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Saturday, March 03, 2007


Nancy Hansen Merbitz, Ph.D.

I read some of your posts on education and reading instruction with great interest. Are you familiar with Direct Instruction? (probably yes, I'm guessing) Are you familiar with Precision Teaching? (probably not, I'm guessing) PT is a system of measurement-guided instruction that is not based on a particular curriculum (altho often uses DI materials). It is an off-shoot of applied behavior analysis that focuses on the child's individual response to material and methods. It gets kids involved in tracking their own performance, and takes data everyday, usually several times. It is the utmost in curriculum-based assessment, except it started in the 1960s (from a fellow named Ogden Lindsley, a student of Skinner's). If I've caught any interest at all, try going to and then there are lots of further links there. A few PT schools exist, and many PT learning centers. They are fun places to visit - kids are happy, teachers are focused on education, and behavior is not a "problem" to be eliminated but a repertoire to be increased. Friends of mine have a learning center here in Chicagoland, and I have personally seen them have astounding results with a variety of learners, including kids with autism or history of severe early trauma. Feel free to write me [email protected] Another good idea would be to sign on to the PT listserver (instructions are at I'm on a variety of listserves but this is the best and most friendly one (almost without exception). When a new member, especially a parent or teacher, signs on with questions, many "old hands" are ready to pitch in with information and specific suggestions as needed.
bye for now - I'm going to go put your blog address on that listserve (as well as the DI listserve) and encourage them to come take a look! Maybe it's already a famous blog, I don't know :>)

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