Is this 2E? Where to turn to for guidance? - Mothering Forums

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#1 of 17 Old 06-14-2010, 05:28 AM - Thread Starter
 
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We have DD's numbers back from the WISC and it looks to me like they are highlighting for us a potential issue that we've wondered about. She qualifies for the local gifted program, but her perceptual reasoning scores seem wildly different (lower by 28 pts) than her verbal scores.

So with this in hand, I was doing a search for information here and came upon an old thread - nearly four years old - that I had started regarding DD having some sensory issues. We did some work on sensory issues at the time, and over time things seemed to get better. She stopped chewing on her clothes and started leaving off the second and third layers of clothing. And her panic regarding things like vacuums and blenders seemed to diminish. None of this has completely disappeared, but they are greatly diminished.

Now I'm starting to think that maybe there is more sensory work to be done, but perhaps in a different realm. With the WISC scores in hand, I'm wondering if she might be experiencing some significant visual/spatial challenges. From sorting the pieces to determining a strategy to orienting pieces, she is very easily overwhelmed by jigsaw puzzles. Her ability to draw, color and cut seems quite delayed. And she can be very easily visually overwhelmed. I've never even considered the "Where's Waldo" books. She gives up on searching kinds of activities almost immediately. She is very reluctant to attempt any time-sensitive visual/motor challenges like online games. And yet the WISC rated her ability to concentrate as superior.

I should mention that although we have signed up for a slot in the gifted program, I am not entirely convinced it's the path we'll take in the fall. We've been homeschooling up to now. But whether or not the school district is involved, I'd still like to figure out if there's something I can do to help my daughter. This is a new path for us. Any advice on where to start?
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#2 of 17 Old 06-14-2010, 11:51 AM
 
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Originally Posted by insahmniak View Post
We have DD's numbers back from the WISC and it looks to me like they are highlighting for us a potential issue that we've wondered about. She qualifies for the local gifted program, but her perceptual reasoning scores seem wildly different (lower by 28 pts) than her verbal scores.

So with this in hand, I was doing a search for information here and came upon an old thread - nearly four years old - that I had started regarding DD having some sensory issues. We did some work on sensory issues at the time, and over time things seemed to get better. She stopped chewing on her clothes and started leaving off the second and third layers of clothing. And her panic regarding things like vacuums and blenders seemed to diminish. None of this has completely disappeared, but they are greatly diminished.

Now I'm starting to think that maybe there is more sensory work to be done, but perhaps in a different realm. With the WISC scores in hand, I'm wondering if she might be experiencing some significant visual/spatial challenges. From sorting the pieces to determining a strategy to orienting pieces, she is very easily overwhelmed by jigsaw puzzles. Her ability to draw, color and cut seems quite delayed. And she can be very easily visually overwhelmed. I've never even considered the "Where's Waldo" books. She gives up on searching kinds of activities almost immediately. She is very reluctant to attempt any time-sensitive visual/motor challenges like online games. And yet the WISC rated her ability to concentrate as superior.

I should mention that although we have signed up for a slot in the gifted program, I am not entirely convinced it's the path we'll take in the fall. We've been homeschooling up to now. But whether or not the school district is involved, I'd still like to figure out if there's something I can do to help my daughter. This is a new path for us. Any advice on where to start?
That 28 point difference is almost two standard deviations difference between the two scores. Two standard deviations is about the point that you might want to take a look at whether a gifted kid has a learning disability.

My oldest is 2E. He has high visual spatial and performance IQ scores, and lower verbal IQ scores. (His official diagnosis is mixed expressive receptive language disorder.) The spread on his Iowa basics was worse than that.

We had him assessed by a psychologist who specializes in gifted kids with LDs. We got the name of a psychologist from our local gifted council. She pegged his problem and gave us good advice on what to do. (We're seeing a speech therapist.) She also assessed him for ASD, ADHD, OCD, etc. and ruled those conditions out.

We've been in speech therapy for almost a year, and it's greatly helping.

I'm sure a psychologist who specializes in gifted and LD would have some very useful suggestions for you.
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#3 of 17 Old 06-14-2010, 12:50 PM
 
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FWIW, ds1 has a 25 pt spread between his highest and lowest (processing speed). I've been told that processing score is not so impt, esp since his is still above average, but it did make sense after we found out about his dyslexic tendencies and vision processing difficulties half a year after the testing.

