Friday, August 1, 2014

Random thoughts from Math Interactive Learning Experience - Day one

Ok - I will write something more coherent about this when I have not been up so long listening and talking so much and don't still have homework to finish for day two.  But here are some random thoughts I jotted down as we went through day one:

I’m so excited and oddly enough anxious.  I get these odd anxiety attacks at times and I’m always surprised by them.  I’m sitting here in the class waiting for it to start and I’m hoping that once we dive into the material the nerves will melt away. 

Only 15 min into class and I am already in passionate discussions with the presenter about terminology and the impacts of such.

Oh I SO Need a copy of these DTI slides!!!

Interesting idea about the pattern of damage in the brain – appears that most serious structural issues are in the central line of brain just as in central area of the face.  (Wonder how that matches to ASD?)

Cool way of pointing out perseveration to the child – talking about what is happening in their head to try and break the cycle even if they don’t totally get the point you still have started them thinking in another direction.  Do it often enough and maybe it will start to become habit when they feel frustration rising to think “hey maybe I’m stuck”

So a lot more of this program is really about a Behavioral Intervention to teach arousal regulation skills and thinking skills than Math per se.  Math is the topic they picked but you could apply same principles to any subject.  Interesting blend of intervention with the child and changes to environment.

hmmm – they appear to be stressing building graphomotor skills as part of math.  Wonder why making an accommodation on that part is not part of the program.  They think learning to write helps learn the math but I wonder if it is just the repetition in another format that is the benefit

Perseveration comes up again – issue of being able to accept correction of thought process stuck in that one way of thinking and unable to see / hear / process the correction.

Says that “can’t understand cause and effect” is a “myth”  Hope they will explore what they mean by this more because it seems to contradict a lot of what I’ve heard before.  I hope what they are saying is that it is not a natural thought process for them but can be explicitly taught.
They say absolutely that behavior mod works – if focused closely enough and done properly – And the mention sticker charts – AHHHHHHHHHHH – I am exerting enormous control to not run from the room!!

NAAP – is about to launch a program to push FASD knowledge with this with general pediatricians next year!!!!  Boy has that been a long time coming but glad to hear that it will be rolled out finally.


Some parts of this is really NB consistent some not as much.  They definitely are on the dysmaturity and addressing the child at developmental level.

HUGE focus on one to one and relationship building which is totally geared to FASD learners.
Visual spatial issues can be part of the problem with understanding temporal concepts – hmm had no idea they were related.   Cool that they have some ideas of how to address this.

This Focus Act Reflect model of teaching math is actually teaching them thinking skills.  I wonder if we could get this same model being used in every aspect of learning (home, all subjects at school, in social interactions) what would that do for thought process development?  Could the amount of “contact time” with the thought process be as useful to developing that skill as the amount of contact time with a subject matter helps knowledge in that subject?  Interesting idea.

Changing view from “child can’t focus”  to “child has not learned focus skills yet.  I kind of like this.  I think it plays into cause and effect – instead of saying they can’ learn from it let’s say they have not learned that skill.  Is it possible they will top out in their ability before they make any huge link?  Sure.  But we have to explicitly teach from a very basic level repeatedly before we say can’t at all.   Ok – I can accept that.

Math observation checklist Layout follows developmental model.  Ranges from earliest skills to later skills – makes sense I like it – we are not looking at grade level requirements but developmental ones.

Have to master earlier skills first in order to master later.

Talking about planning sessions – huge focus in how to keep and slowly build attention. 

Also talking about allowing processing time!!  Ten second rule.  Studies show most teachers ask and expect answer w in 2 sec.  Teaches either impulsivity or passivity. Blurt out anything (or get angry) or tune out because they will move onto another student.

Method sounds simple /  intuitive – betting like NB model it is not necessarily as easy to implement as it sounds.  

There are more coherent thoughts about the program here

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