Waldorf education and dyslexia - UPDATE Post #23 - Page 2 - Mothering Forums

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#31 of 39 Old 01-06-2012, 04:45 AM - Thread Starter
 
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Originally Posted by Fran222 View Post

 I think like you that I also do not appreciate the approach taken to reading issues by many in our school.  I also was firm with our teacher, letting her know that I considered it a medical diagnosis, that I had made what I considered to be a medical decision about how to '"treat" it, and they are also, not without complaining a little, letting our private tutor pull him out of class for tutoring.  I also have refused BrainGyym and any other movement type therapies, as well as cranial-sacral therapy.  So far, so good. I think I have an understanding with our teacher. 

My DH's whole family is dyslexic to varying degrees. DH is mildly dyslexic as is his  mother, while a few cousins are extremely dyslexic and still struggle as adults with reading. So it's very clearly genetic and a "medical" issue to us. Although I've been relatively open to some alternative approaches (a moderated Davis method for DS' spelling has helped him a lot), two months of whatever it was they had DS doing in school (jumping around and singing verses, which he hated!), showed us that we really had to bring in a tutor with actual qualifications to help him. And she has - a lot.

 

It was a pity the special needs coordinator's nose was out of joint about it, but . . . yeah . . .  helping our son with his reading was the most important thing to us -- not her feelings!
 

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Originally Posted by karne View Post

I have some experience here, and want to chime in and say that if you are doing tutoring for reading/language based issues, it is really imperative that this occur on a very set schedule, ideally every day, if you can make that happen.  My child was/is dyslexic and we had curative eurythmy, chanting Steiner verses, lit candles, painting, Brain Gym, etc.....on and on, all obviously not remotely helpful, and expensive to boot.  Solid reading tutoring, using a proven method such as Orton Gillingham, is the best bet.  The daily piece goes against the block scheduling of waldorf grades, but it is essential.  I would pay attention to math and handwriting as well.

 

We have a very happy ending...our child is an excellent student, and an excellent reader.

You made me gigle with the candles, etc.

 

DS' tutoring occurs weekly at the same time, though not daily as there's no way we could afford that. We practice with him daily, however. Math is fine and he excels in it. His handwriting is dreadful, which is something the tutor is also working with him on.

 

I'd be interested in hearing more about what worked for your child, Karne. I'm not in the US so DS isn't learning to read in English at the moment, but perhaps some of the methods/approaches are available here.

 

Also, if Imm remembering correctly, Karne, you ended up leaving the Waldorf school (or am I confusing you with someone else?). Obviously, don't discuss it if you're not comfortable with it (or PM me), but I was wondering what happened? We're not thinking of leaving the school because DS is so happy and (knock on wood) they are working with us and have accepted us bringing in our own tutor. Because we're in Europe, the school works more like a Waldorf charter would in the US as there's strong government oversight and standards, but I'm still interested in knowing what we might want to look out for with a dyslexic child and the Waldorf appraoch.

 


 

 

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#32 of 39 Old 01-06-2012, 11:32 AM
 
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We are also pursing a very conventional course at this point.  A very informative and great read for all of us Moms of dyslexics is Overcoming Dyslexia by Sally Shaywitz.  Thanks for sharing that your child is a great reader now. Fran

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#33 of 39 Old 01-08-2012, 03:56 PM
 
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Originally Posted by karne View Post

I have some experience here, and want to chime in and say that if you are doing tutoring for reading/language based issues, it is really imperative that this occur on a very set schedule, ideally every day, if you can make that happen.  My child was/is dyslexic and we had curative eurythmy, chanting Steiner verses, lit candles, painting, Brain Gym, etc.....on and on, all obviously not remotely helpful, and expensive to boot.  Solid reading tutoring, using a proven method such as Orton Gillingham, is the best bet.  The daily piece goes against the block scheduling of waldorf grades, but it is essential.  I would pay attention to math and handwriting as well.

 

We have a very happy ending...our child is an excellent student, and an excellent reader.



We did not have as extensive or negative experience with Waldorf and ds's dyslexia because he only went for preschool.  Even so, when he was in early elementary, dd was still at the Waldorf school and I talked with dd teacher because she had previously been a reading teacher.  She told me that as soon as he learned how to tie his shoes, he would forge the right pathways in his brain for reading.  How I wish that were true.  

