Presentation on theme: "Welcome and Good Morning!"— Presentation transcript:
1Welcome and Good Morning! (207)web: kaufmanpsychological.org
2From Brain to Pen to Paper . . . The Neuropsychology of Writing & Best Practice Instructional RecommendationsDay 1
3Myths to be exploded across these two days . . ‘Writing is just a written extension of oral language.’‘If kids can speak well and use a pencil, they should be able to write well.’‘Most kids who fail to write up to their potential lack motivation – they’re lazy.’
4What’s at stake . .We’d need only to try and imagine the enormous changes in the cultural development of children that occur as a result of mastery of written language and the ability to read – and thus becoming aware of everything that human genius has created in the realm of the written word.-- Lev Vygotsky
5What’s at stake . .According to a 2006 survey, 81 percent of employers describe recent high school graduates as “deficient in written communications” such asmemo, letters, and technical reports (Casner-Lotto & Barrington, 2006). As a result, private companies are spending an estimated $3.1 billion per year—and state governments are investing another $200 million—to provide writing instruction to their employees (National Commission on Writing, 2004; 2005).
6What’s at stake . .The National Assessment of Educational Progress (NAEP, or “the Nation’s Report Card”) writing exam was last given in 2002; it measured the writing skills of fourth, eighth, andtwelfth graders and translated their scores into three levels of proficiency: basic, proficient, and advanced. Across the three grades, only 22–29 percent of students scored at the proficient level, and only 2 percent were found to write at the advanced level (Persky et al., 2003). In other words, 70–75 percent of students were found to be writingbelow grade level.
7Two-Day Agenda Day 1 (March 21) Day 2 (March 22) 8:30 Welcome/Introduction8:45 Why Writing Can Be So Bloody Difficult and the Skill Components of Writing10:00 (Morning Break)10:15 The Neuropsychology of Writing I (Attention/Executive Functioning & Memory Processing)12:00 Lunch1:00 Strategies & Implications for Instruction I2:00 (Afternoon Break)2:15 More Strategies3:00 General Discussion/Q & A8:30 Quick Review of Yesterday . .8:45 The Neuropsychology of Writing II (Dyslexia/Dysgraphia)10:00 (Morning Break)10:15 The Linguistic and Grapho-Motor Elements of Writing12:00 Lunch1:00 Strategies & Implications for Instruction II2:00 (Afternoon Break)2:15 More Strategies3:00 General Discussion/Q & A3:30 Adjourn
8Why writing can be so bloody difficult . . Part 1Why writing can be so bloody difficult . .
9Although many students acknowledge that writing is important and directly related to success in school and life, the thought of writing often evokes feelings of stress, anxiety, dread, and avoidance.L. M. Cleary
12“I love being a writer. What I can’t stand is the paperwork” Peter De VriesMy writing speed is akin to head stone carving . . .Gloria Steinham
13And from Gene FowlerWriting easy – All you do is sit staring at a blank sheet of paper until drops of blood form on your forehead . . .
14Writing . .From the early formation of letters to crafting an essay, writing involves perhaps more sub skills than any other academic task. To write well requires combining multiple physical and mental processes in one concerted effort to communicate information and ideas. For instance, we must be able to move a pen or press a key, precisely and fluidly to produce letters, remember the rules of grammar and syntax, place out thoughts in an order that makes sense, and think ahead to what we want to write next. This combination of tasks makes writing the highest form and more complex use of language.-- Mel Levine
15WritingThis combination of tasks makes writing the highest form and more complex use of language.-- Mel Levine
16The simple truth: Writing, from a neurobehavioral perspective, is incredibly complex and hard!! Involves the fluid and simultaneous (!!) coordination of the following core skill areas:word knowledge, retrieval, and sequencingworking memory, sustained attention, planning, organizationspelling, punctuation, and grammarvisual/spatial functioningfine-motor/grapho-motor functioninghigher order reasoning/cognition
17Key Distinctions Between Spoken and Written Comprehension Often more formal/structuredMakes use of words and styles that are not common in the speech of children and teensWritten language does not gauge the reader’s comprehension and fill in gaps/resolve confusionComprehension of writing is often dependent on strategic processing.Thus, written language is not ‘speech written down.’Spoken:CasualMakes use of common slang and colloquialismsSupported by the speaker (the speaker fills in any knowledge gaps the listener might have)Can be understood in the absence of strategiesOakhill & Cain, 2007
18Activity 1Please . .. . list all the skill elements (mechanical/conventional, spontaneous/ideational/executive) of the writing process.
