Last post, I discussed the first chapter of Neurodiversity in the Classroom by Thomas Armstrong. The first chapter was essentially an introduction to what the book would be focusing upon, and chapter two is where we jump right in.
Chapter two is titled “The Multiple Talents of Students with Learning Disabilities”. I will say that the title and length of this chapter initially threw me for a loop.
First of all, as someone who teaches students with learning disabilities, I am already aware they have a huge plethora of talents and abilities. I am also aware that there are a vast number of different learning disabilities and to write in one small chapter all of the various learning disabilities and all of the hundreds of thousands of talents these children possess seemed no easy feat.
However, I will say that this chapter was very good at broadly discussing learning disabilities, most notably dyslexia, as well as strategies to incorporate in the classroom to help these students to succeed.
Each chapter in the book discusses various things students with neurodiversities need in the classroom and life to help them succeed (such as strength awareness and assistive technology), but one thing in particular which I really like is the inclusion of positive role models and success stories. Kids love to hear, see, and read about famous people who are like them. Knowing that they are struggling and that these people who have the same neurodiversities as them also struggled, but made it through and greatly succeeded is exactly what students need.
Indeed, it has inspired a project I want to begin in my classroom in which students research and present a role model to the class. It would be great for them to learn more about their “disability” as well as learn about how someone facing the same challenges succeeded on a large scale.
If you’re interested in the book, here’s the link to it on Amazon. Happy reading!