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A model for summer programs for children with learning disabilities Dumaresq, Mary Marilyn 1972

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A MODEL FOR SUMMER PROGRAMS FOR CHILDREN WITH LEARNING DISABILITIES by MARY MARILYN DUMARESQ B.Sc.(N.), McGill University, 1968 A THESIS SUBMITTED IN PARTIAL FULFILMENT OF THE REQUIREMENTS FOR THE DEGREE OF MASTER OF ARTS in the Department of Special Education We accept this thesis as conforming to the required standard  THE UNIVERSITY OF BRITISH COLUMBIA June, 1972  In p r e s e n t i n g t h i s - t h e s i s  in p a r t i a l  f u l f i l m e n t o f the- requirements f o r  an advanced degree at the U n i v e r s i t y of the L i b r a r y s h a l l I  make i t  B r i t i s h Columbia,  freely available  f u r t h e r agree t h a t p e r m i s s i o n  for  I agree  r e f e r e n c e and  f o r e x t e n s i v e copying o f  this  that  study. thesis  f o r s c h o l a r l y purposes may be g r a n t e d by the Head o f my Department o r by h i s of  this  written  representatives. thesis  It  i s understood that  f o r f i n a n c i a l gain shall  permission.  Department The U n i v e r s i t y o f B r i t i s h Vancouver 8, Canada  Columbia  copying o r p u b l i c a t i o n  not be allowed without my  Abstract The large number of learning disabled children and dearth of appropriate professional resources i n most communities have resulted i n attempts, by concerned individuals and organizations, to develop community-centred summer programs for these children.  This study presents a model for summer  programs for learning disabled children that i s based on the results of a p i l o t project designed for such a population. The pilot project provided a two month program for 120 children between the ages of 5 and 11 years.  Each child was assigned to one of six  groups designed to develop basic s k i l l s i n the areas of audition, vision, lanaguage, attention, gross motor coordination or fine motor coordination. Group assignment was determined by the nature of each child's major disability.  The project was designed and supervised by a professional  consultant and two graduate students i n the f i e l d of learning disabilities. Fifteen teenagers were trained to work directly with the children. The model i s designed to accommodate 120 learning disabled children between the ages of 5 years 0 months and 8 years 6 months.  One aim of  the model summer program i s to develop deficit basic s k i l l s by providing the children wi^h success oriented, sequentially ordered experiences i n a l l areas of sports, gymnastics, music, drama, and arts and crafts.  A  second aim i s to include the children's parents as participant program observers i n order to increase their understanding of learning disabilities and to acquaint them with methods of assisting their children at home. This suggested program makes use of the same type of personnel as did the pilot project.  iii. The model is designed to meet community-felt needs using the resources available in reality.  advisor  iv.  TABLE OF CONTENTS CHAPTER • I. II.  PAGE  The Growth of Summer Programs for Learning Disabled Children  1  An Outline of a Model for Summer Programs for Learning Disabled Children  III.  3  A Description of the Pilot Project  .  8  Purpose  8  Program organization . . . .  8  Program design  9  Assessment and group placement  9  Hiring and training of teenage  IV.  staff members  10  Parent communication  10  Results of the Pilot Project  12  The definition of learning disabilities  12  Types of d i f f i c u l t i e s experienced by children  12  Improvement  14  Absenteeism  18  Assessment procedures and group placement Teenage staff members  20 . . . . . . . .  23  Travel  29  Parental Communication  30  V.  CHAPTER V.  PAGE Elaboration of the Model f o r Summer Programs f o r Learning Disabled Children  31  Population to be served  32  Program design  32  Selection and assessment of children  38  Program organization  42  S t a f f requirements and t r a i n i n g  4-2  Parental communication and p a r t i c i p a t i o n  45  Evaluation  50  References  51  Appendices  52  A.  Proposed P i l o t Project  53  B.  Selection of Children  58  C.  Program Design  62  D.  I n i t i a l Assessment and Treatment Group Assignment S e l e c t i o n and Training of Teenage S t a f f Members  E. F.  Parental Involvement  71 • • •  78 83  vi. LIST OF TABLES TABLE  PAGE  1.  Tjnprovement by treatment groups  17  2.  Absences of more than 5 days f o r children v/ith no recorded change i n performance  19  Frequencies of changes suggested by teenagers  28  3.  vii.  LIST OF FIGURES FIGURE  1. 2. 3.  PAGE  Program and l o c a t i o n schedule f o r the p i l o t project  8  Proposed weekly schedule f o r the Surrey summer program  54  B u l l e t i n c i r c u l a t e d throughout elementary schools advertising program  58  viii.  Acknowledgements For their assistance and advice in the preparation of this study, I would like to thank my committee members Dr. C. David and Dr. S. Blank; Dr. D. Kendall, Chairman of Special Education; and Professor R. F. Conry, Department of Educational Psychology. I am particularly indebted to my advisor, Dr. P.R. Koopman for her guidance and chairwomanship.  Marilyn Dumaresq University of British Columbia June, 1972  CHAPTER I The Growth of Summer Programs for Learning Disabled Children The authors of the CEIDIC Report (1970) state that 12% of the population up to 19 years of age requires treatment because of emotional and learning disorders. They further comment that the available resources are inadequate in meeting the needs of this large number of children. Parent groups and community organizations have not only recognized this fact but are now attempting to find ways to servicing this population.  Groups such as The Association for Children with Learning Disabilities, YM-YWCA, schools, and concerned parents are attempting to use the months of July and August to assist these children. In many coiiamLnities this is taking the form of summer programs for children with learning disabilities. The different programs developed vary in philosophy and content as well as in the amount of professional assistance sought by the organizers. There are gym programs designed to develop motor coordination, remedial reading and arithmetic classes to teach academic skills, camp programs to assist with the development of social skills, and programs designed to remedy all learning disabilities. Some of these are organized and executed by concerned individuals within the community, others make use of only highly trained professionals, while the majority use some combination of both. In addition to the needs of learning disabled children, many of these programs are attempting to help the parents cope with their children's problems. Time and resources are being allocated for educating parents about the nature of learning disabilities, and for acquainting them with  2.  materials and methods they can use at home to help their children. These facts indicate that there are needs felt by some people within various communities that are not being met by the resources presently available. Further, there appears to be some indication that summer programs designed for particular groups of children are viewed by these individuals as a means of meeting these needs. In view of these needs, this author undertook to assist with the development, implementation, and evaluation of a pilot project in order to gather data for the design of a summer program for learning disabled children. The purpose of the model is to accommodate the community-felt needs as realistically as possible in relation to existing resources. The following discussion presents a brief•outline of the model, describes the pilot project and its findings, and develops the model more fully in relation to the projec results.  CHAPTER II An Outline of A Model for Slimmer Programs for Learning Disabled Children For purposes of this model, a learning disability will be defined as some form of developmental discrepancy. Behaviourally, this results in a child who needs direct training through a sequential developmental program in order to acquire skills that most children learn incidentally or through standard teaching techniques. A beneficial program for these children will be defined as one which provides success-oriented experiences of a sequential nature, designed to develop certain broad catagories of abilities. If a child has not learned incidental skills that are usually acquired at a particular age, and if these skills are prerequisites to further learning, the logical outcome of an attempt to master new skills is failure. In order to prevent the development of a negative self concept associated with the accumulation of such failure experiences, it is important to provide a learning disabled child with an environment where he can achieve success while being taught basic skills that most children learn incidentally. As well as describing a beneficial program for learning disabled children, this model has been designed to provide opportunities for the parents of these children to become more acquainted with their children's behaviour and the ways in which they (the parents) can be of assistance to them (the children). Children eligible for the suggested program would be boys and girls  between the ages of 5 years 0 months and 8 years 6 months who have learning disabilities. The maximum number of children who could be accommodated is 120. The parents to be included in the program would be the parents of accepted applicants. The 120 children would be divided into four groups of 30 individuals, each group to attend the program for either four mornings or four afternoons a week during