In fact, and I'm embarrassed to say this, if I didn't know his score, I probably wouldn't have suspected so early on that he genuinely is struggling with the written word. I put it down to lack of tenacity, fear of failure etc. Never would I have imagined that the words were shifting around on a page and he didn't tell anyone because he thought it was normal! After more checks and therapists, I now have a much better understanding of my little guy, how he works and what help he needs.
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#4 of 17 Old 06-14-2010, 06:30 PM
 
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Originally Posted by insahmniak View Post
We have DD's numbers back from the WISC and it looks to me like they are highlighting for us a potential issue that we've wondered about. She qualifies for the local gifted program, but her perceptual reasoning scores seem wildly different (lower by 28 pts) than her verbal scores.
Was it just the WISC that they used?

I ask because I was wondering about this exact same issue for ds after the tangram unit from hell this spring. He was completely incapable of even knowing where to begin with these.

His verbal scores are off the charts, and his maths are "just" above average (ranging from 70th to 85th percentiles). I chalked it up to more talent in verbal skills than math + bad math instruction in 2nd grade (his computation scores were the lowest, and his understanding of the concepts were the highest). But I'm wondering if he really has a visual-spatial deficit.

FWIW, our ds also had sensory issues which we addressed with OT. One of the areas that was of major concern when he was evaluated at age 5 was "Visual Motor Integration". The OT said she couldn't tell if it was a visual perception issue or a motor issue -- working on fine motor skills brought his scores up into the typical range, so I assumed it was motor. I wonder if there could be a visual perceptual issue too?

Since your dd had sensory issues, it might be worth checking that aspect of her development a bit more.

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Originally Posted by insahmniak View Post
she is very easily overwhelmed by jigsaw puzzles. Her ability to draw, color and cut seems quite delayed. And she can be very easily visually overwhelmed. I've never even considered the "Where's Waldo" books. She gives up on searching kinds of activities almost immediately.
Wow, that sounds so much like ds! He also never every wants to build with legos or do other similar things.

My question for others is: If you've got deficits in visual spatial reasoning, how much difficulty does that cause in school and/or later life? It's pretty clear ds isn't going to be an architect or a mechanical engineer, so should we care?

Lynnteapot2.GIF, academicreading.gif,geek.gif wife, WOHM  to T jog.gif(4/01) and M whistling.gif (5/04)
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#5 of 17 Old 06-14-2010, 07:36 PM
 
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Wow, that sounds so much like ds! He also never every wants to build with legos or do other similar things.
This is why I subbed to this thread. It sounds so much like DD too.

grateful Mama to DD May '06 and DS May '09
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#6 of 17 Old 06-14-2010, 10:50 PM
 
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This article is a few years old, but it may have some useful info for you. I, too, have contemplated 2e with one of my girls and am at a point right now where I am thinking that she may not be 2e or that we will never know for sure.

We had one practicioner tell us that she had ADHD and dyslexia based upon divergent IQ subtests and erratic achievement tests. I did some research on "profile analysis" and generally found that it is not well supported empirically. The above linked article definitely wasn't in favor of using divergent WISC subtests to dx a LD. A second expert told us that dd definitely didn't have either ADHD or dyslexia. It is frustrating when different experts disagree so significantly.
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#7 of 17 Old 06-15-2010, 12:37 AM
 
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Have you had her eyes checked by a developmental optometrist?

DS scored 99.7 VS on his SB5, yet hates puzzles. He has vision issues (although they're largely resolved) and SPD. He loves look and find books, but many other classic VS things put him off. There is definitely some other, as yet unidentified, perceptual thing going on with him.

We're retesting this summer with a more experienced psych and I'm hoping it will reveal more of his story.

Have you looked at the Eides information?

Mom to a teenager and a middle schooler.

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#8 of 17 Old 06-15-2010, 12:21 PM
 
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I really believe that gifted kids should only be assessed for LD issues by someone who has experience with gifted/LD issues because of the issues ChristaN and deminc mentioned.

Someone with experience with diagnosing gifted kids can sort out what to be concerned about.
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#9 of 17 Old 06-15-2010, 12:32 PM
 
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The first person who told us that dd was 2e hadn't even met dd, but she was with a well know gifted assessment center. She was going totally off of test scores on paper. The second person who told us that she was not was a psych who tested her and who had a lot of experience with LD, but probably not so much with gifted.
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#10 of 17 Old 06-16-2010, 02:10 AM - Thread Starter
 
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Thank you for the replies. It's nice to find people who've been there and get a wide range of perspectives.

