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Don’t Always Rescue Your Struggling Learner

Mistake #1 / Rescue

I didn’t realize how much I rescue my struggling learner.

kimberlyvogel/rescuelearner

Let me start with what I did right. When I noticed the panic of not knowing an answer in her eyes, my smile and words of confidence helped bring peace. If that didn’t work, and real panic set it, we would breathe or do a physical activity. Once panic abated, we would try to complete the assignment.

Here’s where my tendency to rescue stepped in. If the correct answer didn’t come soon enough, I would provide it, then explain the why and how. That’s what teacher’s do, right?

Now that I’m becoming an expert and working with NILD, I learned a big lesson.

Don’t rescue.

During our therapy session, I sat with her giving her ample opportunity to answer the question. In one of our exercises, she didn’t know the answer, and actually became really mad at me for asking it. With a few prompts, she eventually answered correctly (chalk throwing may or may not have been involved). During a different exercise, she had to repeat after me but change something in the information. She stayed calm this time, but really struggled. I didn’t rescue. I just repeated the information calmly. Over. And. Over. Guess what? She did it! I paid attention to my thought processes and realized I often rescue. After three tries, I give in and give up the answer.

When I rescue, I’m taking away the opportunity for her to succeed.

After the end of that lesson, she told me she never wanted to do the therapy again.

I didn’t rescue. I let her own those feelings. I felt pretty defeated as well. The next day we discussed why we are doing it. At the end of that day’s therapy, she confessed she had fun!

I didn’t rescue,

she succeeded,

and her confidence grew!

Disclaimer: The therapy we are currently doing is practice for my NILD course. In July I will be certified as an educational therapist (level I). I do not share any information about students I do therapy with, unless they are my own children, with their consent.

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When Life Gives You Lemons… Become a Lemon Expert

Homeschooling a Struggling Learner

Lemons have a reputation for being sour. Sometimes they get a bad rap. But when you pair the lemons with a hint of sweetness… oh my. Serious deliciousness. That’s what today’s post is about – turning sour into sweet and doing ALL I CAN about it.  Life handed us a lemony situation and instead of becoming sour, I decided to become a lemon expert.

lemonpic1

One of my daughters struggles in a few learning areas. I’ve taken what I know and applied it in every way possible. I’ve hit the floor on my knees praying. I’ve researched, read books, and talked to people.

Finally I admitted I’m at the end of what I can do.

We found doctors, eye doctors, therapists, and even contacted the school district.

Wall after wall left us without viable options.

Sure, we had options, but they involved such things as:

  • enroll her in public school.
  • hire a tutor or therapist (4xs a week at 45/meeting – do the math!).
  • max out our medical account while still going into debt for several thousand dollars (Yep, up to $9,000!!).
  • buy a recommended homeschool curriculum for $300 to $3000.
  • use more affordable programs, but settle with our needs not being met.

Along this journey, I realized that there is a growing need in the homeschool community. There is a lack of HELP for those of us with struggling learners.

I also realized I don’t want a bandaid fix. No glossing over the problem, but discovering why the learning is hindered and what will heal the underlying problem.

To solve the problem of the sour lemon, I need to become a lemon expert. What recipe will turn the tart into tasty?

lemoninside

Here comes the big announcement:

This summer I am working on my certification to become an Educational Therapist. At the end of the program, I will be certified to work with children using the NILD program.

I researched several different programs to work with and found this one to be the best. It doesn’t just teach phonics (as some did), but retrains the brain. Ohhh… I love that brain stuff! And guess what? I’ll be sharing some fun facts I learn with you!

This would be a great time to follow me. No, not by coming to class with me! You can follow my blog by clicking the follow button on the top right. My blog posts will be emailed to you!

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