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So what’s the problem


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Used with elementary teachers who responded well to learning how to better identify a problem during the RTI process. Thoughts and comments welcome! This is my first SlideShare!

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So what’s the problem

  1. 1. So What’s The Problem? Selecting skills to target for intervention
  2. 2. He has trouble with reading… <ul><li>Because… </li></ul><ul><ul><li>he doesn’t have phonemic awareness, </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>isn’t using phonics skills </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>doesn’t read with fluency </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>has poor vocabulary </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>isn’t comprehending what he reads </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>…or what exactly? </li></ul></ul>
  3. 3. How would you describe a student’s comprehension problem? <ul><li>He gets specifics but can’t answer higher order questions about the story </li></ul><ul><li>He does poorly on multiple choice questions about the story </li></ul><ul><li>He can’t retell a story orally </li></ul><ul><li>He can’t answer questions orally in class about what we are reading </li></ul><ul><li>He can’t summarize or write out thoughts about a story </li></ul><ul><li>All of the above! </li></ul>
  4. 4. Let’s consider each type of problem <ul><li>He doesn’t get higher order questions. Why? </li></ul><ul><li>Is he able to do so on topics of interest e.g. science class discussions/projects? (and thus maybe it is a reading comprehension problem) </li></ul><ul><li>Is he rarely able to “get” more abstract concepts (and thus maybe has an ability problem)? CogAt can provide a clue. </li></ul>
  5. 5. He scores poorly on multiple choice questions about the text <ul><li>But does he do better if the test is read aloud? (thus maybe it’s a more basic reading problem) </li></ul><ul><li>Does he get more concrete questions but miss the more abstract (maybe we are back to basic ability?) </li></ul><ul><li>Do his answers suggest a vocabulary problem? (he misses questions that require vocabulary knowledge) </li></ul>
  6. 6. He can answer questions in class but not on a test! <ul><li>So maybe he understood the story when it was discussed but couldn’t read it well enough himself to gain understanding? (reading problem) </li></ul><ul><li>He can’t retell a story or tell me key features of it, even after discussion (ability? Memory?) </li></ul><ul><li>He does better in history tests than on reading tests. (memory for facts, higher interest items, less abstraction in non-fiction vs fiction?) </li></ul>
  7. 7. He can do multiple choice but can’t write a summary <ul><li>Does the summary have good content but poor mechanics? (writing problem) </li></ul><ul><li>Can he talk about but not write about the story (written expression problem?) </li></ul><ul><li>Perhaps he is better at recognition (multiple choice) than recall (essay) </li></ul>
  8. 8. But he has trouble with all levels of comprehension and all modes of testing! <ul><li>So then let’s look at fluency and vocabulary next </li></ul><ul><li>Is his speaking vocabulary similar to that of other students in his grade? </li></ul><ul><li>Does he have trouble with synonyms and antonyms (and thus doesn’t recognize them when reading) </li></ul><ul><li>How does he do on vocabulary tests? </li></ul><ul><li>If he reads fluently but isn’t sure of word meanings that may be impacting his comprehension, especially on higher order questions </li></ul>
  9. 9. Vocabulary seems OK? Then let’s look at fluency Words Per Minute (WPM) <ul><li>WPM gives you a fluency score but the important part is determining why a child is not fluent! </li></ul><ul><li>Few but accurate WPM suggests slow decoding, thus loss of sentence meaning. Try to build fluency. </li></ul><ul><li>Many and accurate WPM but poor expression suggests focus on words and a loss of meaning. Work on expression. </li></ul>
  10. 10. Fluency <ul><li>Low WPM with numerous errors suggests a basic reading (decoding) problem. Assess word reading. </li></ul><ul><li>High WPM with errors, substitutions, omissions, losing place, etc. suggests a reading disability of various kinds. Analyze word reading errors to figure out what kind. </li></ul>
  11. 11. Some examples <ul><li>Tiffany </li></ul><ul><li>Colin </li></ul><ul><li>Robbie </li></ul><ul><li>Susie </li></ul><ul><li>4 th grader in ATeam </li></ul>
  12. 12. OK, we’ve got lots of errors on the fluency passage, now what? <ul><li>Hmmm, starting to look more like a decoding problem, reading disability, visual or auditory processing?? </li></ul><ul><li>Let’s try word lists rather than passages and analyze the errors. </li></ul>
  13. 13. Error Analysis of Misread Words <ul><li>Was/saw, bib/dig, ton/not, black/block, etc. may suggest visual processing and are “LDish” </li></ul><ul><li>Pencil/pesnil, aluminum/aminilum, simpson/smispin etc. may suggest auditory sequential processing and are “LDish” </li></ul><ul><li>Missing phonics rules are usually apparent and could be just missed instruction (e.g. never did get those long vowel rules) </li></ul>
