THE HIDDEN HANDICAP: Helping the Marginally Learning Disabled from Infancy to Young Adulthood by Judith Ehre Kranes

THE HIDDEN HANDICAP: Helping the Marginally Learning Disabled from Infancy to Young Adulthood

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KIRKUS REVIEW

Dr. Kranes runs NYU's Para-Education Center for Young Adults (PEC), where teenagers with learning disabilities are trained as nursery school aides. Here she examines the circumstances of learning-disabled children, shows how home and school can best serve them and how the PEC program in particular is geared to their needs. Kranes' population includes those who test in the 75-95 IQ range and who have perceptual problems and difficulty in thinking abstractly--a small fraction of the overall population but a group represented in virtually all public schools. Although in young adulthood they often lack such basic survival skills as making change, telling time, or using a telephone book, most can learn them in a modified classroom setting and many can learn to function independently--away from home (PEC relies on a Salvation Army residence) and on the job. Kranes' program selects and trains those who enjoy young children and are motivated to support themselves, but her observations about the group in general ring true. She offers fewer specific ideas for parents than Betty Osman in Learning Disabilities: A Family Affair (which describes a larger, more capable population), but those that she offers are built on appropriate recognitions and take into account the strategies of the marginally learning-disabled, such as a greater dependence on memorization. A modest but well-founded introduction from a cautious spokesperson.

Pub Date: March 25th, 1980
Publisher: Simon & Schuster