These acronyms have used for so long without reference to their meaning, it might be good to start by referring to what these letters refer to. ADD stands for Attention Deficit Disorder, and ADHD stands for Attention Deficit Hyperactive Disorder. As "disorders", like "syndromes" and many conditions identified with the final letter "itis" (tonsillitis for example) the name refers to a symptomatic observation, not a condition of known cause. In the case of ADD/ADHD, there is much room for interpretation of observations, which are concerned with lack of attention to certain tasks, and difficulty maintaining physical composure in certain circumstances. Ultimately doctors, in particular psychiatrists and neurologists have the greatest diagnostic authority, while licensed professionals such as psychologists and LCSW's (licensed clinical social worker) also typically make such a diagnosis. The primary difference being treatment models: doctors are authorized to prescribe medication, psychologists and LCSW's focus on educational and a broader range of life factors.
Treatment of this condition, which commonly includes medication (typically stimulants) remains controversial given that the condition is principally identified by observed behavior, rather than being a medical condition. Because of the behavioral basis for identifying ADD/ADHD, "treatment" is mostly educational "intervention", and as such, falls into the expertise of teachers of Special Education and/or psychologists and licensed counselors.
I am a special education teacher, trained, credentialed and experienced in working with children of this diagnostic label, as well as being a team member with other professionals. I take as broad an approach as each individual circumstance allows, an approach that begins with consideration of the child as an individual.
The term dyslexia refers to certain common conditions, primarily in younger learners, that affect reading. It falls into a broader category of "learning disabilities," and is often considered, rightly or not, in combination with "attention deficit disorder." Neither is a disease, and like all impediments or challenges to learning, dyslexia is "treated" educationally with methods from special education training and practice.
I am a trained and experienced special education teacher, with teaching credentials in both Learning Handicaps and Severe Handicaps. Special education teacher training, with a large focus on reading and comprehension, offers methods for dealing with difficulties typically associated with dyslexia.
In addition to credentials in Special Education, I have a credential that includes Early Childhood Education, and grades K-12. I have a combination of experience working with elementary aged students in settings as tutor, private school and public schools. Kids generally do well with me.
I find that younger children do better with individual attention, and an instructional style that has a balance between demanding them to show what they are capable of and providing the necessary support for them to experience little successes along the way. Kids are by nature expressive and like to achieve. A positive experience brings this out of them.
English, a great language! That is, when it is your "servant" and not your "master". Most people aren't even aware of the amount of errors commonly made, for example, the newspapers are full of them! Therefore even reading printed material can be misleading if you expect it to be correct. Using spell checkers and grammar checkers when you write is always a good idea, but the best idea is to get tutored by a qualified teacher of English. I have taught English to foreigners for years, and have tutored school aged students and worked with college students in both English class and helping write papers, including theses. Fun, fun, fun!
The most important qualification I have for ESL is having passed the course required by Arizona'a teacher credentialing to teach ANY class here. This is a rigorous course to guarantee that all Arizona teachers can work effectively with "EL's" (English Learners). When living in South America I formally taught English to Spanish speakers, in an Institute, which included contract teacher for a major university (Universidad Catolica en Santiago, Chile).
I have been a computer user since the late 1980's, both Windows and Macintosh platform, and currently own both types. My skill base is broad, including many aspects of software. Aside from actual software usage, I know of alternatives to costly software, finding, downloading and installing software, and resources to learn to use software, in additional to training others. I have taught Basic Computing Skills for Adult Education, as well as Introduction to Microsoft Office. Personally I use almost exclusively free software, with the exception of a very reliable yet low cost maintenance and repair software. *** Aside from the the hardware and software side of my skills, I am an ORGANIZER. I can help you set up a simple-to-use logical file organization system as well as a more user-friendly computer.
I began using Macintosh with the Apple II line when I was a University student in the 80's. I have since owned, well, many. I currently use both Macintosh and Windows based computers at home. When teaching new Mac users who are already familiar with Windows I approach by first showing the similarities, for which there are many, as each operating system has been copying the other for years. In fact "modern" Windows is designed after the Macintosh operating system. Learning to use a Macintosh, including its special 'mouse pad' is easier that you'd imagine, just a few sessions and you'll feel comfortable on your own.
Microsoft Outlook is considered by many to be a necessary medicine to take. What?! Everybody loved Outlook Express, and then couldn't figure out why Microsoft gave it up. Well Outlook is just the natural outgrowth of the need to offer more functionality, and show progress. For those used to Outlook Express, or any of the many webmails, I teach starting from what you already know and build upon it. Outlook is like Express, but wearing a "new uniform." One does not need to learn its many functions to quickly master those you need. Once you can do what you need to, which will take little time to learn, then you can decide if you want to explore the expanded functionality that is available.
I began using Windows on the job with Windows 95. Since then it has progressively become more user friendly, more reliable, with endless convenience features. To be able to do what most people need to do, any of the currently popular versions (primarily XP and Windows 7)can be learned quickly. Once learning the basics, then one can, little-by-little enjoy the many built in functions to do more things, with more ease. I currently have 3 computers, on with XP, one with Vista and one with Windows 7. I can teach you any of these platforms.
I have worked with Microsoft Word through a variety of versions in both Windows and Macintosh systems. I teach what you need, and if you want to learn more, I continue offering increasing complexity. One can do quite a bit with Word that people often don't realize!
As a Special Education teacher credentialed in "Learning Handicapped" study of phonics is basic. As a student teacher I was required to demonstrate this ability in an elementary school classroom. Phonics "technology" and instruction are really very basic, once you are a trained teacher working with elementary age children. The follow-the-dots method of instruction is intuitive and well guided in all instructional materials. A qualified teacher of phonics, such as myself, is somebody who has learned to use these materials and has general teaching ability with youngsters!
I taught many years in the public school system as a Special Education teacher of both "learning and severely handicapped". I've worked extensively with students diagnosed ADHD, as well as autistic and other labels. I can help with study habits, organization skills, motivation, and behavioral issues.
I can as well tutor in any academic area using the student's instructional book/material, with a focus on the student's learning. When desirable I can correspond with school teachers in order to foster maximum school support in favor of the student, or to smooth out any home/school problems.
Students tend to get along with me. I have a style that is friendly, firm, reinforcing to a student's abilities, while working progressively toward their optimum performance. I build their success into my instructional style.
The area of Study Skills is addressed in teacher training in Special Education for mildly handicapped students. This is a credential I possess, yet more important is the experience I have assisting students in overcoming challenges in this area. Improvement of study skills is valuable for most students, though vital particularly with those who demonstrate qualities of ADD or ADHD. I have developed fairly specific techniques, which can be modified on an individual student basis, working with such things as creation of schedules, identifying problem areas in completing studies, and a variety of other factors that can be assessed and addressed. In most cases students need help creating a structure and support in working within that agreed upon structure. This is an area I excel in with proven skills.
I have worked with many foreigners to improve and/or perfect their English. While living overseas, I worked at an English institute where we specifically prepared students for the TOEFL. Depending upon the student's level and other circumstances I take distinct approaches. That is, I tailor my work to the individual needs of the learner.
With a Master's degree in Education and a degree in Philosophy, writing was central to my higher education. My work experience over the years provided a variety of opportunities to practice and develop those writing skills. In the past 10 years I have been teaching English directly, working with students of all ages in a variety of subjects, including language testing. I currently write for publication and thoroughly enjoy working with others in perfecting their writing skills.