  14. 14. And if the problem is more than that? <ul><li>Does the child show an understanding of letter/sound relationships? What is his level of phonetic understanding? CVC but not CVCe? </li></ul><ul><li>Does he show phonemic awareness? Is he hearing and identifying sounds? </li></ul><ul><li>Does he recognize all of his letters? </li></ul>
  15. 15. Why isn’t she learning her letters and sounds? <ul><li>Ability? Memory? Processing? Attention? Readiness? </li></ul><ul><li>Ability? Does she seem to have the same level of understanding on general topics as other students her age? </li></ul><ul><li>She knows it today but not tomorrow! Memory? </li></ul>
  16. 16. Letters and Numbers <ul><li>Processing. Doesn’t seem to get symbols of language </li></ul><ul><li>Attention Can she attend to high interest activities? Is she responding to expectations to attend? </li></ul><ul><li>Readiness What is her prior experience? Maturity level compared to peers? </li></ul>
  17. 17. Symbols of language <ul><li>b d p q h j </li></ul><ul><li>c o e s z </li></ul><ul><li>l t i f k </li></ul><ul><li>m n v w x y </li></ul><ul><li>Oh, and each one represents a sound? And if you put some together they might make a different sound? </li></ul><ul><li>How does anyone learn to read?! </li></ul>
  18. 18. It’s math but is it calculation, problem solving, or reading, no, maybe memory?? <ul><li>Math difficulties come in many forms! </li></ul><ul><li>Solving a math problem involves: </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Reading it correctly </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Knowing how to solve it </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Keeping all the information in mind </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Applying the right calculation process </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Calculating it correctly </li></ul></ul>
  19. 19. How much of this is a reading or memory problem? <ul><li>Doing better with read aloud is one clue but… </li></ul><ul><li>Students with working memory difficulties can’t remember what you just read to them </li></ul><ul><li>Some students also have trouble retaining both numbers and language (Did Susie have more or was it Sarah? Susie had 12 but I forget how many that other girl had!) </li></ul><ul><li>If the child can do the calculation after you step him through the process, it’s more of a process problem </li></ul><ul><li>Having the student read aloud a problem to you and discuss it may help answer these questions </li></ul>
  20. 20. Math Disabilities are often Working Memory Disabilities <ul><li>Can the student hold 2- 3-step directions in mind long enough to follow them? </li></ul><ul><li>When questioned can he recall both names and numbers in a problem? </li></ul><ul><li>Has the student committed math facts and formulas to memory? If not, the student is using up working memory on facts and there’s not much left for problem solving! </li></ul>
  21. 21. What do you think the problem is here? <ul><li>Mary’s car get 23 mpg. How far can she drive on five gallons? </li></ul><ul><li>OK, that’s 23 x 5, hmmm, that’s 105, I got it! </li></ul><ul><li>Yep, regrouping. She knew what to do, and probably knew that 3 x 5 is 15, but didn’t correctly regroup the 1 to the tens place. </li></ul>
  22. 22. But what about this student? <ul><li>Bob’s car gets 30 mpg. How far can he drive on 5 gallons? </li></ul><ul><li>Hmmm, oh, yeah, 35! </li></ul><ul><li>Oops, he doesn’t understand the problem although he can add pretty well! </li></ul>
  23. 23. What is this 4 th grade child’s problem? <ul><li>Four people each have 30 dollars. How much do they have together? </li></ul><ul><li>OK, 30 + 30 + 30 + 30. That’s …0, 123, 456, 789, 10,11,12. OK, 120. </li></ul><ul><li>Yep, two things: he doesn’t get the relationship between adding and multiplying; and he does not have a fluent use of math facts. </li></ul>
  24. 24. And here? <ul><li>If you buy a ball for 45 cents and a pencil for 28 cents how much change would you get back from $1? </li></ul><ul><li>Susie: 73 cents! </li></ul><ul><li>Joe: 26 cents! </li></ul><ul><li>Rebecca: 17 cents! </li></ul><ul><li>Sam: How much was the pencil? </li></ul><ul><li>Stan: Where can you get a ball for 45 cents? </li></ul>
  25. 25. What do you mean, “LDish”? <ul><li>Impulsive </li></ul><ul><li>mispronounces words in reading either from visual or auditory processing problems </li></ul><ul><li>Can’t keep things in memory or remembers them out of order </li></ul><ul><li>Particular types of spelling/writing errors (not just wen for when but presnet for present) </li></ul>
  26. 26. LDishness <ul><li>Mispronounces, substitutes, omits, loses place in reading </li></ul><ul><li>Does not notice that her written work does not match a model </li></ul><ul><li>Doesn’t notice spacing, frequent erasures </li></ul><ul><li>For example, an upbeat, talkative, 4 th grader who thought she had done this assignment well </li></ul>
  27. 27. Finding the problem… can be a problem. <ul><li>But it drives interventions and </li></ul><ul><li>Allows rebuilding skills from where they were missed </li></ul><ul><li>It’s all a process and we’re all here to help! </li></ul>