the month of July or August. The fifth day of each week would be reserved for parent conferences (one half day) and staff meetings (one half day). A central communication depot would be available to facilitate the arrangements of the former. Two different centres, each to service a particular geographic area, could be used; one during July and the other for the month of August. Assignment of children to program centres would reflect residential proximity and accommodate, whenever possible, planned family holidays. The program itself would consist of the regular recreation activities of sports, gymastics, music, drama, and arts and crafts. Every child would participate in each activity daily. As the goal of the program would be to provide success oriented experiences^designed to teach basic skills, the parent(s) of each applicant would be required to complete a behavioral check list prior to his child's acceptance into the program. The check list would be designed to determine a child's abilities on tasks that are to form part of the program. This would facilitate entering the child into the various activities at levels where he could succeed. Further information concerning each child's abilities and disabilities would be requested from teachers of the applicants. Each activity area would be adapted to provide a task level at which the child could succeed, and tasks would be sequentially ordered so as to  5. t r a i n b a s i c s k i l l d e f i c i t s b y p r o v i d i n g p r o g r e s s i v e l y more d i f f i c u l t  exer-  cises. S t a f f f o r t h e program would c o n s i s t o f one c o n s u l t a n t , two s u p e r v i s o r s , and 15 teenage s t a f f member employees. for  The c o n s u l t a n t would be r e s p o n s i b l e  t h e d e s i g n o f t h e program, s e l e c t i o n o f c h i l d r e n , s e l e c t i o n and t r a i n i n g  of s t a f f , parent  conferences  and r e p o r t w r i t i n g .  The s u p e r v i s o r s would  a s s i s t w i t h program d e s i g n , s e l e c t i o n o f c h i l d r e n and s t a f f , t h e t r a i n i n g o f t h e l a t t e r , and would be r e s p o n s i b l e f o r s u p e r v i s i o n o f t h e program. The  15 t e e n a g e r s would be w o r k i n g d i r e c t l y w i t h t h e c h i l d r e n .  would be a s s i g n e d t o two c h i l d r e n i n each o f t h e f o u r g r o u p s .  Every teenager These s t a f f  members would be r e s p o n s i b l e f o r c a r r y i n g o u t a l l a s p e c t s o f t h e program w i t h t h e s e c h i l d r e n and k e e p i n g  d a i l y anecdotal records f o r every c h i l d .  t e e n a g e r s would a l s o be r e s p o n s i b l e f o r a d m i n i s t e r i n g check l i s t  The  items  ( i d e n t i c a l t o t h o s e on t h e a p p l i c a t i o n f o r m s ) t o a l l c h i l d r e n a t t h e b e g i n n i n g and t h e end o f t h e program. The  t r a i n i n g o f t h e t e e n a g e r s would i n v o l v e a l e c t u r e on t h e n a t u r e o f  l e a r n i n g d i s a b i l i t i e s , a d e s c r i p t i o n o f t h e program, o b s e r v a t i o n and r e c o r d i n g techniques,  t h e c o n c e p t s o f t a s k a n a l y s i s and s u c c e s s - o r i e n t e d  b e h a v i o r a l check l i s t  a d m i n i s t r a t i o n , and b e h a v i o r management.  program w o u l d be d i v i d e d i n t o two s e s s i o n s : to  experiences, This  training  t h r e e c o n s e c u t i v e days p r i o r  commencement o f t h e program i t s e l f , and two days a f t e r t h e a d m i n i s t r a t i o n  o f check l i s t i t e m s and assignment o f c h i l d r e n t o s t a f f members.  Training  would be c o n t i n u e d t h r o u g h o u t t h e ongoing program b y t h e s u p e r v i s o r s and during s t a f f conferences  b y t h e s u p e r v i s o r s and c o n s u l t a n t .  A g e n e r a l m e e t i n g p r i o r t o t h e i n c e p t i o n o f t h e program would be to  e x p l a i n t h e g o a l s o f t h e program t o t h e p a r e n t s , i n f o r m them o f t h e  c h a n n e l s o f communication a v a i l a b l e and r e q u e s t v o l u n t e e r p a r t i c i p a n t  arranged  6.  observers. The volunteers would later be trained to observe and record the frequency of success-oriented and failure-oriented experiences. They would be responsible for taking such frequency counts for each of two children's performance for one half day per week for the duration of the program. j In this way it is anticipated that parents would become more aware of the j importance of successful experiences for their children, and of the types 1 of activities that can be used to help them. At the end of each month, the behavioral check list items would again be administered to each child completing the program. Reports would be compiled on each participant and sent to the parents. If the latter had given his/her permission to the program personnel, a copy of the report j 1  would also be sent to the child's school. After completion of the total program, a general meeting is suggested to present the overall results to the parents.  CHAPTER III A Description of the Pilot Project The following i s a brief description of the pilot project as i t was implemented i n the summer of 1971. For more detailed information on the various aspects presented, appendices have been included to provide the appropriate elaboration. PURPOSE The 1971 pilot project was designed (a) to provide a beneficial, two month summer, program for 5 to 11 year old children with learning d i s a b i l i t i e s , (b) to provide leadership training and experience for university students and teens, (c) to acquaint parents with materials and methods for helping their children at home, and (d) to develop the service as on-going i n the municipality. PROGRAM ORGANIZATION Four groups of 30 children each were to be accommodated, one i n each of four different school gymnasiums.  These centres were located i n different  areas so as to service as broad a geographic distribution as possible. Each group of children attended 16 sessions throughout the summer, one morning and one afternoon each week for two months.  The afternoon sessions  consisted of two hour periods of programmed activity, while the morning was spent swimming, as well as i n programmed activity. location schedule i s illustrated i n Figure 1.  The program and  8. M.  T.  Th.  F.  A.M. program swimming  G  11 C  G  33 C  G  22 C  G  44  P.M. program  G  22  G  44  G  11  G  33  C  C  C  C  C  G = Group C = Centre Fig. 1. Program and location schedule for the pilot project. Wednesdays were reserved for staff conferences concerning various aspects of the project and meetings between the consultant and parents who wished to discuss their children's progress. PROGRAM PERSONNEL One professional consultant and two M.A. students, all in the field of learning disabilities, were employed to design and implement the program. Fifteen teenagers were hired to work directly with the children. SELECTION of CHILDREN Applications on behalf of learning disabled children were solicited from the municipality by means of an advertisement in the local papers and written circulars sent to the elementary schools in the area. Parents • were directed to telephone the project office in order to supply the personnel with the necessary information about their child. Four categories of data were requested. 1. Relevant statistics, e.g. name, age, sex of child; name, address and phone of parents; school and grade of child. 2. Reasons for application to the program; child's strengths and weaknesses.  3.  A yes-no check l i s t of such behaviours as: i s clumsy and awkward, shy, etc.  your c h i l d  4.  Performance i n academic areas such as reading, s p e l l i n g , arithmetic, etc.  Children were s e l e c t e d on the b a s i s of performance discrepancies and developmental d e f i c i t s i n the areas o f a u d i t i o n , v i s i o n , gross and f i n e motor coordination, language, and a t t e n t i o n .  Of the 140 c h i l d r e n who a p p l i e d ,  118 were admitted t o the program on t h i s b a s i s .  The remainder were r e j e c t e d  f o r one or more of the f o l l o w i n g reasons: 1. The f a m i l y had planned a summer vacation f o r four o r more of the program weeks. 2.  The c h i l d was p r i m a r i l y emotionally  disturbed.  3.  The c h i l d was p h y s i c a l l y handicapped r a t h e r than learning disabled.  The presence of a p h y s i c a l handicap d i d not automatically bar a c h i l d from the program. was t h i s so.  Only i n cases where t h i s was the sole d i f f i c u l t y  For example, c h i l d r e n w i t h a r t i c u l a t i o n problems were not  accepted unless they had accompanying l e a r n i n g d i s a b i l i t i e s such as general f i n e motor d i f f i c u l t i e s .  Three c h i l d r e n who were confined t o wheelchairs  were admitted as they were reported  as experiencing  various v i s u a l and audi-  t o r y a d d i t i o n t o t h e i r p h y s i c a l handicaps. PROGRAM DESIGN S i x program areas were designed, one t o t r a i n s k i l l s i n each of the j  areas of a u d i t i o n , v i s i o n , f i n e motor coordination, gross motor coordination; language, and a t t e n t i o n .  A l l c h i l d r e n were t o be assigned,.ta_the-area i n  which they were experiencing  the most d i f f i c u l t y .  ASSESSMENT and GROUP PLACEMENT Program area assignment was based on parent information  from the  a p p l i c a t i o n forms and the c h i l d r e n ' s performance on a b a t t e r y of informal  10. tasks designed to assess behaviour i n each of the six areas.  The assessment  battery consisted of two or three tasks i n each area; a total of 16 such items were used.  