A few years ago I met Barb, a high school special education teacher. Barb had heard about Young Rembrandts and wondered how her special needs students would respond to our step-by-step method of teaching art. After some conversation about her students’ needs and our philosophy, we agreed to teach a series of four weekly classes. The classes surpassed all of our expectations. The students were fully engaged, successfully completed every drawing and were pleased to have been participants in art class. In Chapter Five of Being Visual, I share details about the initial fears of the teaching assistants, the experiences in the classrooms, our observations and our teaching method.
As a parent, it is heartbreaking to see your children struggle. We want the best for our kids and often turn ourselves inside out to give them every opportunity to succeed. But what about a child that can’t read? How does a child with dyslexia feel when they’re labeled—stupid, lazy, or mentally slow? And yet you know that’s not who they are. You see how bright they are and how hard they work.
After a long summer filled with a variety of activities, it’s time for kids to head back to the classroom. Unfortunately, for many kids this means a lot of time sitting in chairs and listening. If your child has trouble paying attention, gets fidgety, displays disruptive behavior, makes careless mistakes, has difficulty organizing and completing assignments—they may be recommended for an ADD evaluation. It extremely important to find out what’s distracting them, but rest assured, it may have nothing to do with ADD.
As you may remember, adolescence can be a joyful time, a heartbreaking time, or often a combination of both. What to wear to school, which classes to take, to obey the rules or not – teenagers are bombarded with a never-ending list of some of life’s greatest questions. As a parent, you take on the responsibility of pointing your children in the right direction and helping them see which path leads in the right direction.