MYTHS ABOUT LEARNING DIFFERENCES:
Learning differences mean the same thing as intellectual disabilities.
FALSE! Learning differences are educational challenges unrelated to IQ level. LD is not correlated with low intelligence. In fact, many children with learning differences have an above-average or high-level IQ.
Kids with learning differences are just lazy or unmotivated.
FALSE! Learning differences are not a character flaw or due to lack of effort. Most students with LD work hard but still struggle with schoolwork. They typically become frustrated with school and develop low self-esteem.
Having the right glasses can fix the problem.
FALSE! A learning difference like dyslexia is not a visual problem; it's a brain-based disorder.
Children with learning differences will never be successful adults.
FALSE! Many famous people, such as Walt Disney, Stephen Spielberg, Henry Winkler, and General George Patten, have struggled with learning differences. Many entrepreneurs and inventors both think and learn differently.
Learning differences are only a problem during the school-aged years.
FALSE! When someone struggles with learning differences without success during childhood, he or she may continue to have issues in the workplace and in personal relationships.
TYPES OF LEARNING DIFFERENCES
At Bachman Academy, we serve students in grades 6-12 with a variety of LEARNING DIFFERENCES and other EDUCATIONAL CHALLENGES. Unlike some schools that may focus strictly on dyslexia, or exclude students with ASD or non-verbal learning differences, we offer flexibility and support to many families struggling with the following issues:
DYSLEXIA - makes letters appear scrambled or backwards. However, this is a language-based brain disorder, not a visual problem. Learning intervention methods can help students process written and spoken language.
DYSCALCULIA - makes it difficult to understand numbers and math concepts. Hands-on, tactile activities help students understand mathematical problems. Like dyslexia, this is a brain-based disorder, not a visual issue.
DYSGRAPHIA - makes written communication difficult. Students with this issue may struggle to hold a pencil, draw simple sketches, form letters, and organize written thoughts. Students may benefit from using assistive technology, such as voice-recognition software and laptop applications.
ATTENTION DEFICIT DISORDER/ATTENTION DEFICIT HYPERACTIVITY DISORDER - makes it difficult to focus and concentrate. Technically, ADD/ADHD is an attention disorder, not a learning difference. Students with the hyperactivity component struggle with impulse control. ADD/ADHD often co-occurs with learning differences.
EXECUTIVE FUNCTIONING DEFICIT - makes it difficult to manage and complete tasks independently. Good executive functioning acts as the cornerstone of success because it consists of problem-solving, organizing, sequencing, strategic thinking, time management, and other key skills. Development of executive functioning is of paramount importance at Bachman Academy.
LOW OR SLOW MEMORY PROCESSING - makes it difficult to remember and recall information learned or to work through problems quickly. Our brain-based intervention programs have been proven to raise memory retention and processing speed.
NONVERBAL LEARNING DISABILITIES - affects social skills because students miss social cues and body language. They can't recognize tone, irony, or humor. Bachman provides a safe and welcoming social environment where students can develop positive relationships and grow more comfortable with interpersonal communication.
AUTISM SPECTRUM DISORDER (ASD) - presents an array of challenges in social skills, communication, and behavior. While Bachman Academy is not the right fit for anyone with severe behavioral problems or intellectual disabilities, many students with ASD thrive at our school.
BACHMAN ACADEMY IS NOT A THERAPEUTIC SCHOOL, BUT WE ARE A TRANSFORMATIVE PLACE.
We address the mind, body, and spirit of our students. We are a place where the unique strengths of each individual can shine. A student gifted in math but struggling with social issues can tutor a classmate, gaining self-confidence. A student with an outgoing personality but significant learning differences can befriend peers with ASD, developing leadership qualities.
At Bachman Academy, we exist to help students learn how to learn independently. This sets us apart from most traditional schools, which focus on content mastery and test scores. Instead, we stress the development and refinement of executive functioning skills.
We understand that there are a variety of learning styles. In addition, there are educational strategies and assistive technology to hlep students who are struggling. We personalize the approach to learning based on a number of factors, including the student's learning style.
MAIN LEARNING STYLES
VISUAL - image-based, spatial understanding
AURAL- acoustic, hearing-based
KINESTHETIC - hands-on, tactile-based
VERBAL - speech and writing-based
MATHEMATICAL - logic and reasoning-based
INTERPERSONAL - learning and functioning within a group
INTRAPERSONAL - learning and functioning independently