As the temperature drops, the world of learning disabilities (LD) is heating up. But don’t worry if you haven’t had time to keep up with the news. LD Insights’ news roundup is here with the latest on LD from newspapers and the Web. In this edition, a major celebrity exposes his struggle with dyslexia, parents stand up for their children with LD in a Washington school district, LD experts raise questions about online learning, and schools look to the LD world for guidance in teaching writing. No matter what stage of the LD journey you’re in, you won’t want to miss these articles.
Exclusive Video Interview: Steven Spielberg on his Dyslexia (Friends of Quinn) Legendary movie director Steven Spielberg has for the first time opened up about his struggle with dyslexia in this interview with LD website Friends of Quinn. Spielberg, who was officially diagnosed with dyslexia only a few years ago, discusses how he learned to deal with his LD in creative ways and how filmmaking helped him escape the pain he felt from struggling with academics and bullies at school. If LD is a part of your life, you have to check out Spielberg’s inspiring words.
District Committed to All Kinds of Learners (Mercer Island Reporter) Parents wield great power when they come together to advocate for kids with LD and other special learning needs. On Mercer Island, Washington, parents have organized a group advocating for their children with LD in the school system. The school district has listened and implemented a number of changes to better meet the needs of struggling learners. Read this article from the Mercer Island Reporter for more on the difference these dedicated parents have made.
Concerning Participation in Online Learning (Center for Online Learning and Students with Learning Disabilities) Online learning is heating up as more students of all ages sign onto the Internet to take courses. A new research group, the Center for Online Learning and Students with Learning Disabilities, is bringing together some of the nation’s top experts to examine approaches to online learning for students with LD. While the group believes that online learning holds potential for all students, a new letter from the group’s Principal Investigators (including NCLD’s Professional Advisory Board Chairman, Don Deshler, brings up a number of concerns regarding online learning for students with LD. If you are considering online learning for your child now or in the future, be sure to check out this letter for questions you should ask before enrolling.
The Writing Revolution (The Atlantic) Writing can be a major stumbling block for students with LD and other struggling learners. The curriculum of many American schools has only contributed to the problem: many schools no longer explicitly teach the “how tos” of writing. Educators are recognizing that this is a serious issue and that lack of writing proficiency is hurting students in all subject areas. This article from The Atlantic chronicles one school’s experiment with implementing an explicit, comprehensive writing program across the curriculum. This curriculum, originally developed for students with LD, has produced great results at the profiled school and may hold promise for education reform throughout the nation.