If a child failed tasks i n more than one area, his place-  ment was based on the frequency of these failures i n the various task areas. The assessment battery was administered to the children twice; once on their entry into the program and again on the last two days of the program.  The administration was carried out by the teenage staff members.  Each teenager tested a l l the children on one or two particular tasks. HIRING and TRAINING of TEENAGE STAFF MEMBERS The teenagers were hired on the basis of information supplied on a written application form and a 15 minute interview with the two supervisors. Selection was based on their anticipated ability to be responsible, independent, directive with the children, and receptive of direction from the consultant and supervisors.  They attended a three day training session  where they were taught the nature of learning d i s a b i l i t i e s , the types of activities useful i n training deficit s k i l l s , techniques of behaviour management and observation and recording of behaviour, and task battery administration.  They were then assigned to a particular activity group for the duration  of the program.  V/ithin their respective groups, each was then assigned to  two children from each of the four geographic centres. The teenagers were to be responsible for carrying out program activities with their particular children under the direction of the supervisors, and keeping daily anecdotal records on each child with whom they worked. PARENT COMMUNICATION These daily reports, together with the behavioural data gleaned from the administration of the task battery, were compiled into reports on the various children and were available to parents upon request.  At a meeting of the Association for Children with Learning- Disahilit in February, the results of the project were presented.  CHAPTER IV Results of the P i l o t Project THE DEFINITION of LEARNING DISABILITIES The  concept of learning d i s a b i l i t i e s has been approached i n a multitude  of ways.  The areas of Perceptual Motor Development (Kephart, 1971;  Barsch,  1967;  Getman, 1965), V i s u a l Perception  ( F r o s t i g , 1964), Language (Bateman,  1965;  Johnson & Myklebust, 1967), and Psycholinguisties ( K i r k & McCarthy,  1961)  are among those that have been emphasized.  The professionals  i n the Second Task Force on Learning D i s a b i l i t i e s could not agree on  involved any  one d e f i n i t i o n ; they only agreed i n t h e i r disagreement (Bateman, 1968). This confusion was p i l o t project.  p a r t i a l l y r e f l e c t e d i n the o r i g i n a l plans f o r the  Although the proposal  s p e c i f i e d that learning disabled  c h i l d r e n were those with d i f f i c u l t i e s i n motor coordination, v i s u a l percept i o n , and auditory discrimination, arrangements had been made to provide a motor t r a i n i n g pj^gram_f.or_all_children. Discussion with the program organizer and program designers resulted i n the use of the term "learning problems" rather than "learning d i s a b i l i t i e s " i n advertising f o r p a r t i c i p a n t s .  The former was  f e l t to be more f l e x i b l e , '  hence permitting the program to be designed according community.  to the needs of the  The term "learning d i s a b i l i t i e s " on the other hand, would have  c a r r i e d with i t the implication that a predesigned program was  soliciting  a p a r t i c u l a r type of c h i l d with a s p e c i f i c set of c h a r a c t e r i s t i c s . TYPES of DIFFICULTIES EXPERIENCED by CHILDREN - The a p p l i c a t i o n forms submitted and the pre-program task data indicated that children r a r e l y had d i f f i c u l t y i n only one area, but were  experiencing  13. a m u l t i p l i c i t y of problems.  Of the population who  applied to the program,  major areas of d i f f i c u l t y and the frequency with which they were mentioned were: Academic: Reading Arithmetic Spelling Writing or p r i n t i n g  44 17 7 6,  Non-Academic: Coordination (general) Short attention span (includes h y p e r a c t i v i t y ) Speech Immaturity "Slow" Eye-hand coordination — Perception problems. F. M. coordination -Doesn't l i s t e n Language G. M. coordination V i s u a l (non s p e c i f i c ) V i s u a l Perception Comprehension Social  26 21 19. 10 10 8 6 5 4 4 4 3 3 3 _3  Other problems mentioned once or twice were memory, space, reversing l e f t and r i g h t , neurological problems, lack of i n t e r e s t , ambidextrousness, retention, learning problems, school work, hearing, "could do b e t t e r i f he t r i e d " , sequencing, auditory, eye-foot coordination and t a c t i l e perception. I f one considers the l i s t of non-academic d i f f i c u l t i e s , i t i s apparent that the s k i l l s mentioned are those acquired by most children i n the course of casual experience.  These s k i l l d e f i c i t s have been found to be r e l a t e d  to academic learning problems.  (McCarthy & McCarthy, 1969;  Myers & Hammill,  1969). The f i v e to eleven year age range was  s p e c i f i e d as t h i s was  the connnunity, to be the population most i n need of assistance.  f e l t , by The number  U. of  learning disabled children who p a r t i c i p a t e d (39 eight years, seven  months and over; 67 betv/een the ages of f i v e years and eight years s i x months) indicated that there were such children within t h i s age range i n the community.  However, the findings of the p i l o t project tend  that these two groups may havV d i f f e r e n t needs and hence would probably  /  benefit from d i f f e r e n t types of programs. The major area of d i f f i c u l t y f o r the older children was more frequently academic i n nature.  Of t h i s population 84.6$ (33 of the 39 p a r t i c i p a n t s )  was reported, by parents, as having d i f f i c u l t i e s i n the areas of reading, arithmetic, spellmg,,__and/or-~wr^i-t-i-ng-(-pri-nt-i-ng-).  Of these 33, c h i l d r e n ,  23 (or 58.9$ of the older population) were described as having major d i f f i c u l t i e s i n the  academic_^  On the other hand, only 26 of the 67 children (38.8$) i n the younger group were experiencing some s p e c i f i c school problems; 16 of these (23.9$) not reporting problems of any other nature. This fact i s not s u r p r i s i n g as the primary source of available informat i o n f o r the older c h i l d i s generally of an academic nature, while some of the younger children would not yet be attending school. D.ffROvEMENT Two types of improvement were operationally defined according to the behavioural observations recorded d a i l y on each c h i l d by the s t a f f members, objective improvement (0.I.) and subjective improvement ( S . I . ) .  The  included only objective data that i l l u s t r a t e d an increase i n s k i l l  former  develop-  ment . Three separate d a i l y observations of S a l l y ' s behaviour, taken c o l l e c t i v e l y , demonstrate 0.1.  S a l l y , a nine year old g i r l , was  assigned to the  f i n e motor group i n order to develop her a b i l i t y to coordinate fine muscular  15. movements. One of the activities pertinent to this group was a fishing game that used a magnetized pole to attract a variety of multicoloured fish. Following are the behavioural observations, recorded by the staff member with whom Sally worked, that exemplify objective improvement. Day 1: Fishing game: Couldn't grasp the idea that there was a magnet on the end. Used left hand. Only picked up some fish with help. Didn't get the line into the pond. Day 3: Fishing game: Used left hand. Picked them all up in about 20 minutes and put them back into the tray. Day 5: She caught all nine fish from the pond three times without any problems. Used left hand. Caught the colours of the fish I asked her to. In this example the objective improvement is from "only picked up some fish with help" on Day 1, to "picked them all up" on Day 3Another example of objective improvement is Kit who was assigned to the gross motor group in order to increase his general coordination and balance. Following is a report of his attempts at using the trampoline. Day 1: Whenever he falls, he always' has his hands there on the mat to balance him, so all of his drops or stunts are incorrect. Day 2: Yesterday on the trampoline, if he fell to his knees, he couldn't get back up. Today he could bounce down to his knees, then over on his seat, and then up to a standing position again. Sue's problem was her short attention span. She was reported initially as only being able to attend to a task for a maximum time of one minute. By the end of the program she was attending to colouring tasks for five  16. minutes,  l i s t e n i n g t o s t o r i e s f o r f i v e minutes/  t o y s f o r t e n minutes.  and p l a y i n g w i t h b a l a n c i n g  These t h r e e examples are r e p r e s e n t a t i v e o f  S u b j e c t i v e improvement i n c l u d e s s u b j e c t i v e o r judgmental by s t a f f members. and  data reported  Statements such as "amazing p r o g r e s s " , "he i s i m p r o v i n g " ,  "he i s g e t t i n g b e t t e r a t i t " S.I. alone was  0.1.  not used  are examples o f S.I.  as an i n d i c a t i o n o f improvement as i t was  t h e r e s u l t o f a s t a f f member's judgment based  on u n r e c o r d e d  data.  However,  s u b j e c t i v e judgments i n combination w i t h o b j e c t i v e d a t a were c o n s i d e r e d as an i n d i c a t i o n o f p o s i t i v e changes i n b e h a v i o u r t i o n was  as the o b j e c t i v e i n f o r m a -  recorded.  