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Should we wait on reading and math for now?

584 Views 8 Replies 9 Participants Last post by  NoHiddenFees
We had some testing done when my son was 5 and it showed that he has a visual processing delay and "emerging dyslexic tendencies." He's 7 now and in first grade, and we just found out last week that he has moderate to
severe convergence insufficiency. He needs about 10-15 sessions of
vision therapy. We're having a re-evaluation about the visual processing
in May to see if the actual processing of what he sees is still delayed.

He says that sometimes the letters on a page wiggle or float around.
He gets frustrated easily with close work and hates math especially.
He can sound out words pretty well and has about 80 sight words
memorized, but that hasn't translated into much reading by himself.

I don't know how this should influence the rest of our school year.
Should I wait on the more close-work focused stuff until after the
vision therapy so that we're only dealing with the processing problem?

This is my first year to homeschool him, so I really don't know what to
do. We've been doing a pretty relaxed schedule this year--mainly
focusing on the 3 Rs and reading lots of books aloud about subjects of interest.
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I would wait on close-focus stuff, myself. But there's plenty of non-visual work you could do on math (skip-counting, mental math, oral drill, guessing games and all sorts of other math games) ... and you could probably find lots of interesting games to do for reading that wouldn't involve visual work as well... rhyming games, alliteration practice, parts of speech, reading aloud for vocabulary and comprehension, etc.).

Should I wait on the more close-work focused stuff until after the
vision therapy so that we're only dealing with the processing problem?
I would. My son had vision therapy too, by the way - worked wonders.

Things go so much faster and easier when everything's in good operating condition (and, of course, when the child's old enough and developmentally ready, and interested); so it's not as if anything will be lost. He's still very young anyway.

And you could even begin to gradually incorporate casual, non-book, math in funner ways that work even better in the long run, I think... There are lots of ideas in some of the articles in this page:
Go Figure!

And getting away from so much of the 3Rs opens up more time and energy for things a seven year old boy could really enjoy - like science experiments, learning magic tricks, playing games, watching videos, and such... So it will all work out fine.

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I'd stick with reading aloud and finding fun stuff for him to do- such as nature walks, science experiements, etc. Reading and math will 'click" when he's ready, and starting them too soon just leads to frustration- ITA with Lillian that you're not going to "lose" any time by waiting with those two items. If you are going to work on reading, I'd get some kind of device for putting the words, really big, on a screen or the wall or something, so he's just focused on learning the letters and words, not struggling with his vision simultaneously. For now, though, I think the best thing would be books on tape, and/or you reading to him, so he can continue to enjoy books and literature without feeling like reading is a huge struggle.
Yes, I'd wait. I'd let him do whatever he was comfortable doing and find alternate ways for him to learn what interests him. You could read aloud to him, he could listen to books on tape. If he likes to write, maybe he'd prefer to dictate stories rather than to write them down himself. Or perhaps typing is easier or a voice recognition program? There are lots of ways to play with numbers and mathematical concepts that don't include working math problems on a page.

I'd play to his strengths.
I'd wait on anything to do with having him read to you, or doing any worksheets etc But of course, I'd read to him, sing songs, read poetry, do ryming words for fun, memorize silly poetry (not in a formal way-- just read and read and eventually they know it), and let him dicate his own poems & stories to you.

He can help set the table, cook, shop, play board games, and all the other 'stuff' people do in the real world of math.

For motor development (and fun) he can work with paint and chalk etc etc at an easel. Nothing formal--just have paints and other items available to him. My kids, even my big kids, like to use dough to spell their names. Pretzel dough is extra fun for mine. Make good packable snacks, too. lol
I'll join the chorus and say that "waiting" is okay. But you aren't really "waiting," but continuing with learning without having read marks on paper. Lots of math can be done orally, and I have always been jealous of people who could do math in their heads. I think it would be a great foundation to learn math orally and with manipulatives and skip the problems on paper for awhile. You could also just forget about math instruction entirely for awhile, too, if you didn't want to do things orally. Just because he doesn't do math now doesn't mean he won't catch up later. (Plus everday living involves math, of course.)

Same with reading. There is no reason he has to read by any certain age, but that doesn't mean he isn't learning to read by other methods. I would read aloud to him as much as the two of you enjoy. HEARING good language builds vocabulary which in turn will help with reading when the time comes. Talking, having all sorts of experiences, listening...all that adds up to reading eventually when he's ready for it.
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Subbing because I think my 5 y.o. DD has a visual processing delay. Trying to figure what to do. Thank you for this thread.

Some math programs have teacher's manuals, but no texts and can be done almost entirely orally. Right Start Level B and much of Level C (except the drawing parts of geometry, which can be postponed) fall into this category. Some reading of numbers is involved, but they are large enough on the manipulatives they might not post a problem. Written problems can be worked on a white or chalk board.
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