Dr. Kari Miller was recently a guest on The Total Education BlogTalkRadio show. She participated in a round table discussion with Dr. Shellie Hipsky author of “Mentoring Magic”, hosted by Neil Haley, The Total Tutor. The topics discussed included: Special Needs Children, Cooperative Learning, Mentoring, and Elementary Teacher Education.
On December 28th, 2010, Dr. Miller was interviewed on the “Never Give Up” radio show. In this 50 minute interview, Dr. Miller discusses how parents can be excellent mentors for their special needs children in order to lead them to strong academic performance and success in life.
When most people hear words such as “learning,” “smart,” or “memory,” they automatically think of the brain. In school, we teach “to the head” only, asking students to sit in chairs for long periods of time, listening and looking almost exclusively at abstract symbols, even when they are very young.
Very few people think the rest of the body has anything to do with academic success. But surprising results from brain research indicate that learning cannot occur without cooperation between the body and the brain.
Emotions and Stress
Because of the way the brain is wired, emotional states run our lives. Every activity in which your child engages is infused by his emotions. Emotions are constantly changing, and are easily influenced.
Emotions such as joy encourage brain cell development by releasing chemicals such as dopamine. When children are happy and calm, they learn and remember more than when they are anxious, tense or irritated. Your child’s brain releases dopamine in response to pleasurable circumstances such chocolate ice cream. But even more importantly, the brain releases dopamine in response to security, recognition, and success. Read more
Miller Educational Excellence is launching a monthly radio show on BlogTalkRadio. The show is called “Special Kid School Talk” and will air the first Sunday of the month (except for major holidays) at 3:00 pm PST, 6:00 pm EST.
The first show airs June 6th and the topic is What is Educational Therapy?
How can parents help their child with ADD, ADHD, autism, learning disabilities, or other learning roadblocks be academically successful?
Not many parents know about educational therapy and why it is a more effective alternative than tutoring for special needs students. Educational therapy has three important components.
The first is specialized programs and methods that help students ameliorate the learning problems that hold back their learning.
The second way educational therapy is superior to tutoring is that educational therapists are trained to teach skills and concepts using a student’s strong abilities, while circumventing a child’s learning weaknesses.
By far the most important distinction is the power of educational therapy to defeat special needs students’ greatest foe: learned helplessness—the belief that they are stupid.
Learn about this powerful approach in our first show. We will also be discussing how to keep children’s skills moving forward during the summer. Get tips for reducing the “summer brain slide” so your child can return to school without losing concepts and skills.
Call in with your questions during the show! I’ll be glad to answer any questions you have regarding educating special needs students. Looking forward to our first broadcast!
Visit our BlogTalkRadio show page for more info.
Individuals with ADHD and ADD often have difficulty with Executive Skills, also called Executive Functions. These are the skills that help us manage and direct our lives. They are analogous to the activities that an executive engages in to manage and direct a company or business.
Executive skills allow us to plan and organize our behavior, make well-considered decisions, overrule immediate desires in favor of longer-term goals, take conscious control of our emotions, and monitor our thoughts in order to work more efficiently and effectively.
There are a number of different theories and definitions of the skills that constitute executive functions. The following is a compilation that illustrates the full range of skills needed to effectively manage our lives.
Planning and prioritizing
The ability to create a plan to complete a task or to develop an approach to achieving a goal. This skill includes making decisions about what to direct attention toward and the ordering of the steps needed to achieve the goal.
One meaning of the term “bracketing” is “to place within.” This concept of “placing within” is a helpful strategy that students and adults can use to identify and appropriately deal with distracting thoughts.
In stage one, students decide whether their current thoughts are appropriate for the task at hand. If they are not, students can bracket them in stage two.
It is very helpful to teach students (and adults) to classify thoughts into three groups:
Now: appropriate to follow up on now, i.e. thoughts that promote full engagement in the lesson or other current task. During reading, for example, a “now” thought would be about the content of the reading (reading comprehension) or about ways to stay focused on reading.
15 million school age children in the US have learning problems that public and private schools can’t solve. There are 72,000 special education students in LAUSD, alone. Every day these students sit unhappily in class, losing hope of ever realizing their dreams. Students are living in pain and shame. They are not learning to be successful students.
Their parents are frustrated in their attempts to find suitable education for their child. They’ve tried working through the public schools. They have hired tutors. Parents are calling for real solutions.
In order to thrive, these students need special educational methods that address their unique profile of strengths and needs. But even more importantly, these children require a new mindset of success.
Educational therapy offers help and hope to children and adults with learning challenges such as ADHD, autism, dyslexia, and learning disabilities. Educational therapy is an appropriate and highly successful approach to helping students of all ages achieve their maximum potential.