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anyone else got a dc with poor auditory memory?

(23 Posts)
clumsymum Thu 19-Jul-07 14:21:51

After some problems with school behaviour this year, we sought the advice of an Ed. Psych.

DS has seen hiom for 2 sessions, and his initial views (including some tests of intellect), suggest that ds is fairly bright (general intellectual abilities up in the 90's percentile), but his short-term auditory memory lets him down (around the 60 percentile). This makes it difficult to follow multiple instructions, and may explain what his teacher sees as 'attention seeking' behaviour.

Ed psych says there may be some level of dyspraxia too (handwriting a problem, fine motor skills a bit poor for nearly 8 y.o.)

We are going to get more from the psych, but just woindered if anyone had any practical experience.

Bananaknickers Thu 19-Jul-07 15:29:00

Hi Clumsymum

My ds1 has this to , but he has dyslexia. I don't have any advise to give though sorry. Thought I would bump this.

I have learnt to give him one instruction at a time and put a hand on his shouler/ look him in the face when saying it. I am getting him a voice recorder for secondry school as someone suggested that this may help him ( providing he remembers to use it L.O.L)

He was always getting accused of being rude, not listening and being in his own little word. Breaks my heart too

virgo Thu 19-Jul-07 16:13:38

oh clumsymum and bananaknickers. ds (also 8) was assessed a year ago and has this too. Your posts are so comforting - you do feel like your on your own a bit with boys like these.

It makes for him really difficult. The teacher he has just had has been terrible about it. He's been kept on the lower ability tables beacuse of his poor concentration although she says he's capable of higher ability work. He's also ALWAYS being told off and now has really low self esteem.

We were told by the ed pyc to play memory games with him. I think its part and parcel of being a boy sometimes - he's just in his own little world too - always forgettng things but quite bright on a one on one and a great reader. I think he loves visual things.

clumsymum Thu 19-Jul-07 16:34:34

Virgo, yes my ds is a great reader too.

As far as your ds's teacher being awful with him, are school aware of his problem. Do you have a report from the psych to show them. your ds should be entitled to extra support (and the school can get funding to do that). Do you have any contact with the SENCO at school?
Our school have put some of these measures in place for , but while they were aware he needed help, I wanted a more formal 'diagnosis' for why my bright little boy needed this help to stay out of trouble.

Now of course I'm asking myself why he has these problems. (could be that glass of wine I had when I was 5 months pg ... not serious, just trying to put a light take on things).

We are already thinking of ways to help.

virgo Thu 19-Jul-07 23:31:15

The school are aware - I handed the ed psy report ot eh teacher - but I don't think he will get any extra help - there are so many children with sen's I didn't think he was serious enough but I'm not so sure now...

cba Thu 19-Jul-07 23:37:20

oh, auditory memory that sounds interesting. ds1 who is 6 and to go into year 2 in september is really bright, an excellent reader but does not seem to listen to the teacher at all. He seems to be in his own world at times and is so capable of much more. I may look into this.

clumsymum Fri 20-Jul-07 13:18:41

Virgo, I'm afraid you have to ask (sometimes fight) for extra support. Generally, in the state school system they don't offer.

However, If you feel that he needs extra support (and whayever other kids in the class need is irrelevant, your son is just as important), then press the school. They can apply for extra funding for each child who needs extra support, to help pay for more teaching assistants.

katepol Fri 20-Jul-07 13:37:44

Oh, this sounds a lot like my dd. Fluent reader from age 5, bright, and performing ok for age group, but less than teachers and us would expect. She is rubbish at 'listening', paying attention, following instructions, is regularly described as being 'away with the fairies'.
Anyon know a good website to investigate further?

clumsymum Fri 20-Jul-07 13:41:15

No, I've been searching, but found nothing useful.

Can your dd follow multiple instructions at home kate? If I ask ds to do 2 things, chances are he'll have to come back to me after the first to find out what the second task was.

clumsymum Fri 20-Jul-07 13:43:52

Virgo, the other point is about teacher keeping your ds on lower ability groups. That will backfire, because he's going to get bored, and less likely to participate in class, possibly becoming disruptive too.

You need to address that next term, I think.

beansontoast Fri 20-Jul-07 13:49:11

his class teacher will need to play to his strengths and acknowledge,recognise and adapt to his weaknesses.

so that may mean using classroom strategies to facilitate his understanding...eg using visual cues(written or picture instructions)...and giving instructions more slowly,sitting him nearer to the front of th eclass,getting his attention before giving him instructions etc etc.

i feel that my ds (nearly four)also has difficulty consistently attending to auditory information aswell...and worry about how he will cope when he gets to school.

virgo Fri 20-Jul-07 13:55:03

clumsymum - idential to my ds - he forgets multiple list of things to do - we are constantly reminding him to remember his own pe kit/pack lunch etc - but have to say these one at a time - its difficult to keep your own frustrations at bay sometimes though...

