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Saturday, July 03, 2004

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Cheryl Allis

With just a ten minute search on the web I turned up at least three more organizations that use "Structures of Intellect" (SOI) assesments developed by J P Guilford.
Briges learning programs at www.bridgeslearning.com, Tools for Learning at www.toolsforlearning.com, and the Job Core. Surely a more in-depth search would turn up other places throughout the country where it is used.

Mira Halpert M.Ed.

We respect your comments and would like to make the following comments:

We agree with your comment that not all dyslexics learn best when they see and experience information and that is why we use an effective assessment

- We are NOT the only ones that use the SOI® Assessment, but we have found it to be the best value for parents and students. The SOI Assessment (R) developed by Dr. JP Guilford has been used by thousands of schools and hundreds of thousand of students-- more information is available at www.soisystems.com. A principal in Boca Raton recently said "We used the SOI Assessment for years and it was the best assessment we ever used". The challenge was that federal law required them to find out what was wrong with the student while the SOI identifies:
- How the student learns best
- Their learning strengths and issues
- Whether they have underlying vision and/or auditory issues


- Dr. Reid Lyons, Director of the National Institute of Child Development, and other luminaries made the following comments about assessments, "Given what we now know about Learning Disabilities it is inappropriate to continue with present assessment practices" The document I reference was used by the Bush Administration in formulating policy and it can be found at http://www.fordhamfoundation.org/library/special_ed/special_ed_ch12.pdf

We now have two schools that we have established formal relationships with based on the performance of their students who have participated in our program who are using both the SOI Assessment and our program.

Even though we have excellent anecdotal evidence from hundreds of students we recognize the need for formal studies.

We have one study that has already begun and have one more planned this year. The hypothesis is that with our methods we can dramatically improve reading comprehension, standardized test scores, attention and self-esteem. We will be using University based professionals to evaluate the program and will provide both quantitative and qualitative measures of progress.

For parents who want more information, we encourage them to visit our website at www.3dlearner.com, take our Free Screening Tool and then you can learn more about us


We can say that many parents who have spent thousands elsewhere have commented that
"Your assessment was more valuable than the $3000 assessment we got from our psychologist. We found out our daughter learned best when she saw and experienced information, that she was smarter than we had previously thought and that she had a vision issue the eye doctor had missed. Her progress in reading and self-esteem is amazing"

"The vision therapy you recommend based on the SOI was very helpful and your program was spectacular. My son's reading has gone from the 17th to the 84th percentile in two years, his writing and math are much better and his self-esteem has soared -- thanks"

We respect your input, welcome the opportunity to share our thoughts, and totally agree with the need for more research. We do want to emphasize that we offer a holistic approach to working with students, their parents and teachers. We often train the parents as much as the student so that they learn how to best coach them and advocate for services. We work WITH many professionals and are constantly updating and learning positive approaches to having ALL students succeed. We too have been trained by Dr. Mel Levine and his team at “All Kinds of Minds” – their assessment and demystification process is excellent. We really focus more on the “NOW WHAT DO WE DO WITH ALL THE INFO” overload that parents often get. With so much focus on what they can’t do, we try to show parents, students (and teachers) how to use their abilities to learn and succeed in school.

LM

The 3DLearner Process was pieced together by Mira Halpert herself. Therefore, it is available only locally (Coral Springs, FL), and is not replicated in other parts of the country. Since it is not an established, nationally recognized program, you won't find many testimonials on message boards. They have a "slick" website, but basically it is a "mom and pop" business.

Mrs. Halpert means well, and is sincere in wanting to help children with reading difficulties. However, her process does not provide all of the skills and strategies needed for learning to read. Mrs. Halpert's philosophy is that phonics approaches do not work for dyslexics, which is not true. The National Institute of Child and Human development has done years of research and has actually found that phonemic awareness (understanding that words are made up of individual sounds)is a necessary foundation for learning to read; and that SYSTEMATIC phonics instruction is necessary for teaching children to read. (www.nichd.nih.gov/reading.htm) These are even more important for children with reading difficulties.

While some of the characteristics found in the "tests" on the "3DLearner" website are associated with dyslexia, these are not true TESTS for dyslexia. In addition, not all individuals with dyslexia are "3D learners".

For more research based informaton regarding dyslexia, you can go to www.interdys.org. However, "You can lead a horse to water, but you can't make them drink it.

KDB

I have been interested in the 3D Learning program for over two years now. My son has auditory processing learning disabilities. I am also back in college and realizing I too have the same disability. While my son's struggle is primarily with reading, mine is with math. He and I are both visual, experential, tactile learners. Perhaps all of us are not 3D learners but for those of us who are, this program is an excellent source. I speak from living the experience. For auditory processors, phonetics do not work because there is no way to recall it to the for front of the mind. As for myself with math, unless I can get a visual picture in my head, I cannot recall proper mathematic equations. So while 3D learning may not work for everyone it is extremely fundamental for people like myself and my son.

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