T a b l e 1 i l l u s t r a t e s the number o f c h i l d r e n a s s i g n e d t o each o f the s i x treatment  groups and the numbers p e r group whose r e c o r d s i n d i c a t e  r e c o r d e d change i n b e h a v i o u r ,  no  s u b j e c t i v e improvement and o b j e c t i v e improve-  17. TABLE 1 Improvement by Treatment Groups  Treatment groups  Total in group  k j ^  L t*^V^  AT*5>^  14 17 22 22 11 20  Totals  No recorded change  S.I.  8 8 9 5 5 6  2 I 3 2 0 2 10  41  A = auditory L = language AT = attention  0.1.  4 8 10 15 612 v  55  G = gross motor F = f i n e motor V = visual  Of the 55 students f o r whom improvement was reported, only 12 children were 8 years, 7 months or older (21.8$ of those who improved),  while 22 of  the 41 students f o r whom no change, was noted (53.7$) were 8 years, 7 months or older.  The teenagers' reports gave some indications o f possible explana-  tions f o r no changes i n behaviour.  S i x of the older children i n the program  had demonstrated s k i l l i n a l l areas where they had been placed.  As no  noticeable problems were exhibited, the s t a f f members administered informal paper and p e n c i l tasks designed to determine whether or not the children could discriminate between s i m i l a r l e t t e r s ( i . e . p and q, n and u, e t c . ) and sequences ( i . e . help and hlep, e t c . ) .  A l l s i x children were unable to  complete the assigned tasks. As t h i s occurred near the end of the program, i t was not possible t o follow up the findings, nor was there time to administer s i m i l a r tasks to  18. other children. However, it seems at least possible that in some of the older children learning disabilities are more closely linked to academic areas, or that the activities used to develop deficit skills v/ere of a level too basic for the older children. From a management point of view, the wide age range presented some difficulty. The staff-child ratio in the pilot project being 1:2, it was not uncommon to find a teenager attempting to carry out a series of activities with two children, one aged 5 or 6, and the other 10 or 11 years old. In such instances, the interest level could hardly be appropriate for both children. One of the staff members expressed it this way: "He is a big show-off and I think there is too much of an age difference for him to be in our group. He's almost twelve and the others are seven." Absenteeism. The results of the pilot project indicated that the group of children whose performance was not reported to have improved were absent more frequently than those children who were recorded as having improved. Table 2 represents the number of children for whom there was no reported change in each treatment group and the number of those subjects who were absent for five (out of 12) or more program days.  19. TABLE 2 Absences of More Than 5 days f o r Children with No Recorded Change i n Performance  Group  A L AT G F V Total  No. of children no change  Number of children absent 5 or more days  8 8 9 5 5  8 8  6 5 3 4  6 41  34  Thirty-four o f the 41 children (83.0$) f o r whom there was no noticeable change were absent f o r f i v e or more program days.  On the other hand,  only 27 of the 65 children f o r whom improvement was recorded (41.5$) were absent f o r a s i m i l a r time period. Upon a p p l i c a t i o n t o the program, parents were asked t o specify proposed holiday dates i f planned f o r July or August.  F i f t y parents stated that  they had one to three weeks scheduled vacations, 24 said that they did not have any holiday plans, and 30 l e f t the question unanswered.  In the  l a t t e r case i t was not possible to determine i f no holidays were planned, or i f the dates were not yet s p e c i f i e d .  Although the exact number  of children who were absent due t o family holidays cannot be tabulated, i t would appear that t h i s factor contributed to absenteeism. In the 5 year to 8 year, 6 months group, a t o t a l of 28 children were absent less than f i v e times.  Of t h i s population, 27 children were  reported as having improved during the summer.  However, i n the older  20. population, of the 12 who were absent less than five times only six were reported as having improved. Although these results are not conclusive, they do suggest that the program activities are possibly more appropriate for the younger age group; that a more limited age range might be easier from a management point of view; and that there should be some attempt made to control absenteeism. ASSESSMENT PROCEDURES and GROUP PLACEMENT The intent of the task battery developed for the pilot project was: (a)  to be used i n conjunction with parent information to determine the  child's major area of difficulty, and (b) information available on each child.  to add to the amount of behavioural  The following case study i s an i l l u s -  tration of how, i n some instances, these intents were f u l f i l l e d . Name: Ann  Birthdate: Nov. 19, 1965  I n i t i t a l Assessment: Ann was referred to the summer program by her parents because she was f e l t to have major d i f f i c u l t i e s of an unspecified nature. Her mother said that Ann was clumsy and awkward and had d i f f i c u l t i e s with tasks that involved manual dexterity. She exhibited such inattentive behaviours as: difficulty i n following directions and concentrating; an inability to s i t s t i l l ; and forgetfulness. She was reported as seeking attention by "showing off" and being unable to express herself well. Ann arrived at the i n i t i a l testing session a cheerful, slightly overweight g i r l , wearing thick corrective lenses. Her clumsiness was illustrated by her inability to walk along an 8' board, 2" x 4" i n dimension. To maintain her balance she found i t necessary to hold onto a staff member throughout the execution of the task. She was unable to successfully complete tasks involving fine motor coordination and manual dexterity such as threading needles and tying a bow. During the testing session Ann was reported as attentive by the staff members, but was observed constantly moving her hands i f they were uninvolved with a specific activity. Ann also had d i f f i c u l t i e s with morse code, a task involving auditory visual translation (i.e. matching a visual representation with an  auditory stimulus). She was unable to blend sequentially presented sounds to form words (e.g. c - up = cup) or to supply missing'sounds to form words (e.g. -encil, -rayon = pencil, crayon). She attended well to the tasks to which she was assigned. As a result of this information, it was felt that although Ann was experiencing difficulties in fine motor coordination and auditory processing, her most basic difficulty was in balance and gross motor coordination skills. She was, therefore, assigned to the Gross Motor group for treatment in this primary area. Initital observations in this group supported both parental observations and pre-test data. Ann had difficulty with every task involving gross motor coordination. She was unable to bounce from a kneeling position to a standing position on the trampoline, spring over the vaulting box, play leapfrog, or climb logs organized in step formation. Tasks involving eye-motor coordination were even less successful. She was unable to grasp the rudiments of badminton; she could not translate a visual stimulus into a motor output (playing diagrammed notes on a zither), and she refused to play catch with a ball. It was noted that here attention span was very short and she appeared to avoid these failure loaded situations by refusing to participate and/or running away. Her social interactions were often inappropriate, e.g. saying "shut up", spitting, hitting and refusing to participate in activities with her peers. She was found to have a moderate fear of water and would not submerge her head. Treatment: Ann was given training in activities designed to improve gross motor abilities and eye motor coordination. She was instructed and assisted on the trampoline, on the vaulting box and in the water. She practiced leapfrog, climbing over logs and games of catch, using bean bags instead of balls. As her avoidance behaviours were felt to be caused by fear of failure, all training was initiated at a level where she could experience success (e.g. the first trampoline activity involved bouncing very gently while holding hands with a staff member for support). She was allowed to progress slowly to improve her confidence at basic levels first. Final Assessment: Ann showed considerable improvement in all activities requiring balance and gross motor coordination. On the trampoline she was able to bounce from a standing position to a kneeling then a seated position, finally returning to an upright  22. p o s i t i o n without a s s i s t a n c e . On the springboard and v a u l t i n g box she was able to bounce w i t h both f e e t simultaneously r a t h e r than s e q u e n t i a l l y . An improvement was noted i n her a b i l i t y t o climb steps and p l a y l e a p f r o g . In both instances she f e l l l e s s frequently. Her avoidance behaviours were l e s s pronounced; she p a r t i c i p a t e d i n a game of "catch" even though she experienced d i f f i c u l t i e s w i t h task. Ann's s o c i a l i n t e r a c t i o n s became more appropriate. She apologized f o r rudeness and approached her peers w i t h o f f e r s of assistance r a t h e r than p h y s i c a l or v e r b a l aggression. She e x h i b i t e d l e s s f e a r of water and was able to t o t a l l y submerge her head. Although only minor improvements were observed during the f i n a l t e s t i n g session (she was now able t o t i e a bow, thread needles and blend sounds), her p e r s i s tent f a i l u r e t o master the walking board and morse code could not be considered true estimates of her a b i l i t y as she l e f t her glasses at home the day of the p o s t - t e s t i n g . Conclusions: Considerable o v e r a l l improvement was observed i n Ann's a b i l i t y to handle a c t i v i t i e s i n v o l v i n g gross motor s k i l l s . She appeared more confident i n h e r s e l f , as i l l u s t r a t e d by her w i l l i n g n e s s t o p a r t i c i p a t e i n a c t i v i t i e s designed t o focus on her areas of weakness. She a l s o improved i n her a b i l i t y t o handle tasks i n v o l v i n g eye-motor coordination. I t i s f e l t that Ann w i l l s t i l l need some assistance i n these areas, as w e l l as those more complex i n nature, such as f i n e motor c o o r d i n a t i o n and v i s u a l processing. However, the combined usefulness of these two sources of information was not evident i n a l l cases.  