Online School For Learning Disabilities
Our school is certified in online tutoring for students with learning disabilities, and we train all of our employees to teach the Orton Gillingham method. With EBL Coaching, you can rest assured that your child will have the best experience working with our online school to reach your child’s learning goals. EBL Coaching is a pioneer in online schooling for people with disabilities, and can help YOUR child through their learning journey.
Online School For IEP Students
How Do I Know if My Child is Struggling in School?
Sometimes it can be hard to differentiate between normal academic challenges and real struggles in school. Your child may not vocalize their challenges so it’s important to keep tabs on them and look for patterns that may suggest a deeper issue. Keep an eye out for some of these patterns:
Your child takes a tremendous amount of time to complete homework. While homework policies tend to vary from school to school, the general guideline is ten minutes per grade for night. For instance, your first grader should spend ten minutes on homework per night, your second grader should take twenty minutes, and so on. If you notice your first grader is taking over an hour to complete her homework, that may suggest a problem.
Listen to your child’s teacher, as he or she spends a significant amount of time engaging with your child and observing their performance. If the teacher indicates that your child is struggling with an academic skill or set of skills, or your child receives poor grades, you may want to consider exploring these potential challenges with an evaluation.
Your child, who was previously well-behaved in school, begins to misbehave. This may be a coping mechanism to divert attention away from the learning challenges. Rather than vocalizing any issues, they may misbehave instead.
Your child may have trouble sleeping at night, complain of stomach aches, or lose his appetite as a result of struggles in school that they may not be articulating. He may also suddenly begin to say they hate school or is miserable in class. Any of these actions may be masking a deeper issue.
Pay attention to your child and look for these signs and patterns. If they become more profound, you may want to consider an evaluation for your child and subsequently, an IEP.
What Happens Next?
You as the parent must give permission to have an evaluation done of your child, which is typically completed by a school psychologist who determines, based on the evaluation, if your child is eligible for special education services. If so, an IEP meeting is held and an IEP document is created.
What is an IEP?
An IEP is a document that defines the educational program for a special education student and details all of the related services that a child should receive.
Once an evaluation is complete, you as the parent will take part in an IEP team meeting, which typically includes the parent, special education teacher, general education teacher, school psychologist, specialists such as occupational therapists and/or speech-language therapists, and others involved in creating the plan. Services that your child needs will be discussed and mapped out in the IEP, including but not limited to speech-language therapy, occupational therapy, physical therapy, Special Education Teacher Support Services (SETSS), and so on.
IEP meetings will take place every year to assess your child’s progress and to create a new IEP for the following year. Re-evaluations are done every three years to assess whether or not your child is in need of continued special education services.
If you notice that your child is struggling, don’t wait; there are many services and resources that are available to help your child feel confident and successful socially, emotionally, and academically.
Online Schools for Special Education
Most preschool-age children are not yet reading or writing. Many have not yet learned to write letters or or recognize sound/letter relationships. Yet early signs of dyslexia can be identified at this young age. Your child might struggle with phonemic awareness, or the ability to hear, recognize, and manipulate sounds in words. For example, rhyming might be a challenge. She may have trouble identifying initial sounds in words (ex: What sound does the word pizza start with?), medial sounds (ex: What is the middle sound you hear in the word hot?), or ending sounds (ex: What is the final sound you hear in the word red?). Try asking your child to say the word “dog” without the /d/ sound or “chop” without the /p/ sound. Struggling with this ability to manipulate sounds in words could be a sign of dyslexia. Furthermore, children with dyslexia might have trouble following directions or coming up with the correct word to describe an object or action.
As students progress through elementary school, reading and writing demands increase rapidly. At this age, you might notice that your child struggles to decode, or sound out, words–especially those he has never seen before. He may rely on his sight memory and picture clues to figure out words when reading, rather than trying to actually decode them. His reading fluency may be slow, and he might start to avoid reading out of embarrassment or lack of self-confidence. You also may notice that your child looks at the beginning sound of a word and guesses at the rest of it, and struggles to spell even basic single syllable words. Writing sentences and stories can be a challenge, and he might write the minimum amount necessary in order to be done with an assignment as quickly as possible.
By the time students reach middle school, those with dyslexia have typically already been identified. However, some students develop coping strategies that allow them to “mask” their dyslexia for quite a while. While this masking can often carry them through early grades, many students hit a wall when the reading and writing demands ramp up in middle and high school. You might find that your child’s speed of reading and completing work is very slow. He also may struggle with the simultaneous demands of writing: grammar, mechanics, organization, and spelling, and likely finds very little pleasure in reading. His overall self-esteem is low.
While dyslexia can be a lifelong challenge, for many parents and students, being diagnosed with dyslexia often comes as a relief. They feel better knowing that there is a reason for the constant struggle and that action can be taken to help relieve these challenges. The earlier students receive remediation to address their dyslexia-related struggles, the easier reading and writing will be as they move through school. Specialized methodologies, including the Orton Gillingham technique for decoding and spelling, and similar research-based, multi-sensory techniques for language processing and writing, can help dyslexic students tremendously as they progress through school and face the growing academic demands.
Online Private School For Special Needs
There’s no doubt that switching your child to a specialized school will provide him with a great deal of support. He may be in a smaller classroom size with a teacher (or more than one teacher) who is highly trained and qualified as a special educator. If he needs accommodations, like preferential seating, untimed tests, or notes printed for him, he will naturally receive them in this type of setting. Additionally, many students with special education needs often spend a great deal of time outside of school receiving speech therapy, occupational therapy, physical therapy, or the like. In many specialized settings, this support is built into the student’s day, allowing for much more free time outside of school and the chance to be a kid!