I've been chatting recently with another mom who has a child with special needs and asked her about how to go about getting guidance. She suggested not going the private/medical route because you run the risk of getting something listed in a medical file that then can be considered a pre-existing condition. By doing evaluations through the school district it's easier to avoid that. Any thoughts on that?

I'm not sure what kind of help I can get through the school district, or even who to talk to first. There's the school psychologist who tested her - perhaps I could track him down.

LynnS6 - The test was the WISC IV. She also has done achievement testing but I haven't seen those results.

The more I think about it the more I'm starting to think it may be more than quirks. She has always had a tremendous capacity to concentrate. She's played violin for nearly 4 years and has done remarkably well. You would think with the kind of focus it takes to practice and learn this kind of skill that she'd have the ability to tackle a jigsaw puzzle. But even easy puzzles frustrate her. She gives up almost before she gets started. Given what else I know about her, that response never made sense to me.

I'm curious about visual processing testing. It seems there are two possible tracks: OT and optometry. joensally can you tell me about your experience with visual optometry? Anyone else here work with OT on visual information processing? Look at what I just found.
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#11 of 17 Old 06-16-2010, 02:56 PM
 
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Re. the private route vs. the school route

We went the private route for treatment and assessment. I was more worried about fighting with a school district than I was about fighting with an insurance company re. pre-existing conditions.

If your child has a learning disability, your insurance probably doesn't cover any treatment or therapy anyway. Most don't, which makes the issue whether a condition is pre-existing besides the point. You should check your policy. If you can't understand the language, call customer service and ask.

If it is covered, pre-existing conditions for children are of limited importance because of Health Care Reform.

http://www.csmonitor.com/USA/Politic...ing-conditions

I don't trust the special education services/gifted services in my local school district. I've seen too many problems with them, in my family and in my friends' families. It's made me leery of telling a school anything. My kids are in private school and I wanted control over the diagnosis process, I went the private route. It was my decision about what to tell our private school and when to tell them.

(Before someone tells me how unfair I am to public schools, let me say that I investigated our public school. The gifted education coordinator for our school district told me off the record that the school district really didn't have an appropriate placement for my son and that if he was happy in our private school, and learning, he'd be better off staying there after preschool.)
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#12 of 17 Old 06-19-2010, 01:07 PM
 
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http://www.covd.org/

OP, I'm going to second the suggestion that you have your DD checked out by a developmental optometrist. I have a child with an eye turn and tracking/teaming issues. He has made a lot of progress with a great vision therapist. You can find a covd certified doc at the above link. An opthamologist or "regular" optometrist will not do the same extensive testing (experience talking here) as a vision therapist.

Some people will tell you that vision therapy is hooey. My take on it is that eye teaming and tracking are motor skills that can be practiced and learned just like any other.

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#13 of 17 Old 06-21-2010, 08:55 AM
 
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I found this research article yesterday, and thought it might be interesting for the OP and some of the posters on this thread:
"Learning Difficulties May Be Centred in the Eye, Not the Brain"
http://www.sciencedaily.com/releases...0614093133.htm

It is very possible to have excellent (gifted) visual spatial abilities, but also have deficits at the same time. The ability to compensate will come into play here - some kids can compensate well, at least for awhile, and others can't. And even if a child does figure out a way to compensate, compensation doesn't always work in all situations. This can lead to inconsistent test scores and abilities. Linda Silverman's book, "Upside-Down Brilliance," has a great chapter on being a visual spatial learner with deficits and discusses assessing 2E kids. The book is out of print, but you can sometimes find it on amazon or at your library.

http://www.amazon.com/Upside-Down-Br...7121495&sr=1-1

Silverman also has a few articles on her website - the book is more comprehensive:

http://www.visualspatial.org/Kids/ex...l_children.htm

Laura - Mom to ds (10) and dd (7) "Time stands still best in moments that look suspiciously like ordinary life." Brian Andreas.

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#14 of 17 Old 06-21-2010, 08:58 AM
 
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http://www.covd.org/

Some people will tell you that vision therapy is hooey. My take on it is that eye teaming and tracking are motor skills that can be practiced and learned just like any other.
We did vision therapy with ds -- it was the best money that we ever spent. I wish he had been dx'd much sooner.