A f t e r group assignments had been made on  the b a s i s of parent information and task b a t t e r y performance, 39 adjustments were made.  The nature of these changes was determined by the  made and reported by the teenagers and/or the supervisors.  observations  C r i t e r i a that  i n i t i a t e d a change i n placement were: 1.  demonstrable mastery i n a l l tasks of a p a r t i c u l a r a c t i v i t y group.  2.  observable problems i n an area represented by another treatment group.  Of the 39 c h i l d r e n whose placement was' changed at some p o i n t i n the program, 27 were reported by t h e i r assigned s t a f f members as having no  23. n o t i c e a b l e d i f f i c u l t y w i t h program t a s k s i n any o f the s i x t r e a t m e n t I n t h e s e i n s t a n c e s , assessment i n f o r m a t i o n and p a r e n t r e a d i l y comparable i n terms o f m e a n i n g f u l d a t a . m a j o r p r o b l e m , as s p e c i f i e d by h e r p a r e n t s , was  groups.  d a t a were n o t  as  An example i s S y l v i e whose reading.  Her  performance  on t h e assessment b a t t e r y r e s u l t e d i n f a i l u r e i n one t a s k i n each o f t h e a r e a s o f v i s u a l p e r c e p t i o n , g r o s s motor c o o r d i n a t i o n , f i n e motor c o o r d i n a t i o n and a u d i t o r y p e r c e p t i o n . t a s k s and t e n t a t i v e s u g g e s t i o n s f a c t t h e r e was The  one,  remaining  as t o t h e n a t u r e  cannot be p u t 12  by a n o t h e r t r e a t m e n t  She had no d i f f i c u l t y w i t h program of her d i s a b i l i t y , i f i n  forth.  c h i l d r e n had d i f f i c u l t i e s i n an a r e a group.  represented  The r e p o r t s f r o m t h e s e c h i l d r e n ' s p a r e n t s  t e n d e d t o be g e n e r a l i n n a t u r e and t h e r e f o r e d i d n o t c o n t r i b u t e s u f f i c i e n t s p e c i f i c i n f o r m a t i o n t o a i d i n group p l a c e m e n t . who  was  One  example i s a  child  o r i g i n a l l y p l a c e d i n t h e v i s u a l group on t h e b a s i s o f t a s k p e r f o r -  mance and n o n - s p e c i f i c p a r e n t i n f o r m a t i o n . t h e a r e a o f f i n e motor s k i l l s ,  When d i f f i c u l t y was  noted i n  such as c u t t i n g w i t h s c i s s o r s and u s i n g a  p e n c i l , s e v e r a l g r o s s motor a c t i v i t i e s were t r i e d .  I t was  she d i d n o t have t h e most b a s i c a b i l i t i e s i n t h i s a r e a .  observed t h a t  The  child  was  t h e n moved f r o m t h e v i s u a l group t o t h e g r o s s motor group. The  f a c t t h a t t h e r e were 39  c h i l d r e n whose i n i t i a l p l a c e m e n t needed  adjustment s u g g e s t s t h a t assessment p r o c e d u r e s c o u l d be  improved.  TEENAGE STAFF IJBvEERS  Although i t was  t h e e x p e c t a t i o n s o f the s t a f f members were i n d e e d  f o u n d t h a t h i g h s c h o o l s t u d e n t s were a b l e t o meet them.  demanding, They were  a b l e t o g r a s p the t h e o r e t i c a l c o n c e p t s p r e s e n t e d  and t r a n s l a t e t h e s e  a p p r o p r i a t e t e a c h i n g and management t e c h n i q u e s .  They were g e n e r a l l y  f o u n d t o be h i g h l y r e s p o n s i b l e and f l e x i b l e , d e m o n s t r a t i n g  abilities  into  to  24. work independently and successfully with the children. At the end of the summer the supervisors evaluated the teenagers individually and as a group.  Each individual was rated on his (a)  ability  to work independently, (b) willingness to take direction, (c) sense of responsibility, and (d)  attitude.  recordings of staff performance.  The ratings were based on annecdotal Observations and comments were available  for every staff member on each criterion. Of the 15 staff members, only two were considered below average on any of the aforementioned criteria, and only one was found to be unacceptable i n most things he did. Of the remaining 13 staff members, 7 were considered to be above average on every criteria, while 6 were average or above. As a group, most of the staff members did not know each other prior to the inception of the program.  During the two months that they worked  together, they developed into a cooperative, functioning unit, controlling each other when appropriate.  One example of the use of peer pressure  occurred when the location for the Wednesday staff conferences was announced. One teenager complained, "Oh, do we have to go a l l the way down there? Can't we have i t at my house?" to which another staff member immediately replied "Everybody has to make the same t r i p , S control was also noted during treatment sessions.  ." This internal The teenagers themselves  verbally reprimanded their peers i f they wasted time, l e f t equipment lying around, or played when they should have been working. Seven of the 15 teenagers were absent for some period of time due to illness.  Those staff members who had. perfect attendance never questioned  the appropriateness of f u l l pay for their colleagues; i n fact, two expressed concern that one or other of the staff members might have their pay reduced.  25.  These two teenagers, who had not been absent, felt this would be inappropriate. One staff member was an unattractive g i r l who did not possess any social s k i l l s .  Although the group never f u l l y accepted her, they did not  exclude her either.  On two occasions near the end of the summer, the group  was observed giving her instruction and encouragement on the trampoline. A further incident that demonstrated the teenagers' willingness to accept each others strengths and weaknesses took place i n the swimming pool. One of the boys was a non-swimmer and, i n i t i a l l y , very self-conscious about his lack of s k i l l .  By A.ugust, several of the other staff members  were trying to teach him how to swim and a good time seemed to have been had by a l l . This group of adolescents was generally conspicuous for i t s lack of small "cliques".  They seemed to accept each other as they were and, while  there vrere two staff members who never became an integral part of the group, these individuals were certainly not excluded i n any way. During the f i n a l week of the program, each staff member was asked to submit a written evaluation of the program and his experiences. evaluation was to include the following topics: Learning Experience - what you have learned? - what you would like to have learned but didn't? Training Course - what aspects were most useful? - what was not useful? - recommendations Program - what have you learned about your area? - on some future occasion would you choose the area i n which you worked or another one? -* can you think of new activities pertinent to your area? Give examples.  This  26.  Recommendations (with respect to) - training and supervision - testing, program, equipment - organization - finance In future, would you choose this type of a job in preference to another sort? Why? Why Not? The evaluations submitted demonstrated considerable insight and sophistication on the part of these youngsters. Following are some direct quotes concerning what some of these teenagers felt they had learned from their experience. "In this job I have learned that not all children do things to be bad. That if a child is always mischievious and uncontrolled there may be something wrong and he could have a learning problem. I have also learned how to work with kids at more of their level instead of looking down on them as a grown-up would." "After taking the program this summer, I have learned' that a problem of this kind does exist, and that the children involved can be helped. I have also learned that different children have different problems and that they can have more than one. I can't think of anything else I would have liked to learn." "Before the summer, I was pretty green, not only concerning barriers to a child's mental and physical development, but also concerning children themselves (i.e. their behaviour, the way they think, what they think.). I know now that kids are basically good, that they are basically trustful, hopeful and charitable, but that there are barriers which make them seem mean, impatient, and apathetic. I have also learned that underlying all the other emotions is the basic need to be wanted and loved, and if you can convey to the child that he (she) is wanted and loved, communication and discipline will not represent a problem." "I think the most important thing we've been shown is how to communicate with the kids." "I learned a lot from this program such as learning how to handle children better than I could before. I also learned patience which I must say I was somewhat lacking before and I also learned that children with learning disabilities are not stupid, as a matter of fact I found them very intelligent and normal."  