Monday, January 31, 2011
Dyslexia....and other things....
OK so dyslexia. Yeah, if you are a homeschool mommy like me- you feel like a BIG FAT FAILURE!!!! Seriously thought this for a LOOONNNNGGGG time. BUT, decided to get over myself so I could help my child. They are moderate to severe in every category of dyslexia. You can go online and do any search to fill out an online form to find out if your child may have dyslexia.
After lots of research- although I am NOT an expert. I would start here- hslda.org- they have a web page dedicated to learning blocks. This really helped me understand what their specific blocks are. Some things that can help instantly are things like a colored plastic transparency- for some kinds of blocks. Sometimes there are other things too.
If you know that your child has reading blocks I would highly recommend Brain Integration Therapy Manual by Dianne Craft. It is a book that talks about blocks in hearing and understanding, slow labored reading, dyslexia, eye tracking, poor memory, and laborious writing. We have integrated our child's exercises for all of our kids daily after lunch along with some of our own. These specific exercises focus on eye tracking, crossing the body- right to left and the opposite, stretching, etc. Then there is "repatterning" if you haven't done this - it is a way to "tell" the brain what you want it to do more of. It has been a huge help with our child! Seriously!!!!! Worth your time!!!!
Another great thing for those with reading issues......TRUE level 1 reading books- few and far inbetween. For the average reader- not a big deal for those who truly struggle- BIG DEAL and it lowers their self esteem by large amounts! So books like Merrill Reading Program called I Can, Dig In, and there are several others in the series- are GREAT! They truly use the same words over and over and introduce a few new words every 5 pages. IT WORKS and they feel much sooner the excitement of reading. VERY important.
Now for everyday reading teaching we use the Teach Your Child to Read in 100 Easy Lessons- LOVE THIS! But if you are helping a child who struggles it is NOT enough. We along with that use Right Brain Phonics Program by Dianne Craft. We also got the colorful picture cards that go along with the letters and sound combos. IMPORTANT the pictures need to be "behind" the letters. Also when teaching new words you need to make them into pictures. This is all explained in the books, but it has to be pictures, visual, very very very very repetitive.
We also just got the "all about spelling" program which I can NOT wait to start! Instead of hopping right in- which is fine for our other children. It literally breaks everything down into small pieces!!! It teaches the rules of spelling, concentrates on phonograms, has colored tiles to teach the spelling, has all kinds of suggestions for kinestetic learning, daily review, charts, and much more! I am in love with it because for the first time ever I really feel like this will help my babe to spell.
If you have ever had this issue you will know what I mean when I say every step is a HUGE DEAL! Kind of like with a child that needs that extra love and attention (rad), or children that have any extra needs. When they make progress it is HUGE!!! I have seen my child go from crying over every reading lesson to success! I couldn't be happier.
One other thing- it does NOT happen overnight. BUT it can happen. I would love to encourage all of you with struggling readers and learners out there!!!! It can happen!!!! My babe has taken years of the slow laborous road and is finally reaching some huge goals- now that we have more tools. With God ALL THINGS ARE POSSIBLE!!!!!
**Side note this Saturday will be the BIG ANNOUNCEMENT! Please be praying for us. This is a big deal and things are not easy, but we are taking it one step at a time and trying to do what needs to be done for our family. THANKS!!!
*******ALSO please be praying for a 13 year old boy that needs a new family ASAP!!!!!!!!!! If you would like more details PLEASE e-mail, facebook me for additional details- PLEASE JOIN IN PRAYER we have seen and experienced sooo many miracles so WE KNOW OUR GOD HAS A HUGE HEART FOR ALL HIS CHILDREN!!!!! This is a domestic adoption- not international for those wondering. :) THANKS!
Sunday, January 30, 2011
How's the Rocking Going...........
So how is the rocking going. If you don't know what I mean....it was a challenge put out there to rock in a rocking chair- or just spend 10-15 minutes a day cuddling with your child that needs more love :)
Now before you jump to conclusions on anything, know that in our experience we have really worked hard on making changes in our home- looking into eyes, remaining calm, not letting it get to us, trying not to take it personally, making adjustments in how we react and talk with our loved child. BUT being honest. When you have gone through the ringer.....it is hard....it is tiring....you want to quit....you want to throw in the towel...and there are days- YOU DON'T DO WELL. Yep, it's true. BUT you get back up and you start over and try MORE!
So the rocking for me has really not been about my beloved child- it is really about me. MY attitude. MY need to change my heart. MY need to make sure that I am reminded daily that I LOVE HIM/HER with my whole being. MY desire to fall in love with them again and again.
If that is the desired effect of this exercise- IT IS WORKING!!! Now let me be EXTREMELY CLEAR- I HAVE AND ALWAYS WILL LOVE EVERY TREASURE IN OUR HOME!!!!!! There has never been doubt of that- EVER. But sometimes our hearts get ripped out while trying to heal the hearts of our little ones. We need healing too. For me, this has helped me in ways I really can't quite describe.
Our times together are beyond value. Simple. My child has thoroughly enjoyed it as well....conversations ....sometimes silly, but sometimes really honest. Reading together....or just snuggling and cuddling. It has been worth it- even on the days I haven't had "the time".
The crazy part is - we have set times and activities we do with our children all the time. We homeschool. We love listening and spending time with our kiddos. So why is this different? I don't know - it just has been. I think it has to do with my attitude.