Laura - Mom to ds (10) and dd (7) "Time stands still best in moments that look suspiciously like ordinary life." Brian Andreas.

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#15 of 17 Old 06-22-2010, 03:44 PM
 
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The more I think about it the more I'm starting to think it may be more than quirks. She has always had a tremendous capacity to concentrate. She's played violin for nearly 4 years and has done remarkably well. You would think with the kind of focus it takes to practice and learn this kind of skill that she'd have the ability to tackle a jigsaw puzzle. But even easy puzzles frustrate her. She gives up almost before she gets started. Given what else I know about her, that response never made sense to me.

I'm curious about visual processing testing. It seems there are two possible tracks: OT and optometry. joensally can you tell me about your experience with visual optometry? Anyone else here work with OT on visual information processing? Look at what I just found.
Your first paragraph is a real indicator that something complicated and subtle may be going on for her.

We didn't do vision therapy as it was cost prohibitive for us and we were doing a whole bunch of other therapies/interventions and one little kid and his mother can only take on so many things at once . We have a very good dev opt who has an OT in his practice. He narrowed down exactly what was happening and we had reading glasses with prisms that DS very occasionally wears. We have been working hard on gross motor issues and I think that's helped.

We're doing a very thorough psych ed this summer which will include multiple other tests/inventories beyond IQ/achievement, and it will be informed by the PT, OT and dev opt assessments we've had done. I'm really hoping that this will narrow down where things are happening as DS has vision issues, gross motor issues, apparently average fine motor skills but written output disorder, sensory issues...

Have you read the Eides or seen their website? Very interesting info.

Mom to a teenager and a middle schooler.

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#16 of 17 Old 06-30-2010, 03:40 AM - Thread Starter
 
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I wanted to post and update that I just picked up the Eides book from the library today, and I'm reading the vision section. I'm curious and would love to do some kind of casual, at-home assessment. We just don't have funds to get involved with vision therapy so I'm reluctant to make an appointment. But I think an informal kind of assessment might be interesting.

She did two pieces of coloring today, on her own and of her own accord, and later she showed them to me proudly. Honestly they looked as though they could have easily been done by a 2 year old. I asked her about filling things in completely...."Do you ever feel like doing that?" Her reply was that it wasn't as if she didn't try, but that she just got lazy and gave up after a while. So now I'm pretty curious how much of this is a possible visual-motor issue and what's just a matter of carelessness. What I don't understand is why she would show it to me with such pride if she really was feeling careless. But on the surface it does look like carelessness.

Off to read the book....
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#17 of 17 Old 06-30-2010, 01:00 PM
 
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Originally Posted by insahmniak View Post
I wanted to post and update that I just picked up the Eides book from the library today, and I'm reading the vision section. I'm curious and would love to do some kind of casual, at-home assessment. We just don't have funds to get involved with vision therapy so I'm reluctant to make an appointment. But I think an informal kind of assessment might be interesting.

She did two pieces of coloring today, on her own and of her own accord, and later she showed them to me proudly. Honestly they looked as though they could have easily been done by a 2 year old. I asked her about filling things in completely...."Do you ever feel like doing that?" Her reply was that it wasn't as if she didn't try, but that she just got lazy and gave up after a while. So now I'm pretty curious how much of this is a possible visual-motor issue and what's just a matter of carelessness. What I don't understand is why she would show it to me with such pride if she really was feeling careless. But on the surface it does look like carelessness.

Off to read the book....
Ah...carelessness can be a behavioural response to being over-challenged. This is tough stuff to tease out. Maybe she did work as hard as she was ready to at that point and liked the result of her effort, but on questioning started to doubt it and/or adopted your vocabulary. A child can't always tease out the difference between all they were capable of (owning their limitation) and a personal failing (it's easier to cope with "lazy" than "incapable"), and they'll often adopt the viewpoint of a trusted adult to explain results.

ETA: If your child is 2E, it is very different. Think of it as extreme asynchrony - you've got the usual gifted asynchrony, but the boundaries of that are further stretched to include their specific challenges. We struggle with school staff when they first get to know DS because they don't realize that he's struggling with his self-perceptions differently than many boys of 7 and that the way they address things with him can have unintended consequences.

Mom to a teenager and a middle schooler.

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