Wednesday, January 25, 2006

Accommodations That Improve Learning

There's a common misconception of accommodations as crutches that harm a student in the long run because it reduces the challenge. This is a mistake - particularly for moderate to severely affected LD students, or those with working memory constraints who must break down tasks in steps in order to master them.

There is a balancing act between providing incremental and appropriate challenge, and accommodations, and this may change over time. The link below discusses how allowing dyslexic students to use an OCR reading pen improved reading performance.

Another example: At our daughter's former school, her teacher told us about a severely dyslexic boy allowed use spellcheck for spelling tests. She thought about doing this because she thought it would help him improve his spelling enough so that the spellchecker could catch it. After 2 weeks with this accommodation, he surprised her by telling her, he'd like the take the test the old way. He did the best he had ever done! By just having these few weeks with accommodation, he was able to master much more of the whole task and master the patterns better.

SchwabLearning - Reading Pen as an Accommodation

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