No excuses I just haven’t been writing as often as I should. BUT I did get married. Yes, Karey Hope and I got married on July 30 at 4pm in the back yard of the home where I grew up in Duncan, British Columbia, Canada. Karey and I did most of the planning of this event and it took up most of our time for May, June and July as well as doing the work we do with Dyslexia and this website and blog. We had in-laws and relatives from as far South as California, and as far west as Denver Colorado. It was a lot of fun and took a couple of weeks to finish visiting family and friends. We hope to post some photos on our website, as soon as we get them organized.
So not an excuse, just letting you that we have been distracted from our writing duties and now we are back on track. By the way, Karey and I have waited since 1978 to get married. That is definitely a story that bears explaining at another time but just know that there were a few delays over the past few decades but we finally got it right. Like it says in the invitations to the wedding: “Howie and Karey are FINALLY getting married.”
Karey and I do a lot of research on Dyslexia and Right Brained learning styles and we find lots of great information and we come up with our own ideas too. Earlier this week I started reading the book; “Right-Brained Children in a Left Brained World” and it is fascinating. The author, Jeffrey Freed MAT, is an educational consultant who has tutored and helped thousands of ADD and Gifted students. This book is interesting for me for a couple of reasons; it is written in a fashion that makes it a joy to read and it says so much of what we believe.
We are learning that there is a lot more in common with ADD, Dyslexia and other learning “disabilities”. Jeffrey makes it clear that being very Right Brained leads to all kinds of learning issues. These learning problems are just behaviours that are the result of being taught in a fashion that is inappropriate to Right Brained students. The problem with these children is not with how they learn but rather how they are taught.
He tells the reader about many techniques he uses to help his students, many of them are almost exactly what we recommend to parents and teachers. I have heard from some of the teachers who attend our Professional Development workshops that our teaching methods are just good basic teaching. Jeffrey says the same thing but the important thing to remember is what both Jeffrey and we realize that we are working with students who process information differently.
Sometimes we meet with teachers who would be grateful to just be given methods that work for specific children based on the label put on them by professionals who do the Psych-Educational testing. Having the methods to teach specific groups of students is only going to work if you know what that child is all about.
Jeffrey makes it clear in this book that we can’t label these children by the behaviours they exhibit that are result of the frustration of being taught in a manner that makes no sense to them. We can’t focus on the deficits that are used to create the labels used to name the learner. We need to focus on the incredible learning strengths of these Right Brained learners.
This is a great book to put on your reading list because it helps put Dyslexia as a particular learning style into a positive light; there are simple methods that do work with these learners. The methods are easy to duplicate, take no specialized training and can be done with materials readily at hand.
Karey and I have mentioned in earlier blogs that one of our goals is to update our books to reflect the new knowledge we are gathering in our research. We do intend to do that in the near future but after reading Jeffrey Freed’s book I realized we have a resource available right now that can be used as a teaching template for Right Brained learners. The methods we recommend for Dyslexic students are also going to be very useful for ADD students.
Along with the many recommendations and resources we include in the teaching programs we create for our clients there is a section we call the “14 Steps to Teach Dyslexic Students how to Spell and Read”. Parents and teachers have told us that the “14 Steps” is so effective as a teaching tool that they have had tremendous success with it by itself.
We are going to incorporate it, along with other methods we have discovered, researched and tested, in the soon to be updated books we publish but we believe it is important to offer it now. So, for parents and teachers who would like a resource that is simple to use and requires no additional training or materials to help with their Right Brained learner we are offering it right now.
I hope I haven’t presented this as a sales pitch just to sell our products because that is not our goal here. As we have said a couple of times our aim is, and always will be, to get you the best information to help you succeed, not just to make a buck. When I read this short manual,”14 Steps” Karey created I realized that these resources need to be presented to parents and teachers now.
Here also is a link to “Right-Brained Children in a Left Brained World” by Jeffrey Freed
from Mr Howard deGraaf & Mrs Karey Hope-deGraaf,