SPEAKING OF CHILDREN: Their Learning Abilities/Disabilities by Careth Ellingson

SPEAKING OF CHILDREN: Their Learning Abilities/Disabilities

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KIRKUS REVIEW

Ellingson uses all the labels -- perceptual handicap, brain injury, minimal brain dysfunction, dyslexia -- that Engelmann (below) considers an evasion of teacher responsibility, and though he too advocates behavior modification techniques in the classroom, here operant conditioning is just one approach deemed useful in dealing with children who have learning disabilities. Another is chemotherapy, including the highly controversial dispensing of stimulants to those classed as hyperkinetic. (""If your child were a diabetic, would you deny him the use of insulin?"") Ellingson's description of symptoms and behavior patterns and his recommendations for parental management follow the accepted line on m.b.d, children, and mostly this is an explanation for parents of the established, but still fuzzy, criteria used to classify them -- perceptual limitations, unproductive ""cognitive styles,"" developmental anomalies, etc. But Brutten's Something's Wrong with My Child (KR, 1973) gives parents all of that plus far more supportive advice on dealing with the many infuriating professionals who stand between your child and help. Ellingson provides detailed and extensive excerpts from diagnostic tests on the one hand, and long lists of basic skills to be acquired in school on the other, but never indicates how all this sophisticated analysis helps gear the actual teaching to the particular needs.

Pub Date: March 1st, 1975
Publisher: Harper & Row