All parents need to know about executive skills. These are the skills that help us monitor and direct our lives. We use our executive skills to plan and organize our behavior, make well-thought-out decisions, overrule immediate desires in favor of longer-term goals, take conscious control of emotions, and monitor our thoughts in order to work more efficiently and effectively.
Kids with ADHD have difficulty with one or more of the executive skills. And other types of learning issues can cause a child to have trouble developing and using their executive skills. Read more
The homework routine often becomes an activity that neither parent nor child look forward to. The parent’s role in the homework process is to be sure the work your child brings home is appropriate and to set up the conditions in the home that are necessary for your child to be successful. Read more
It is very important for parents of kids with special learning needs to work with their child’s teacher to make the school year as productive as possible.
Learn everything you can about your child’s new teacher by talking to the principal and looking on the website. Try to arrange an informal visit with the teacher before school starts.
Take your child to visit a new school before school begins. Be sure to point out the cafeteria, lockers, gym, classroom, bus stop, play areas, restrooms, and main office. Children need to know how to get around and find all the people and places they need during the day. Read more
I’m often asked how my educational therapy approach is different from tutoring. Tutors focus on teaching bodies of facts, and sometimes a small number of study skills. Tutors are basically helpful to students when the student learns relatively easily and has just fallen a little behind for some reason such as being ill.
But tutors are NOT trained in the way the human brain learns so they don’t know how to help students who learn differently or who have complicated learning needs. Read more
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.
How to Avoid Mistakes Some Parents Unconsciously Make
You love your special needs child and want the best for him or her. If you discovered that you were unconsciously contributing to your child’s learning problems, I know you would want to find a different approach. Three damaging behaviors some parents employ include: focusing on a child’s problems rather than potential solutions, reinforcing a child’s feelings about his/her limitations, and not knowing how to develop a strong relationship with their child.
Listen to this episode of Special Kid School Talk to learn:
- The qualities that make special needs students successful and how parents can encourage these powerful qualities in their children.
- How to avoid the parenting traps that rob your child of the power to succeed.
- How to become a “charismatic” parent and develop a loving and connected relationship with your child.
Some people would answer something such as “the ability to stay calm,” or “providing the right kind of structure,” or “keeping yourself healthy and well-rested.”
Although these are crucial for long-term success in raising a child with ADD or ADHD, the most essential parenting trait is trust.
A child with a disability of any kind has the potential to grow and develop beyond any expectations that adults in his life current hold for him, but only if he himself believes in his future. Without belief, he is limited to modest gains at best.
Children who believe in themselves and their outcomes are committed in their endeavors. We all know from experience that the things we are committed to are not only easier for us, they are the things we stick with until we complete them.
The messages you send your child influence his level of commitment through his belief about who he is and what he can accomplish
Personal qualities that support academic success
Students who have the following personal qualities are much more likely to thrive in college. You can read more detailed descriptions of the qualities that insure college success here.
- Self-awareness and self-acceptance
- Proactivity as opposed to reactivity
- Skill in setting short and long-range goals
- Use of effective support systems
- Strong emotional coping strategies
Understanding a student’s rights in college
Individuals with special learning needs are guaranteed special supports in elementary and high school by the Individuals with Disabilities Education Act and Section 504 of the Rehabilitation Act. However, in college, no such guaranteed protections exist. Therefore, students need to work congenially with colleges to obtain reasonable accommodations that will facilitate their success.
February is Plant the Seeds of Greatness Month and National Parent Leadership Month.
Children with special learning needs have experienced more failure and disappointment than other children. Parenting children with special learning needs can be difficult, and calls forth from their parents an extra measure of care in “planting the seeds of greatness.”
Seeds of “greatness” grow into strong, confident children—skilled learners who make bold choices and expect the best for their lives. They see setbacks as temporary and know they can find ways to surmount the obstacles that present themselves.
Children grown from greatness develop a “winner” mentality that supports them when life becomes challenging. Children grown from these seeds problem-solve; they test out theories; they create wonderful new platforms from which to explore and conquer life; they carve out a strong personal identity. They reject thoughts of failure. They create. They succeed. These children lead. Read more