27. "I learned that children with problems are able to learn." "This job has taught me to be more able to control children without being really strict or stern. I learned to ask children to do things by suggesting rather than force." "I always thought that either you were intelligent, not intelligent, or retarded. How wrong an ideal" "The two most important things I've learned are patience and responsibility." Comments on the training program were varied. Most of the teenagers included at least one statement concerning both the positive aspects and recommendations.  Examples of the former are:  "... i t was fine, i t told us a great deal of what we should have known." "I think every b i t of information I was given was useful." "I thought everything we learned was useful." "The description of children with learning problems was useful and also the method of recording properly." "I think the training would explain well what we would face - It was also a great ego trip telling people you've been to U.B.C." "The training program should be the same." "We were taught enough to be able to cope with situations that arose." "The most valuable part of the session." Of the 15 staff members, 14 specified that the training session was useful.  The one teenager who did not so state felt that too much time  was spent describing individual children to their assigned staff members. He pointed out that since some assignments changed after i n i t i a l testing, he considered the time wasted. Eight of the 15 teenagers stated that the training sessions were very appropriate.  They did not recommend any changes or improvements.  Of  28. the seven who did make suggestions, five f e l t there should have been a heavier emphasis on specific methods and activities to be used with the children.  Four expressed the desire for a longer training period; two  wanted more information concerning specific children; and one f e l t more films would have been appropriate. A l l the teenagers f e l t they had learned a great deal about  the  specific area to which they were assigned, (e.g. Visual, Auditory, etc.) both i n relation to the types of problems the children experienced and the activities that helped them (the children) to develop s k i l l s . A l l the staff members stated that on a subsequent occasion, they would elect to work in the areas where they had acquired experience. The recommendations for change made by the staff members and the frequency with which they were made are l i s t e d in Table 3.  TABLE 3 Frequencies of Changes Suggested by Teenagers  Change  Frequency  Transportation Some solution necessary  10  Salary An increase i n wages Wages adequate  10 2  Absenteeism of children Some solution necessary Parents charged to decrease absenteeism  1  Suggestions concerning more pool time, more (or less) supervision, and substitute staff members to replace those absent due to illness were put forward. Each was mentioned only once. Four of the teenagers stated that they would want the same job again; three said they would if the pay was better; and one felt she was unable to say at the time. Of the 15 teenagers hired to work with the children, only one was considered unacceptable. As a result of these findings, the use of teenage staff members is highly recommended for such programs. Selections procedures as outlined in Appendix E were found to be successful. TRAVEL Travel presented a serious problem throughout the pilot project. The distance that had to be travelled at lunch time each day v/as either ten miles (between and 0,^ on Mondays and Thursdays), or three miles (between and on Tuesdays and Fridays). The municipality did not supply transportation in these areas. The staff members were then faced with several possible alternatives, none of which was totally satisfactory. On some occasions, certain of the staff members rode ten-speed bicycles which they had felt obliged to buy for this purpose, while at C-^ and C^, many ate their lunch during the three mile walk. However, there was. usually a car or two to provide a form of shuttle service. With one exception, the teenagers who drove themselves or whose parents acted as chauffeurs willingly provided transportation for those who needed it. The one girl who did not fit into this pattern decided to charge everyone for "gasoline". A further problem resulted from this geographic arrangement.  30.  Considerable time had to be spent packing up and moving equipment from . centre to centre. PARENTAL COMMUNICATION Informal interactions with parents throughout the program and comments from some individuals present at the presentation of the results indicate that: 1. Some parents were unaware of the nature of the program. 2. Parents wanted written reports about: (a) diagnosis of their children's d i f f i c u l t i e s (b) performance during the program (c) recommendations that could be carried out at home and/or i n the school. 3. Some parents had expectations that differed from those of the program developers. 4.  Some parents expressed, after completion of the program, that they would have been w i l l i n g to volunteer their time to assist with certain aspects of the program.  The nature of these findings suggests that communication with the parents needs to be improved and further, that they are eager for guidance i n the management and training of their learning disabled children.  CHAPTER V Elaboration of the Model for Summer Programs for Learning Disabled Children The concept of learning disabilities that underlies the model i s one of developmental discrepancies.  Children with such discrepancies  are often unable to function at a level commensurate with their.peers, as they do not have the basic s k i l l s that form the foundation of more advanced learning.  Their lack of basic abilities often leads to accumulated  failure experiences, and sometimes to exclusion from regular recreational activities with their peers.  This latter occurrance i s often due to  the fact that learning disabled children do not have the prerequisite a b i l i t i e s for the popular sports and various games of their age group. The model for summer programs for these children, then, i s designed to provide them with success-oriented learning experiences by using recreational activities.  The goal of the program i s to train these basic s k i l l s  by adapting the level of difficulty of the various tasks and programming small sequential steps. By involving the parents i n the program as participant observers, i t i s anticipated that they w i l l become more aware of the diverse behaviour of learning disabled children and the types of activities that are useful i n promoting learning with their own child. The following discussion i s an elaboration of the model presented in Chapter II. Pilot Project.  The recommendations are based on the finding of the 1971  32. POPULATION to be SERVED Children e l i g i b l e f o r the program would be boys and g i r l s between the  ages of 5 years 0 months and 8 years 6 months who have learning  disabilities. i s 120.  The maximum number of children who could be accommodated  The parents to be included i n the program would be the parents  of the children accepted. PROGRAM DESIGN The nature of the program would be s i m i l a r to that of a regular summer recreation program.  Core a c t i v i t i e s would consist of gymnastics,  sports, arts and c r a f t s , music, and drama.  Two main differences e x i s t  between the philosophies of t h i s program and r e c r e a t i o n a l one.  (a) The  emphasis i n the former would be on helping children to develop s k i l l s i n d e f i c i t areas rather than achieving mastery on tasks when entering behaviour i s e i t h e r average or above, and (b)  the former program would be  adapted to s u i t the needs of the children. Children would p a r t i c i p a t e i n a l l aspects of the program d a i l y , but  each series of tasks would be adapted to provide f o r successful  experiences while developing s k i l l d e f i c i t s .  For example, a c h i l d who  might be uncoordianted and clumsy would take part i n drama as w e l l as sports and gymnastics. His i n i t i a l a c t i v i t i e s i n the former group might involve the moving of heavy pieces of scenery to clear the stage.  This  task would be t r a i n i n g gross motor development but the l e v e l of d i f f i c u l t y would be such that the c h i l d could s t i l l experience success.  As h i s s k i l l  at t h i s develops, the task could be made more d i f f i c u l t , f o r example: the  movement of p a r t i c u l a r pieces of equipment to and from predesignated  areas.  This might necessitate some degree of planning on the part of the  c h i l d so that he avoids bumping into objects or people.  33. Another example could be a child whose major difficulty might be in remembering a series of verbally presented directions.  If, on entering  the program, the child i s only able to remember and follow one direction, then i n each activity group his directions i n i t i a l l y would always be presented singly.  As the child's s k i l l develops, the number of sequentially  presented instructions would be increased. Again, the tasks would be adapted so as to provide the child with successful experiences while developing specific s k i l l s . Several advantages result from this type of system where a l l children participate i n each activity:  (a) i t provides a wide range of experiences  for children with a multiplicity of problems, thus providing opportunities for developing s k i l l s i n more than one deficit area; (b) by encouraging participation i n a l l activities of the program, the children are exposed to a variety of experiences from which they are often barred as a result of their problems; (c) dissatisfaction among the children i s less likely to occur as various pieces of equipment w i l l not be restricted to particular children; (d) rather than extensive individualized testing by professional personnel to locate specific deficit areas, one needs to determine the child's competence i n the activities that w i l l be a part of the program. General recreational activities are useful vehicles for developing deficit s k i l l s .  