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Saturday, July 7, 2012

Calendar Quickie: Live Chat 7/11 - Dr. Jerome Schultz on Kids with Learning Disabilities, ADHD and Other Educational Challenges

From Voices of Dragon - A Blog by the Makers of Dragon NaturallySpeaking Voice Recognition Software

July 3, 2012

Dr. Jerome Schultz, a specialist in the study of children and adolescents with learning disabilities, will host a FREE, live Facebook chat on Wednesday, July 11th from 10:00 to 11:00am EST. Read below to learn more about Jerry, the chat, and how to participate!

Click HERE to "Join" this event on Facebook.

Tell us a little about yourself and your background.
I started out my professional career as a special education teacher, and by virtue of some wonderful opportunities, mentors and training programs, I evolved into what I am today, a Clinical Neuropsychologist.

I consult to schools and parents of children and adolescents who have learning disabilities; ADHD, Asperger's Syndrome and other conditions that impact learning and behavior. I also work with kids who are gifted and talented, but who also struggle with learning disabilities. Over the years, I’ve become convinced that the greatest impediment for kids is not that they have these neurologically-based conditions, but rather the way they see themselves as learners.

I’m particularly interested in the negative impact of stress on brain function and learning, and why these kids are so susceptible to stress. My book, Nowhere to Hide: Why Kids with ADHD and LD Hate School and What We Can Do About It (Jossey-Bass), is all about this phenomenon.

What makes you so passionate about the field of education?
As a teacher, a teacher-educator, and consultant, I have had the wonderful opportunity to observe and learn from some exquisitely talented teachers, and it’s miraculous what can happen when teachers “get” kids, and break down the cognitive and emotional barriers to learning that lets students experience the joy of success. Seeing this happen over and over again confirms my beliefs about the power of the human interaction in the classroom.

I know that when kids have a better understanding of their own learning vulnerabilities and how to use their strengths to overcome or work around them, they enjoy school, come to love learning, and feel competent and confident.

What would you say are some of the hot topics right now with regard to learning disabilities and education?
Proposed changes in the DSM-V, the psychiatric manual that guides the diagnosis of a variety of conditions, may set back the field of learning disabilities – specifically the understanding of dyslexia – by decades. The debates are raging about that. The big “elephant in the room” for LD is whether or not kids are getting the specialized and intensive instruction they require (and which studies prove to be effective) in so-called “inclusion programs.”

Another huge concern is how kids with fragile emotions (stress, anxiety, depression) or difficult behaviors (oppositional, defiant, resistant, aggressive) challenge even the most talented teachers.

What kinds of topics can folks expect to be discussed during the live chat?
I’ll be talking about the science that helps us understand the stress response, and I’ll be offering specific suggestions and strategies to help parents, teachers and kids get out from under the spell of stress and find success. If someone gets me started on the topic of responsible inclusion for kids with LD and ADHD, we’ll have to extend the chat!

We’ll have a chance to discuss my DE-STRESS model of intervention, and talk about why kids with poorly understood LD or ADHD have to “Save FASE” (I didn’t misspell that–I’ll explain it during the chat!)

I’ll also be interested in hearing from participants about how they’ve used technology to give kids with learning challenges the chance to be more in control of their own learning. I’ll talk about my experiences as a writer using Dragon NaturallySpeaking, and how I’ve seen this and other programs unlock the doors for learning for so many kids.

Who should participate? How and when can they tune-in?
I hope that general as well as special education teachers will join us, along with administrators and specialists like occupational and speech therapists. It would be great if schools use this opportunity for professional development. Teaching assistants will also find the session informative.

Parents and others who care about kids will be very interested in this dialogue, and their comments will add an important perspective to the discussion. The chat will be relevant to mental health workers as well, because we’ll be discussing kids’ emotional reactions to learning difficulties.

Joining the chat is easy. Just follow the link below and click “yes” to signify that you will be attending. Then, tune-in on Wednesday, July 11th from 10:00 to 11:00am EST. More info can also be found on Dragon’s Facebook page.

R.S.V.P. to the event HERE!

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