 

I think Waldorf is a great school, but I think it is easier to miss dyslexics because they are so relaxed about kids developing later.  We do not have Waldorf elementary available in our area.  I think the OP is right to keep pursuing dx and additional services for reading and writing.  I am still learning about dyslexia (thanks to experience and parts of the Sally Shaywitz book)- but one thing I found is that few teachers here in public or private schools really understand it.  I asked in 2nd grade when ds did lots of letter reversal, and was told that is normal for all kids even at that age- ok. She did not think we should get him tested even though he was struggling with reading and did not really write.   In fact very few dyslexics reverse letters, so that is not a good measure for evaluation.  He has the more "classic" characteristics, like creative, very verbal with large vocabulary and comprehension, makes odd mistakes with similar sounding words, can not sound out words very well, has hard to read handwriting and is slow, reads slow but accurate... We do not have family members with dyslexia, but I there is a strong genetic link for many dyslexics.  

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#34 of 39 Old 01-09-2012, 12:22 PM
 
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Sally Shaywitz's book is excellent, as is the Eides website, esp. if you have a learner who is gifted, and may have an LD.  This is actually quite common with dyslexia, and I have certainly seen it in our situation.

 

The above poster is correct-dyslexia, which is not a frequently used term anymore, or at least really tends to function as an umbrella term, is incredibly complex, and very often it is amenable to appropriate and early intervention.  This includes direct, explicit, instruction.  

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#35 of 39 Old 01-17-2012, 01:07 PM
 
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Hi there. I know you've already received loads of helpful ideas and advice but I just wanted to say that for me, personally, crafts helped me learn about my dyslexia and therefore how to work with it. Weaving and working with positive and negative space activities [like drawing a picture of the negative space around a chair, instead of drawing a chair] is a great mental exercise. It helps you think in opposites and understand how to work with your own dyslexic mind versus excelling in spite of it.

 

Good luck to you!

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#36 of 39 Old 01-18-2012, 01:38 PM
 
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Originally Posted by elefante View Post

Hi there. I know you've already received loads of helpful ideas and advice but I just wanted to say that for me, personally, crafts helped me learn about my dyslexia and therefore how to work with it. Weaving and working with positive and negative space activities [like drawing a picture of the negative space around a chair, instead of drawing a chair] is a great mental exercise. It helps you think in opposites and understand how to work with your own dyslexic mind versus excelling in spite of it.

 

Good luck to you!



Betty Edwards has a great book, Drawing from the Right Side of the Brain, and she has exercised that include drawing negative space.  It is a great activity for developing understanding of space.  My understanding is that dyslexics are very good at right brain activities and they tend to read with just the right hemisphere as opposed to both like the typical reader.   This is why they tend to be slower because they see the word as a picture instead of a series of symbols representing sounds. (Right brain processes in holistic pictures and left brain is the verbal domain).  It is also why it is easier to read to oneself silently then aloud because it does not require speech- the left side.  I think a multi sensory approach works, if it is conjunction with reading and not separate.  So, students tracing letters with fingers as they learn sounds would be more helpful to learn to read.  Ds went to an OT for his issues with handwriting and she tried to work with a multi-sensory approach. He only had limited success, but he ran out of sessions with the OT last summer and only now with the new year can we look into getting another referral.  

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#37 of 39 Old 01-23-2012, 01:39 PM
 
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I'll definitely look into that book. Thanks.

Good luck in working with your son. I love my brain and do not feel at all at a disadvantage. But understanding the way you work and acknowledging the differences has made my life much easier. :)
 

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Originally Posted by melissa17s View Post



Betty Edwards has a great book, Drawing from the Right Side of the Brain, and she has exercised that include drawing negative space.  It is a great activity for developing understanding of space.  My understanding is that dyslexics are very good at right brain activities and they tend to read with just the right hemisphere as opposed to both like the typical reader.   This is why they tend to be slower because they see the word as a picture instead of a series of symbols representing sounds. (Right brain processes in holistic pictures and left brain is the verbal domain).  It is also why it is easier to read to oneself silently then aloud because it does not require speech- the left side.  I think a multi sensory approach works, if it is conjunction with reading and not separate.  So, students tracing letters with fingers as they learn sounds would be more helpful to learn to read.  Ds went to an OT for his issues with handwriting and she tried to work with a multi-sensory approach. He only had limited success, but he ran out of sessions with the OT last summer and only now with the new year can we look into getting another referral.  



 

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#38 of 39 Old 08-05-2012, 10:13 AM
 
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Hi, it was interesting reading your post especially being a proffessional. I have three sons, two with Dyscalculia and one with dyslexia. We are planning a move to Canada and enrolling the boys in a Waldorf school. I know so little about it all but from what I have read it sounds like such a terrific approach to learning?
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#39 of 39 Old 07-27-2013, 06:25 AM
 
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My name is Christy and I have a son with dyslexia.  Are you still on this email?  I had some questions about Enki and dyslexia.

Christy

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