The use of mime, play acting, charades, puppet shows and  role playing are excellent activities that were used i n the pilot project to develop listening s k i l l s , language, the ability to follow directions, to remember sequences of events and to encourage social s k i l l s of cooperation and interaction.  The medium of drama also lends i t s e l f to adaptation  according to the levels of s k i l l development of the children.  Following  are a few specific examples of the variety of activities that could be used in this general group: Activity  Skills being developed  1. Read the children a story - length variable according to children's ability to remember a series of events presented verbally - interest level appropriate to the children.  - ability to attend - listening - ability to remember verbally presented information  Have them act out the story (a) in mime, if the children have difficulty expressing themselves verbally (b) with words if they have some degree of language fluency. 2. Acting out a common, daily activity such as: (a) shopping (b) ordering and eating a meal in a restaurant (c) family going on a holiday 3. Have the children create their own play and produce it.  - interpretation and expression of ideas - social interaction - language - motor abilities (the degree dependent upon the nature of the "play") - social skills - language skills - ability to sequence activities (in this instance involving long term memory and retreival of information) - this is a much more sophisticated activity and, as such, requires considerable skill in areas of imagination and creativity ability to develop meaningful sequences language social abilities  A. Puppet shows, either prespecified according to some story, or developed by the children themselves.  - skills developed are similar to those previously mentioned. Children who do not speak very much can often be induced to talk through puppets. They seem to provide some distance and degree of detachment for a child from his own anticipated failure.  35.  The difficulty level of these activities and others of a similar nature could be adapted according to the children's abilities. Silent parts could be introduced for children who don't talk very much, length of production could be varied according to attention spans, and the degree of skill necessary in listening and remembering could be accommodated. Music activities such as singing, rhythm bands, and listening also lend themselves to the development of a variety of skills. Following are some of the activities that could be useful in this area: Activity Skills developed 1. Group singing of familiar - verbal fluency songs. (Can be accompanied - long term and short term by teaching of new verses) verbal memory - rhythm 2. Action songs - same as above - motor coordination - coordination of verbal and motor output - memory for motor activities 3. Listening for and identifying - attending skills high and low notes, same and - listening skills different notes - ability to discriminate sounds 4. Dancing to music (highly - listening skills structure to free movement) - motor coordination - rhythm - balance As with drama, music activities could be varied according to ability levels and interests of the children. Gymnastic activities, although mainly focused upon motor coordination skills, could also be a vehicle for developing a child's ability to follow directions, providing opportunities for release of pent up energy, and developing initial number skills. Examples of such activities are:  36.  Activities 1. Trampoline activities 2. Somersaults 3. Vaulting box and springboard activities 4. Rolling  Skills developed - all these activities can help to improve a child's coordination - awareness of his own body, its abilities and limitation - muscle tone and strength if the activities are preceded by directions, one is also helping a child to develop skill in listening following direction number* *a .child's beginning concepts of number can be encouraged by such directions as "do two rolls", etc.  Sports form a very integral part of most children's - especially boys' - childhood. Lack of at least a minimum level of competence can be due to poor coordination and is often a source of social exclusion by peers. Thus,-training in this area not only develops skills of coordination, but also could provide the child with at least some competence in areas that are an integral part of the social life of many children. Examples of some activities that have proved useful in this area are: Activities "Catch" using a variety of objects such as balloons, sandbags, balls of varying sizes. Distance between players can be adapted according to abilities of the children. 2.  Adaptations of "floor hockey" using large balls and feet rather than hockey sticks  Skills developed - coordination - gross motor - fine motor - eye-motor - listening skills and memory skills - social skills - same as 1. with more emphasis on gross motor coordination as players move around physically  37. Activities  <+.  Skills  developed  "Hopscotch"  -  m o t o r s k i l l s s u c h as hopping, balancing, eyemotor c o o r d i n a t i o n  "Target p r a c t i c e " - u s i n g sand bags and targets with holes - d i s t a n c e from t a r g e t be a l t e r e d a c c o r d i n g ability levels  -  eye-motor  Under the activities crafts,  heading  s u c h as  and games.  and t h e y  cover  of  can to  "Arts  drawing, The  a wide  following  of  1.  L i s t e n i n g a n d memory s k i l l s can a l s o be developed with a l l tasks depending upon the e x t e n t and n a t u r e o f d i r e c t i o n s and the d u r a t i o n o f the activity.  2.  S o c i a l s k i l l s s u c h as i n t e r a c t i o n and c o o p e r a t i o n w i t h peers can be d e v e l o p e d i n a l l t a s k s as w e l l .  and C r a f t s "  activities  area  the  could  tasks.  are  included paper  dots,  and c o l o u r i n g ,  serve  Colouring  2.  Cutting  3.  Paper  «+.  Puppet  5.  Tic-Tac-Toe  and  Skills  pasting  pencil  arts,  purposes  follow: developed  f i n e motor c o n t r o l eye-motor c o o r d i n a t i o n visual perception abilities  -  a t t e n d i n g and l i s t e n i n g skills memory s k i l l s ( c a n b e developed by d i r e c t i n g " c o l o u r the b a l l r e d , the the house brown, and the sun o r a n g e " , e t c . - i f the c h i l d can i d e n t i f y colour)  folding making  games  of  and  -  -  Card  a variety  Some e x a m p l e s  Activities 1.  coordination  -  same  as  above  -  sequencing  -  numbers  and:  This program design is similar in nature to most recreational programs designed for children without any specific difficulties. However, the approach must be a significantly different one when working with children who have a variety of problems. The emphasis must be on the development of skills and providing a child with success-oriented experiences. c.  —  "  '  -  ~-  Operationally this means that the level of difficulty of a task must be adjusted so that the particular child is able to accomplish whatever task he sets out to complete. In order to provide successful experiences from the very beginning, one must have information about each child's abilities in all areas of activities the program intends to cover. SELECTION and ASSESSMENT of CHILDREN Applications for admission to the program must provide sufficient information to permit selection of learning disabled children and to facilitate initial task level placement. Two important sources of such information are parents and teachers. Each knows the particular child, but in different situations. Therefore, it is recommended that data be collected from both sources. However, one must consider the rights of the parents with respect to soliciting information about their children from other sources, and request permission from them before contacting the school in question. An application form completed by the parents, then, is the first step. The following categories of information should be sought: 1. Statistical data name, address, age, sex of child name, address, telephone number where parents can be reached school, grade, and teacher of the child.  39.  2. Open-ended questions such as: Why do you want your child to attend the program? What do you want your child to learn from the program? What are your child's strengths and weaknesses? 3. A checklist requiring parents to specify behaviourally their children's abilities to perform tasks that will be a part of the program, e.g. my child can catch a baseball: not at at a distance all of 0 - 2 f t . 2 - 4 f t . 4 - 6 f t . over 6 f t . My child can colour within the lines: not at only large large simple complex objects all objects pictures (i.e. with small parts such as a man, or a circles horse) and squares My child can cut with scissors: not at can cut but can cut along all can't follow a straight a straight line line  can cut can cut out out complex circles figures and squares  4. Permission to: request information from the school send a report to the school on completion of the program. Open ended questions permit parents to specify in their own words what they consider their child's major difficulty to be. This type of probing is likely to elicit whether or not a child has difficulty with such things as listening, sports, speach, etc., and is useful in selecting children with deficits' in incidentally learned skills. As one of the goals of the program would be to provide successful experiences for the children, prior knowledge as to his abilities in  40.  