katepol Fri 20-Jul-07 13:58:27

Clumsy - dd often will need to have heard her name said before she will listen to any instruction. Anything with more than one stage will need repeating. Logic doesn't seem to come into it, she often seems confused by really simple things that her younger sister does straight away.
She is bright though! Reading and comprehending secret seven books, interested in science etc. Wide vocabulary, insightful.
The difference between what she can do, and how she presents is quite marked really.
I help out in her class every so often, and she rarely puts up her hand, quite often wanders around, seems to look to other children for clues. She faffs around for ages before starting a task, and finds physical things hard to do unless they are demonstrated...Again though, she is by no means behind in class, but just muddling along.
Can you descibe your dc more clumsy??

katepol Fri 20-Jul-07 13:59:54

Virgo - I am so guilty of shouting at dd all the time. It is like there is a wall of glass between her and the rest of the world sometimes, and it drives us mad!
I do feel bad, coz I know she doesn't mean to be so doolally, but it makes life very hard!

virgo Fri 20-Jul-07 14:04:39

katepol - all sounds VERY familiar - how old is she?

clumsymum Fri 20-Jul-07 14:09:47

DS is a very chatty, personable, bright little boy, who can be hugely infuriating.

He reads exceptionally well, has an immense verbal vocabulary, excellent table manners, good social skills in an adult environment (a pleasure to take to restaurants, for example).

But he has had terrible trouble at school, been described as "emotionally immature" because of toddler-style tantrums, we now believe caused by frustrations at not being able to cope.

He gets on well generally with other kids, altho prefers to be in charge, deciding what everyone should play.
His school report gives him good scores for everything academically, now that school has started to accommodate his needs. His head-teacher comments that it has been a difficult year, but he can improve if he tries.

He is a bit clumsy, finds joined-up writing a trial, can't get to grips with riding a bike, can trip over a matchstick. Loves swimming and is pretty competant at it.

katepol Fri 20-Jul-07 14:11:14

Virgo, my dd is 6. She had (undiagnosed) glue ear from about 18 months to about age 3, and we have always put her 'ways' down to being tuned out for all that time, so she got used to being in her own world, iykwim?
God, this thread is comforting to know there are others like her out there!

katepol Fri 20-Jul-07 14:15:34

Clumsy - my dd is clumsy too - it is a standing joke that she manages to fall off dining chairs with stunning regularity. She can swim, and has learn to ride a bike though (bribed her with a book!), but ask her to 'get out of the way' and she will invariably move in front of you and then trip over her own shadow lol!
She doesn't enjoy writing because it has to be joined up, and her teacher has said that she would expect her writing to be much better considering her skills in reading. I am surprised her spelling isn't better either, and she really is a total bookworm...

virgo Fri 20-Jul-07 14:20:50

clumsymum - I sometimes have a differnet take on all this - ie that we both have boys (and others have similar girls) that don't 'fit' the mould some primary school teachers (generally female!!0 wish our dc's to fit. ie to be bale to sit at a work table in groups and concentrate above the hubbub and noise of a class...to find 'boring' subjects interesting...to be eager to please...(I don't think this tactit even occurs to ds and why should it!)...hoepfully one day he'll have a teacher who really understands him and motivates him by giving lots of praise...I quite like that fact sometimes that he doesn't fit this mould!

Hallgerda Fri 20-Jul-07 14:43:56

virgo, I'm inclined to agree that there's an ever-tightening circle of supposed normality in which children are expected to fit. clumsymum, you say your DS is around the 60 percentile for short-term auditory memory - surely that means around 60% have a worse one?

katepol Fri 20-Jul-07 16:20:34

Hallgerda - I sort of know what you mean. There is a temptation though to label everything, like an excuse, kind of. However, if knowing more about how our children learn can help them and we can put effective strategies in place, it has to be a good thing I think...
I have been aware all this yr that dd does not learn well in the whole class environment, with a teacher who is disorganised (mind you who does!). Knowing about the existance of this auditory processing issue means that even if dd doesn't have it, there might be some useful lessons learned. I am off the google it all now...

clumsymum Sat 21-Jul-07 22:01:28

Katepol, interesting about the glue-ear. I discovered that ds was deaf on his left side, around the time of his 4th birthday. I was assured it was probably glue-ear, would solve itself as he grew out of it. I wasn't satisfied witha 'probably' diagnosis, fought for further tests and we discovered it was something called a cholesteatoma, a rare type of infected tumour that has eaten away the small bones in his left ear, leaving him permanently deaf on that side. I also wonder if this has had an effect on his auditory memory (as I don't know when he actually started to lose the hearing).

I get very angry as I constantly have to remind his teacher that he is deaf on the left, and finds hearing quite difficult in a noisy environment (like the classroom).

swedishmum Sun 22-Jul-07 09:26:28

I had an article about ideas to help - I'm pretty sure it was by Dr Linda Silverman from the Giftedness Development Center and is a bit American in approach(!) but can't find it now I'm afraid. I used a couple of the suggestions with my ds - making him look right at me when I give instructions, getting him to repeat a list back, playing a game where I send him on a mission round the house (given aurally) gradually building up the number of tasks to be done in the correct order.

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