Addressing Learning Disabilities and Difficulties: How to Reach and Teach Every Student

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Gilbert Guerin, Mary C. Male
Corwin Press, Nov 2, 2005 - Education - 168 pages
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Emphasizing the importance of the general education classroom as the primary learning environment for students who have learning disabilities, this book offers best practices and policies that will enable students with learning disabilities to not only participate but also excel in the general education classroom.

Since its first printing in 1994, this book has been one of the most popular publications of the California Department of Education, Special Education Division.

The book covers:

o Distinguishing learning difficulties from learning disabilities;

o General screening strategies for specific learning disabilities (so students can be referred to specialist for further testing);

o Specific strategies to improve learning skills such as listening comprehension, attention span, retention and retrieval of material, mathematical reasoning, reading comprehension and more;

o Numerous strategies to improve performance skills such as verbal expression, spelling, test taking and more;

o Classroom management strategies for the inclusive classroom;

o Overview of referral and evaluation procedures;

o Components of a successful individualized education programmes (IEPs);

o Discussion of program options, service delivery models, and strategies and programs for school sites (such as peer tutoring, service learning and collaborative staff development);

o Glossary of Special Education terms;

o Agencies, organizations and websites for further research.

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About the author (2005)

Gilbert Guerin, PhD, is on the staff of the San Jose State University Foundation where he directs teacher preparation and demonstration projects. Previously he held the position of professor of special education and department chair at San Jose State University. He has also held faculty positions in the schools of Education at the University of California at Berkeley, in Educationaly Psychology at California State University, Hayward and in Psychology at Dominican College, San Rafael, California. He was a school psychologist for more than 10 years and holds teaching credentials in elementary education, secondary education, and special education. He is the author of Informal Assessment in Education; Improving Instruction for Youth at Risk; and Critical Steps in Curriculum Reform and coauthored Bridges to Reading. He is the coauthor of recent articles titled "Confronting the Problem of Poor Literacy: Recognition and Action," "Plans, Predictions, and Frustrations in the Education of a Troubled Youth: Michael's Story-One of Many," and "Dropout Prevention: a Case for Enhanced Early Literacy Efforts." He is a mentor and trainer with the Monarch Project, University of Illinois at Chicago, and has provided similar services for the Alliance Project at Vanderbilt University. He has developed an online instructional resource site for high school teachers of students who are at-risk for school failure (found at He actively supports parent participation in the instructional decisions for children and youth and collaborates with Parent Helping Parents, a family resource center.

Mary Male, PhD, is a professor of special education at San Jose State University, where she has taught for twenty-two years. She coordinates a federally funded Alternative Education Teacher Preparation Program. Previously, she was a general education classroom teacher in Grades 4, 5, and 6, and a junior high school resource specialist in special education. She has also been a program administrator and staff development consultant for the California Department of Education. She has helped school districts nationwide plan for inclusive classrooms and is an expert in using technology to create access to the general education curriculum. She is the author of Technology for Inclusion: Meeting the Special Needs of All Students (2003). Recent book chapters include "Computers and Cooperative Learning in Diverse Classrooms" in Cooperative Learning and Strategies for Inclusion by Joanne Putnam (1998) and "Tools for Reconceptualizing the Inclusive Classroom" in New Ways of Lookiing at Learning Disabilities edited by Lou Denti and Patricia Tefft-Cousin (2001). She has presented at conferences nationwide on strategic planning for comprehensive systems of personnel development, cooperative learning, technology and inclusion, and alternative education. She is an Apple Distinguished Educator. She is the parent of a student with disabilities. She is active in her community by serving as a Court-Appointed Special Advocate (CASA) and is a mentor for students in the foster care system who have a dream of a higher education.

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