19To become competent writers, students must: Become proficient in spelling, punctuation, and grammar;They must learn to write in various styles and formats (depending on the particular situation/audience);They must build strong vocabularies and deep reservoirs of background knowledge;They must learn to cope with writer’s block and develop the stamina needed to get through long and difficult assignments (writers’ resiliency);They must learn strategies (such as preparing outlines, soliciting feedback, and writing/revising multiple drafts that help them to organize their writing projects and complete them successfully.
20The Five Stages of the Writing Process Prewriting (brainstorming, planning, sequencing/organizing, etc.)Drafting (writing the initial draft)Revising (content-oriented revision/correction)Editing (proofreading and mechanical revision/correction)Publishing (preparation of the final draft in its final form)
21Vicki Spandel’s 6 + 1 Traits 1. Ideas/Content 2. Organization 3. Voice (personal tone/flavor; personality) 4. Word Choice (specificity/exactness of language) 5. Sentence Fluency (rhythm/flow of language) 6. Conventions (mechanics; e.g., spelling, punctuation, capitalization) + 1 Presentation (the visual/verbal presentation of the final piece on paper)
22Writing Ability & the Neurodevelopmental Functions: Spatial-MotorComprehending the spatial relationshipsinvolved in letter/word production;coordinating small muscles ofthe fingers needed to form lettersAttentionMaintaining concentration &self-monitor work qualityMemoryFluid recall of letters,rules, and ideas;simultaneous holding ofall of this in workingmemoryWRITINGExecutive FunctioningGenerating ideas & taking astepwise approach to planning,organizing, and revising workLanguage ProductionUsing words and constructingsentences correctly
24Breakdowns in one or more of these processes can lead to . . Dysgraphia: A disorder of written expression – there are ‘language-based’ and ‘non-language-based’ types of dysgraphia (4 – 17% of the population, Hooper et al., 1994)A ‘shadow syndrome’ of a writing disorder: ‘Sub-clinical‘ elements of a writing disorder that make the writing process arduous/tedious (??% of the population – certainly LOTS of kids . .)
25Activity 2Please . .. . Pick a kid and complete the first part of the Personal Case Study Form.
26Graham & Harris (2005) have found . . Most elementary teachers advocate structure/routine in teaching the writing process (i.e., ‘Writer’s Workshop’ programs)BUT, many teachers rely on informal (or incidental) teaching methods to teach planning, drafting, editing, and publishingBottom line: Many (most?) teachers fail to explicitly teach writing process strategies
27Another instructional problem Eclectic instructional methodologies from class to class and grade to gradeLeads to a lack of continuity in writing process instructionLeads to kids getting mixed writing messages
28Another key research finding Younger kids and LD kids rely on ‘knowledge telling’ as a writing strategy.This approach is limited to content generation (‘This is what I know about this topic’)Involves little planning (kids are just ‘winging it’ or making it up as they go)I think kids should choosetheir own pets, becausewhatever pet they wanttheir mother can just get itfor them.Third grader with LD(Graham & Harris, 2005)
33Left versus Right Hemispheres SequentialProcessingFactualVerbalRoutine and‘Over-Learned’Info ProcessedHere!SimultaneousProcessingSyntheticEmotionalContentNovelInfo ProcessedHere!
34Input vs. Output Regions of the Cortex &Sensory Processing& StorageOutput&Self-Direction
35Executive Functioning and Writing: A basic fact well-known to teachers . .SO MANY KIDS WITH ATTENTION DEFICITS HATE TO WRITE!