You ask- has it helped my child? I think it has....probably more because it has helped me. For the first time in a LOOONNNGGG time- TRUTH was told! Now for anyone out there can I get an AMEN? This was huge!!!! She realized it too. I seriously almost threw a party- believe me there was great rejoicing going on!!! My child has also shared some feelings with me that weren't fake- HUGE!!!! My child looks forward to cuddle time! My child has looked into my eyes more than any other time.
So praying that God continues to change me for HIM! To help us all love each other better :)
***Would appreciate some prayers- Joanna is sick right now. Her first fever :( sad days......
****There is also something big going on in our lives and I SOO want to share but can't for at least another week. Sorry, but we NEED PRAYERS over this as well. - it is not a child this time, but huge for our family.
Wednesday, January 26, 2011
Grandparents- LOADS of pics :)
Pray you all have a BLESSED day- I am cutting my fourth tooth and am feeling a bit cranky, but it's all good because mommy & daddy hold me all day anyway :) he he he - good night!
Monday, January 24, 2011
Some GREAT reads!!!
So today I have read some really incredible reads and I wanted to share them with you.
For those of you who have RAD kids- this really explains how they feel in terms I have never thought of - but it is WONDERFUL!!!
This POST is a wonderful review of her blog and let me tell you if you are having a hard time loving your child when they are hurting- she has some great tips in her year and a half review!!!! Go check it out!!!
THIS POST is one that EVERYONE should read because it is something that we should all grieve DAILY! Please go read this!!! We can not forget the over 50 million......that have been murdered.
I will just say today has been a tough day yet again, but I am PRAISING because God is STILL IN CONTROL!!!! He hasn't left HIS throne so I will keep fighting for what I know to be TRUE!!! AMEN :)
Sunday, January 23, 2011
How to love a child .............. (more grandparent visit pics too)
PRAY!!!!! There is nothing to help you and them out more than this - PRAY and SEEK GOD! There are hundreds of books on different kinds of behaviors, but PRAYER and SEEKING GOD- ONLY ADVICE YOU NEED!!!!!! These things are not a side thought, but should be our only thought!!!!!! I mentioned this in a previous post as well.
UNDER react to it all- as in try not to react at all. This is a huge thing and is very very very hard for me, but when I do it- it helps A LOT. Make it a mind game of your own to see how many times you can do this :) The reason I think this is powerful is because manipulation is what they want. They want to control you. This does not come from God. Release yourself from this.
Do something silly to release your tension and dispell the meltdown. A bloggy friend said about singing opera- made me crack up- but it is effective. If your child pees when they are upset- throw some peas on the floor (got that one from a book). Count backwards from 100, sing a silly song, break out in a happy dance, laugh hysterically. Whatever can help you relieve that tension and not get upset because anger is never the answer. TRY IT!
Try anything and everything to win them over. As in if it takes giving them candy, treats, special hug times, cuddles in a rocking chair, special 10 minute times during the day just for them, rubbing lotion on their feet- your feet- WHATEVER!!!! I used to think my other children would be jealous, but we have all agreed, it helps! They see the difference not to mention we try to do things with all of our children as much as possible too! Whatever you can do to get them to not be stiff when you hug them, to help get that eye contact even if for a few seconds to start with.
Whatever you do DO NOT TAKE IT PERSONALLY!!!!!! This is another toughie! Seriously how do you not take it personally when your child all but ignores you or if they talk to you it is all fake. When you say to them over and over and over I love you and they don't respond or if they do it is "ok". When you have done everything you can to give them attention and the 50 snacks a day to make sure they know you love them and they ignore you like you don't exist. TOUGH, but again remember THERE IS HOPE!!!!!!
Work on 1 thing at a time! This has really helped us....he he he. If you try to work on the lying, the stealing, the kissing strangers, the lack of eye contact, the manipulation, the blank stares, the meltdowns, the explosions - ETC. all at once it will only give you and them FRUSTRATION!!!!! So pick one thing. Make it small- like a few seconds of eye contact or no explosions for an hour. Seriously- start small......and then gradually sometimes more than others expect more. And you know what will happen- there WILL be set backs. Times when you feel like what you just worked on is down the tubes- THERE IS HOPE!!!!! So start over. As friends have pointed out sometimes the set backs are things we forget. Anniversaries of things that happened to them. The brain is a very complex and wonderful thing- and even if you don't think your child could possibly remember - THEY DO! There is a reason I know this :).
That is the GLORY OF GOD! God chose to make us all differently and not the same. Of course HE did not plan for your child to be hurt, but they have been some very very very severely. At the end of the day I praise God for not making myself and my many many many many quirks the same as my husband. Otherwise we wouldn't "fit" together. BUT I TRUST GOD! I trust HIM in HIS infinite wisdom as HE placed our family together (and continues to do so).
My new favorite song- Chris Tomlin sings Our God is Greater - if you haven't heard this song- listen to it on the songs below. My favorite part....
And if Our God is with us, then who could ever stop us?
And if Our God is for us, then who can stand against?
ANSWER- NO ONE!!! NO BEHAVIOR!!! NO LETTERS OF THE ALPHABET no matter what they stand for!!!!!!! Our God is HOPE!!!! Lean on HIM!!!
And just before this really gets long.......We have seen improvement!!!!! We have seen.....less lying, more attachment, more looking in the eyes, less tantrums, and while we have a ways to go. Yeah- God says the same about me :) So we are in the same boat! :)
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