“Lazy” is a four letter word. Don’t use it in front of children

I’ve been called lazy a whole lot in my life, almost always by teachers who had no clue.  Sometimes they used the euphemism “does not apply himself”. The best teacher who ever taught me, on the other hand, said I tried harder than almost anyone. But “lazy” is a four letter word. It should never […]

Figuring out how we learn best: Don’t change the peg, change the hole!

There is an old saying that “a square peg won’t fit in a round hole”. Yet much of education, especially for those of us with learning disabilities, seems to consist of trying to force a square peg into a round hole. But can we change the hole?

Accommodations: Who are they acccommodating?

In this post I discussed accommodations at school; in this one – accommodations at work; in a future post I will discuss accommodations at home. But today, I want to discuss a more general question: Who are they accommodating?

Accommodations at school

In a recent post I discussed accommodations at work. Now, I’ll discuss the much larger topic of accommodations at school. Larger, at least, because more has been written about it.

Academic, social or behavioral? Can they be separated?

School age children with learning disabilities often have difficulties. Sometimes, people (teachers, parents, administrators, psychologists, the kids themselves) try to divide the problems into academic, social and behavioral.  Maybe this is sometimes useful, but often, it’s a false division. All three play into each other in a sort of vicious circle; and the start of […]

Hey teacher! Don’t freak out!

In an earlier post, I suggested that kids should not freak out. Now, I give the same advice to teachers (and I will give the same advice to parents, too). So, you’re teaching. Good for you. Teachers are wonderful; the vast majority work very hard and care a lot about the kids they work with.  […]

How to decrease agitation for (some) NLD students

You’re teaching. One of your students, you think, has nonverbal learning disabilities. He’s getting upset. With other kids, you have lots of tools in your arsenal; things you know by instinct or from training or from other teachers. But, with this kid, some of those tools don’t seem to work.. What might work?

Ways for teachers (or anyone!) to support communication with NVLD students

Suppose you are  a teacher and you have a kid in your class who has nonverbal learning disability (NVLD). Like nearly all teachers, you want what is best for your students. You want to help. But sometimes communication with that NVLD kid just doesn’t seem to work. What might you try?

Getting kids to accept accommodations

In my history, accommodations were never an issue. I wasn’t offered any. But these days things are different. Many children get accommodations. But some refuse to take what is offered. They don’t want to appear different. Or they view it as cheating. I’ve got some thoughts on getting kids to accept accommodations.

Book review: Cloud Chaser by Peter Riffle

I got to hear Peter Riffle speak at the New Jersey LDA meeting. I also bought his book The Cloud Chaser. If you are a teacher in special education, especially if you are relatively new in the field or need some inspiration, this could be a good book for you to read.