36Executive Functioning Refers to the ability to regulate and direct one’s emotions/behavior and to plan, initiate, attend to, and organize tasksImpact on writing is huge
37Pre-Frontal Cortex: Site of Attention and Executive Function
38Frontal Lobe Specifics (Adapted from Hale & Fiorello, 2004) Motor CortexPrefrontal Cortex(Dorsolateral)PlanningStrategizingSustained AttentionFlexibilitySelf-MonitoringOrbital PrefrontalImpulse Control(behavioral inhibition)Emotional Modulation
39Executive functioning and writing No academic task requires more executive functioning efficiency than writingWriting, after all, is all about self-direction and self-regulation of the product on the pageFor younger children and older kids with limited grapho-motor skill, there are fewer cognitive resources left to the complex task of organizing and developing thoughts on paper.
40Logical extrapolation A Key FactKids with EF weakness tend to struggle with identifying text structure when they read.Logical extrapolationDifficulty identifying text structure (e.g,. somebody-wanted-but-so) also impacts the writing of kids with EF weakness!!!
41Task Persistence and Frustration Tolerance Two essential EF’s related to the writing process!!
42Recursive Writing Cycle (With Developmentally Appropriate Levels of EF) Pre-Writing PhaseAdequate EF skill allows:Task AnalysisSchema/Prior Knowledge ActivationBrainstormingThought Sequencing/OrganizationAdequate writing confidence andmotivation to engage in writingWriting PhaseAdequate EF (particularly WM) skill andmechanical automaticity allows:Fluent transfer of ideas to textSimultaneous processing of ideationaland mechanical aspects of writingRevising and editing of text as it is produced(revising ‘on the fly’)Persistence and motivation to continueRevision/Editing PhaseAdequate EF skill allows:Deep processing of one’s writing (suchthat content revision is possible)Awareness/recognition of one’s errorpatternsCareful scrutiny of written work andcorrection of all (or at least most) errorsPersistence and motivation to continue
43Recursive Writing Cycle (As Impacted by Executive Dysfunction) Pre-Writing PhaseEF weakness contributes to:Poor task analysis (‘What are wesupposed to again?’)Little to know brainstorming or thoughtorganization (just jumps intowriting, using ‘knowledge telling’ approach)Minimal writing confidence (desire to avoidwriting)Writing PhaseEF weakness land a lack of mechanical skillAutomaticity contribute to:WM easily overloaded by simultaneousideational and mechanical writing demandsMinimal writingWriting that includes numerous content and/ormechanical errorsVery limited ability to revise/edit ‘on the fly’Limited persistence and frustration tolerance(desire to be done as soon as possible)Revision/Editing PhaseEF weakness contributes to:Superficial processing of one’s textDisregard of mechanical and contenterrorsVery limited motivation to revise andextend writingLimited persistence/frustration tolerance(very limited willingness to revise/edit)
44Activity 2Please take a moment to consider and jot down one or a few of the key instructional implications of the impact of attention/EF weakness on the writing process.Briefly share/discuss your thoughts with those seated around you.
46The Three Primary Levels of Memory: Short-Term Memory (STM): The briefest of memories – information is held for a few seconds before being discardedWorking Memory (WM): The ability to ‘hold’ several facts or thoughts in memory temporarily while solving a problem or task – in a sense, it’s STM put to work.Long-Term Memory (LTM): Information and experiences stored in the brain over longer periods of time (hours to forever)
49Working Memory: Some kids have got ‘leaky buckets’ Levine: Some kids are blessed with large, ‘leak proof,’ working memoriesOthers are born with small WM’s that leak out info before it can be processed
50A Working Memory Brain Teaser! Activity 3A Working Memory Brain Teaser!I am a small parasite. Add one letter and I am a thin piece of wood. Change one letter and I am a vertical heap. Change another letter and I am a roughly built hut. Change one final letter and I am a large fish. What was I and what did I become?
51Writing definitely requires . . Memory of the future!!
52How Large is the Child’s Working Memory Bucket? Case 3: FrankieForgetaboutitCase 1: Rachel RecallsitallCase 2: Nicky Normal
53Large working memory capacity allows for lots of simultaneous processing! SequentialProcessingSimultaneous Processing‘CognitiveBand Width’LargeWMLotsLittleSmallWM
54Free Recall versus Cued Recall of Information Free recall of previously learning information occurs in the absence of explicit cueingCued recall occurs in the presence of explicit memory prompts
55A Key Point:Many kids have a hard time searching their own memories for the language and other info they need when writing.