Socially, some special education students may feel isolated in a maintream school. They might find that they are “different” and can’t relate to the other kids in their class. As a result, poor self esteem, anxiety, and other mental health issues may arise. In a specialized setting, however, students will be with others like themselves, forming a nice camaraderie and bond with one another.
For kids with severe special needs, being in a specialized school may help strengthen their academics, help them socially, and make them feel better about themselves overall.
While specialized schools are great environments for some students, for others they may not be the best fit. Socially, while some students enjoy being a controlled environment with students just like themselves, others find it a bit too cohesive, and may enjoy being around other kids with different strengths and weaknesses. Some students thrive on this type of diversity.
Being in a specialized school, especially for a long period of time, can often lead to challenges transitioning to a mainstream school down the road. Some specialized schools, for instance, may lower their standards to accommodate the academic levels of the student body. Students may get used to these standards and expectations, which can be vastly different from those in a mainstream environment, and thus struggle academically when they switch to a non-specialized school.
Specialized schools can also be very expensive and cost-prohibitive to many families. While some government funding may be available, not all students may qualify for this type of funding and not all schools will accept it.
K12 Online School Special Education
Executive Functioning Skills: Pick a Homework Spot
Some children come home from school, plop their belongings down on any spot that looks clear, and begin to do their homework in that randomly selected place. Sound familiar? Help your child change this haphazard habit and create a regular, consistent homework spot where he will complete their homework every night. Some kids prefer working at a desk in their room, but others find that being in their room presents too many distractions. In that case, a more central area, like a dining room or kitchen table, may work well. Also, assess whether your child works better in a room alone or needs to be in a space where a parent or other adult can be around to answer questions as they arise. The key is maintaining a consistent spot every time homework is done.
Once an appropriate homework spot is selected, it’s important that it is always fully stocked with supplies that your child may need. These supplies may be in a non-movable spot, like desk drawers, shelves, or cabinets if your child works in a private space. However, a homework crate or bin may work better if your child works in a more centralized location, like a dining room or kitchen table. Just be sure to include all of the supplies your child may need, including pens, pencils, paper, a calculator, scissors, a laptop, and so on.
Set Up a Regular Homework Time
Try to identify the time of day after school when your child works best. Some kids prefer working right after school, when they are still in “work mode” and can plow through their homework efficiently. They may enjoy the feeling of accomplishment they get once their homework is done, and like having free time for the rest of the night. Others need a small break, like a snack or even some athletic activity, before sitting down to do their homework. Yet others are “night owls,” and do best working on their assignments after dinner. Generally speaking, earlier tends to be better since most kids start to tire as the day progresses.
Virtual School For Special Needs
For many students, the beginning of elementary school is a cinch. They master basic reading and math skills and enjoy completing homework assignments and worksheets independently. Their grades typically remain consistently strong. Yet some students reach a pinnacle – often around 3rd or 4th grade – when the academic demads accelerate and their grades start to drop. If you notice that your child’s grades dip consistently for a period of three to four months, he may benefit from some additional support. Certain concepts may confuse him, such as fractions and decimals in math, or metamorphosis in science. He may have trouble understanding what he reads or making inferences from the more complex material. While writing may have previously been a stregth for him when it was limited to basic sentences, composing full paragrpahs or essays may completely stymie him. In such cases, working with a one-on-one tutor can be very beneficial.
Your Child’s Confidence Dips
Parents always find pleasure in raising a confident child who has a strong self-esteem and belief in her own abilities. Yet when this confidence dips – or doesn’t exist from the ghetgo – a parent may develop concerns. Often times, when children feel they are not “good” at an academic skill – they see their peers reading chapter books, for instance, when they can only read 3-letter words in basic BOB books – their self-esteem may tumble. They might feel they can “never” be good at math or are terrible at writing when, in reality, with some one-on-one coaching, they have the ability to excel at each of these skills. By building a child’s academic skills through tutoring, her self-esteem often improves along with it.
Some children come home from school and complete their homework independently with no or little prompting. If they encounter a challenge, they calmly ask a peer or parent to help them through it. Yet for other kids, the task of completing homework – or at least certain types of homework – can seem insurmountable. They may lose their patience, become easily frustrated, and often have complete meltdowns. When parents try to help, the turmoil sometimes rises – ultimately negatively affecting the parent-child relationship. Often times, a third party tutor – someone who is not mom or dad – can be just the solution for building skills, easing frustration, and preventing these dreaded meltdowns.
Poor Time Management Skills
As children move through school, the studying and time management demands increase rapidly. The number of exams and homework assignments quickly rise – often along with additional extra curricular activities and other time-intensive demands – and children must learn to effectively manage their time in order to fit it all in. Many students, however, have poor executive functioning and time management skills. Those who once thrived in school often start to plummet academically as these demands rise. They may push off studying and assignments to the last minute, turn in projects late, or stay up until the early hours of morning to complete all of their work. A tutor can teach these students concrete strategies for more effectively planning and managing their time so their seemingly insurmountable work and activity load feels much more manageable.
Your Child Asks for a Tutor
When most of us were children, the idea of working with a tutor seemed almost like a punishment. Children felt subpar, or not “good enough” to succeed on their own if they needed a tutor. Yet in our current high-demand environment, with Common Core standards and new advances in our curricula, having a tutor – someone to help students navigate this challenging path – can seem like a gift. The negative connotation connected to tutoring has turned positive and many kids and parents now see the real positive value tutoring offers. In fact, while parents used to be the sole tutor-seekers, many students now self-advocate and ask their parents for a tutor, seeing how this support has helped their peers and friends and can help them too.
As children move from elementary to high school, the academic and studying demands increase exponentially. Some students can keep up with these increasing demands on their own but many benefit from additional instruction. If you notice your child struggling, you may want to consider a tutor. Having this added support can help your child feel calm, confident, and successful in school.