals, has fairly precise protocols, and a summary on the back cover that will open your eyes. Your child does not have to have autism. Many children have improved so much that it is possible to say that “they used to have autism.”

I do not recommend “autismspeaks” because I think it is unduly negative, not scientifically informed, and while I do not know for sure about this organization, I do know that some groups that appear to be parent support groups are really marketing arms for large corporations. DAN! has parent training that is scientifically based.

Sensory Integration and Clumsy Child Syndrome (yes that is actually the technical name)

Kathy Nicholson, From the Heart Therapy Center Phone: (512)-306-1707 Fax: (512)-306-7380
Nicki Branch OT moved.
There are other OT s in town.  There is a debate about what discipline should be “treating” SI or even exactly what the problem is, but the OT’s seem to be helping in lots of cases.

Dyslexia

Scottish Rite – free and time tested “language retraining”
Fast4Word, (from Scientific Learning) unduly expensive, phonemic awareness training via computer.  Will help those for whom it is meant. Brain HQ has a similar program out meant for seniors.  Please let me know about competitors.
Pat Sekel is Austin’s top teacher trainer for dyslexia, has a doctorate from UT.
Dr. Swank has a tutoring center and experts say she does voodoo, but if she has good results, you might check out her center.

ADD/ADHD
Oy vey – stop the red dye!!  More than 80 % of people exhibit ADD  symptoms when consuming red dye. There are many more substances that might cause similar problems, but each individual is different.  They work like allergies.

Austin Holistic Healing Center | Natural Hormone Replacement …
http://www.centerforhealthandhealing.org › … › Detox › Gluten intolerance (Run by Dr. Ted Edwards MD and Dr. Teri Beim, ND)
If you need a very knowledgeable pharmacist, see Tom Schnorr, Apothecary Shoppe, Duval

Autism; ADD/ADHD; G.I.Issues For Kids; … Why should I consider alternative health medicine? … Wellness clinic Services at our Austin location include:

Linda Classen is the educator’s most educated about the field. She knows about the real, if possibly rare, brain dysfunction and how to train teachers and how to deal with public school teachers.

Feingold diet, although much poo-poo-ed does work form many people and has the advantage of a scientific trial for each person. There is no harm in trying and perhaps a great deal of help, so I do not understand the poo-poo.

(There is a lot of disinformation out there.  I urge you to consider  1) the poo-ppo-er’s pecuniary interest 2) real claims of real science rather than standard practice of traditional medicine and 3) a reasonable protocol which should always start with basic health and wellness, and thus education. Anyway, a book is cheaper than a drug.  Start there.)
There are educational resources at People’s Pharmacy

August 8, 2013 at 10:08 pm 1 comment

Do you do assessments in your center?

Recently, while doing sales calling, I was told by a young woman answering the phone at a licensed childcare center, “Oh, we don’t do assessments here.” What she probably meant was that in their childcare center, like most others, there will be no formal grades, nor will there be diagnoses. However, it is not yet time to simply dismiss the consideration of “asssessments” because there ARE assessments — I hope. Therefore we ought to consider how well we are doing them. No wonder it is a popular seminar topic. It should be!

Most centers report on milestones that the children are achieving. Many of the better centers observe where the child is during the early part of the school year and report on it in the Spring. In this way the parents can see the progress the child is making and how the center experience is contributing to that. However, it is also useful for the director to notice how well her staff is doing. She might notice that in one class many of the children are behind or ahead in an area. This suggests that the teaching strategy was the cause. There might be an effort to share the wisdom.

All experienced teachers also can not help but notice when child is not within normal limits. Regularized assessment, whether a milestone, a criteria based, or a norm based assessment, is often a good step to better understanding what is happening. Regularized observations and reports to parents are not only professional but also reduce anxiety everyone feels, if communications have been regular and good all along.

In some cases a referral to a health or wellness professional is called for. Other disciplines have more extensive kinds of norm based assessments. If the results are understood by the parents and educators, they may serve as guides for improved educational services.

And of course, there are regular performance reviews. These are assessments. And there may even be exit surveys so the center can find out what parents are un/happy about. This is an assessment. Indeed, checking the playground daily before the children arrive and noticing if the floor were vacuumed — all these are assessments.

We do have assessments. The important thing is to pick the right kind and do them in the right way. And do them and use them as a team, serving the child.

Sometimes this happens better than other times. We want to be on the better side, don’t we? Recently a Mensa member wrote in about her favorite teacher. Her second grade teacher was the first to realize that she was not mentally challenged, but really deaf. It was not until that teacher took a little extra time with this girl did she get a hearing aid. Today that little girl is in a club for geniuses. She might, however, have stayed in a class for mentally challenged children, deprived of the life she could have had, simply because no one had taken the time to realize that what she needed was a hearing aid.

So, yes, you have assessments in your center. They can not be dismissed. What we need to do is to be sure we are using them in an accurate and helpful way: not as death knells, but as direction to the team.

What kind do you use in your center?

February 18, 2013 at 9:35 pm 2 comments

What Does it Take to Be a Great Educator?

What does it take to be a great educator? Better formal training? Natural talent? A love for children? Kindness? Moral excellence in order to think of the children’s needs and the family’s needs and the center’s needs before one’s own? Or faith for a child to achieve academic excellence? Or what? How do you rate these?

January 9, 2013 at 4:05 pm 1 comment

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What People are Saying

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Sharon’s books

The Government is not a Village. Dialogs across boundaries, busts myths, reveals real science. Offers a positive way forward in early education policy. Go to www.lulu.com or www.thegovernmentisnotavillage.com Swim with the Dolphins, not with the Sharks Sharon's classic book on conflict reduction available at www.amazon.com This is instrumental music, great for calming and focusing. I recommend it for your classroom. WHOLETONES

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