56Is it any wonder so many kids meltdown in writing contexts? Not understanding their memory and executive functioning deficits, kids come to view themselves as “stupid,” and to view writing tasks as horribly frightening and arduous.So the presentation of a writing prompt leads to ‘ka-boom!’
59IMPLICATIONS FOR INSTRUCTION Best Practice Recommendations
60Activity 4On your own, or, if you’d prefer, with your neighbor or in a small group, brainstorm what you consider the essential instructional implications of working memory and executive functioning challenges for developing writers at the grade level(s) you teach.
61Seeing molehills as mountains Impossible!Annoying,but doable
62Core Strategy Principle 1: THE EXPLICIT TEACHINGOF THE WRITING PROCESS IS GOOD.
63Explicit Teacher Modeling and Gradual Release of Responsibility Teacher modeling of writing strategies in whole group settings makes the implicit explicit for all kidsBest to also model likely problems/mistakes and ways to cope with them!!Gradual release (teacher models, small group practice, individual practice) can be very effective for kids with EF weakness
64Core Strategy Principle 2: Acknowledge with students that writing can be hard (and then show them ways to make it easier!)
65Self-Regulated Writing Instruction (SRSD) (Graham & Harris) Develop background knowledge (teacher)Discuss the strategy (teacher)Model the strategy (teacher)Memorize the strategy (students)Support the strategy (teacher)Independent performance (students)(Harris et al., 2008)
66I always do the first line well, but have trouble with the others . . -- Moliere.
67So, the overall ‘best practice’ writing recommendation is . . EXPLICITLY TEACH THE WRITING PROCESSElaborate and build on this in a consistent manner from grade to gradeYounger kids and LD kids won’t plan on their own: they need lots of explicit modeling and practiceKids should always be required to do some bit of structured planning before they write (‘gather your thoughts’)
68Explicit Teacher Modeling and Gradual Release of Responsibility Teacher modeling of writing strategies in whole group settings makes the implicit explicit for all kidsBest to also model likely problems/mistakes and ways to cope with them!!Gradual release (teacher models, small group practice, individual practice) can be very effective for kids with EF weakness
69A Core Recommendation: Build Writing Fluency with Power Writing A daily fluency building techniqueConsists of brief timed writing eventsIn each one-minute interval, students are told to write as much as they can about a specified topicThe one-minute intervals are performed up to 3 times in a rowUsually kids are told to include one or more key words in their writingKids graph their progress (accuracy and length)Fisher & Frey, 2007
71Key phrase to remember for ADHD/EFD Kids ‘SurrogateFrontalLobe’
72An essential EF-related writing fact: Picking, deciding, choosing, and selecting are all executive skills!
73And so . . Remove the picking challenge! Decide for them (as practical) by limiting choicesHelp kids develop possible writing topics well in advance of the need to write (see attached ‘Like-Hate’ and ‘Usual-Unusual’ T Chart’ examples)
74Helpful metaphor to teach pre-writing: Gather Your Thoughts ideaideaideaideaideaideaThen Write
75Rubrics/Heuristics Rock! P.O.W.C-S.P.A.C.E.Stop and L.I.S.T.B.O.T.E.C.Step Up To WritingSomebody Wanted . . But So . . .
76Graphic Organizers: A double edged sword . . . Great way to build previewing and planning skill (story webs, story maps, Venn diagrams, etc.)But, they are often perceived by ADHD kids as “MORE WORK” (“I have to do that and then write?!”)If these are used, consider allowing kids to hand them in as a completed product or give them lots of support in their use.Consider using the Peggy McPhee approach instead, which relies on giving kids a series of specific prompts/questions to answer (eliminates the blank page phenomenon)
79P.O.W. (Graham & Harris) Pick my idea Organize my thoughts 1. ___________2. ___________3. ___________Write and say more
80C-SPACE (Harris et al., 2008) Characters Setting (time and place) Purpose (What the main character tries to do . .)Action (What is done to achieve the goal)Conclusion (Results of the action)Emotions (The main characters’ reactions and feelings)
81TREE (Harris et al., 2008) Topic (topic sentence) Reasons (at least 3) Explain (each reason)Ending (wrap it up)
82STOP & LIST (Graham & Harris, 2005) (Goal setting, brainstorming, organization) Step 1: Stop (students should set goals for their writing; e.g., writing a funny story to share during circle time)Step 2: LIST (Brainstorm ideas and list them out)Step 3: Sequence (Organize the ideas into a logical sequence and then number them)Step 4: Write (‘By the number’s)
83Bashir and Singer’s EmPower approach EvaluateMake a PlanOrganizeWorkRework
90Consider Using the Step Up to Writing program (or something like it) Developed by Maureen AumanPublished by Sopris WestGreat way to help ADHD/EFD kids learn how to construct and organize paragraphs and essaysWonderfully concrete and explicit!
91GO! Slow Down! Stop! Go Back! Write a topic sentence Give a reason, detail, or factStop!Explain – give an exampleGo Back!Remind the reader of your topic
92What Makes a Great Teacher? A good teacher does two things. She makes the classroom nice. A good teacher has lots of books for us to look at and posters on the wall. A good teacher also teaches us newthings. She lets us learn about other countries and experiments in science. Teachers are the most important part of school.
93Reasons for Learning to Swim Learning to swim is an essential skill for all children. One reasonto learn to be a strong swimmer is safety. If you are in adangerous situation, such as in a sinking raft or boat, you canswim to shore. If you are a good swimmer, you can also helpsave others who may be drowning. Being able to spend timewith others is another reason for learning to swim. Birthday and school year-end parties are often located around the pool. Many people plan their vacations for warmer climates so that happy hours may be spent splashing in the ocean. The heat ofsummer makes us all want to cool off by enjoying watersports, such as waterskiing, diving, and surfing. Learning to bea great swimmer can clearly make your life safer and moreenjoyable.
95Defeating the dreaded ‘blank page’ phenomenon: Providing kids with specific prompts/sentence startersOriginal assignment:Pick your favorite fairy tale and develop a ‘fractured’ version of it. Make sure you also make at least three illustrations and show in your writing how the main characters resolve an essential conflictModified assignment:List the five main characters in CinderellaWhere does the story take place?What was Cinderella’s main problem? What was she doing to cope with it?What might be some funny ways to change the story?How would one of those changes change the ending?95
96Reading & Writing Sourcebooks (a strong, scaffolded, literacy skill development curriculum)Wonderfully scaffolded (for both reading and writing)Clearly links the writing process to the reading comp processFocuses (concretely) on pre-writing (“Gathering Your Thoughts”)Keeps writing anxiety low (assignments are limited in length, but have a clear instructional intent)(Houghton Mifflin)
97Reading & Writing Sourcebook in Action GATHER YOUR THOUGHTSDirections:1. Think about 4 special people who havehad a positive impact on your life (write theirnames in the red boxes).2. Then narrow your focus. Which one do you want towrite about? Write that person’s name in the first green box.3. Write three reasons why that person has been special toyou (in the big green boxes).
98GATHER YOUR THOUGHTS Person: Person: Person: Person: Person I will write about:He/she is special because:He/she is special because:He/she is special because:
99A Really Special Person in My Life . . . Directions:1. Write a paragraph of at least 5 sentences describingthe special person mentioned in your organizer. Be sure to saythe person’s name in the first sentence and how you know them.Also make sure to include the 3 (or more) details from yourorganizer (the reasons that this person is special to you), andinclude an ending sentence that sums up how you feel about thisperson today.2. When you’ve finished, use the Writer’s Checklist (C.O.P.S.)to help you revise.Adapted from the Reading & Writing Sourcebook)
100The acronym editing strategies: S.C.O.P.E. and C.O.P.S. CapitalizationOrganization (or ‘order’ or ‘appearance’)PunctuationSpellingSCOPES – Spelling ok?C – First words, proper names, and nouns capitalized?O – Syntax (word order) correct?P – Punctuation marks where needed?E – Do all the sentences express a complete thought?Concern: Are these rubrics too focused on surface features of text?
101More Accommodations/By-Pass Strategies for EFD Kids Let ‘em dictate first drafts of longer piecesAssist the student with organizing/ordering brain stormed ideasBreak assignments down into smaller chunksLots of check in’s an attentional promptsAllow the student to work on a keyboarding device