the various activities should decrease the trial and error period necessary to find the most advanced level at which he can succeed. By requiring the parents to complete the check list, a certain knowledge of their child's abilities is demanded. If this knowledge is not present, the' check list must be so designed to allow the parents to acquire it by interacting with the child in a specified manner. Therefore, two major points must be remembered when compiling a check list. First, no question should require a parent to make a value judgment concerning his child; all responses should be based on observable behavioural data. Second, the questions asked should only be pertinent to activities the parent can perform with his child if the information is not readily at hand. Permission must be obtained from the parents before requests for information are sent to the relevant schools. Therefore, the application form should include a brief statement explaining why it is important to have academic data about their child and the usefulness of a post program report to the child's teacher. However, the parents should be free to give their permission for the soliciting of information, the divulging of information, both, or neither. The wording of the request for information could be as follows: 1. I, , give my permission for the program personnel to request a report from my child, 's, teacher concerning his abilities and disabilities. I understand this information will be considered confidential with the confines of the program. Signed: Date:  41.  2. I, , give my permission to the program personnel to send, on completion of the program, a report concerning my child's performance during the summer, to the school that he will attend in September. Signed: Date: Upon receipt of application forms, requests for information should be sent to the schools that the children are attending. Data concerning the child's abilities in academic areas such as reading, spelling,arithmetic, printing and writing, should be sought as well as information about the child's performance in physical education, sports, art, socialization, language, and attention. Examples of the child's work in both his areas of strengths and weakness should also be requested. This data would further aid in selecting children with developmental discrepancies who would benefit from the program. In order to aid with task level placement, it is recommended that a behavioural check list, identical to the one completed by the parents, be completed by the program personnel for each child upon entry into the program. Tasks should be designed for the children to complete so that their performance can be recorded on the check list. Procedures for administering the tasks should be specific so that the technique is the same for each child. The resultant program-administered check list can then be compared with the parent-administered one. Any discrepancies in recorded performance are readily identifiable and can be further investigated. For example, a parent may have checked the item: My child can catch a baseball from a distance of 2-4ft. If the program-administered check list indicates 0-2ft. for the same item, one could readily identify this descrepancy in reporting and re-investigate the child's abilities in ball catching in order to determine the most difficult level at which  42.  the child could still succeed. PROGRAM ORGANIZATION In order to accommodate 120 children, it is recommended that they be divided into four groups of 30 children, each to attend 14 half day sessions during either the month of July or the month of August. Thus, there would be one group attending morning sessions and one attending o  afternoon sessions in July, and similarly for two groups in August. These 14 sessions would be divided into two days during the initial part of the first week of the month to be used for assessment and 12 sessions for the next three weeks to be used for programmed activities. The fifth working day of each week would be set aside for personnel conferences concerning the children and the program (one half day) and conferences with the consultant and parents who requested such a service (one half day). The remainder of the assessment week would be used to compile information on the children and to decide upon the type of activities relevant to their needs. Each session with the children should be two hours in length. Part of this time, twice a week, could be used for swimming if the necessary resources are available. Two different centres could be used for the program; one for the two groups in July and a second for the duration of the month of August. This would facilitate the accommodation of two different geographic areas. STAFF REQUIREMENTS and TRAINING In order to carry out this program, the following personnel are recommended: One consultant: a practicing professional or a doctoral student in the field of Learning Disabilities.  43.  Two Supervisors: graduate students at a Lester's level in Special Education with a major in Learning Disabilities. Fifteen Teenagers between the ages of 15 and 19 years to work directly with the children. Volunteers and/or paid employees to perform secretarial duties. The consultant would be responsible for the selection of children, selection and training of staff members, program development, and consulting with parents, program supervisors and program organizers, as well as compiling post-program reports on the children. The graduate students would assist with the selection of children, selection and training of teenage staff members, program development, and be responsible for direct supervision of the program. The teenagers would be assigned to work with specific children throughout the program. They would be responsible for keeping daily anecdotal reports on each child with whom they work. At least one volunteer or secretary should be hired to perform such duties as typing and duplicating application forms, providing a communicative link between program personnel and parents, and typing and mailing information such as reports to appropriate individuals. As the teenagers would be the individuals working directly with the children, the training of the former is of utmost importance. They must be taught to (a) assess children's behaviour by using the behavioural check list, (b) understand the various aspects of development that may be lagging in learning disabled children, (c) analyze the tasks that will be a part of the program in order to. adapt them for the individual child's behaviour, (d) record the behaviour of the children (rather than making judgments) in order to provide daily data on the progress of the children  AA.  and to indicate to the supervisor(s) in what area the staff needs assistance, (e) manage behaviour without resorting to punishment. The training of the staff needs to take place prior to the inception of the program. Tvro training periods, one of three days in duration, and one two days in duration, are recommended. The first session (three days) needs to take place before the total program begins, while the second session should be arranged for the time between the initial assessment and the beginning of the program. The rationale for the splitsession training is that only a certain amount of information can be imparted on a theoretical basis; the remainder is only meaningful in relation the the children themselves. The following structure and content is recommended for the initial session: Day I A.M. 1. Introduction to and discussion of the types of problems found in learning disabled children (lecture format). 2. Discussion session prompting staff members to describe probable behaviour of these children in certain specific task situations (i.e., colouring, playing "catch", etc.). Day I  3. Familiarization with behavioural check list. P.M. 1. Practice completing check list. 2. Description of the program: (a) content (b) organization (c) staff-child assignment arrangements.  45.  Day II  A.M. 1. The analysis of tasks and its importance in identifying (a) the success level for a particular child (b) the nature of his strengths and weaknesses. 2. V/orkshop session where staff members put into practice ideas presented in 1, using specific tasks.  Day II  P.M, 1. Assignment of children to staff members and discussion of individual strengths and weaknesses with relation to program.  Day III A.M. 1. Presentation of behaviour management techniques without the use of punishment. 2. Videotape presentation of children performing tasks. Staff members are to record behavioural observations. Day III P.M. 1. Lecture on behavioural recording procedures with emphasis on the difference between observations and judgments, (use of A.M. recordings as guides to areas needing attention.) The two days of the second session should be spent discussing each teenager's assigned children, their specific difficulties, and the ways in which they should be introduced into the program activities. In-service training should be continued by means of staff conferences once a week. This allows for discussion and resolution of difficulties arising throughout the course of the program. PARENTAL COMflJNI C ATI ON and PARTICIPATION It is important that parents understand the goals of the program, and have some means of communicating with program personnel if they have a need to do so. In addition, such a program provides an excellent  46.  vehicle for acquainting them with ways in which they can be of assistance to their children. The following procedures are recommended in order to achieve these objectives: 1. A general meeting prior to commencement of the program for all parents of accepted children. 2. Involvement of parents in the initial behavioural assessment of their children. 3. Involvement of parents in the program as participant observers. 4. A specific channel of communication for two-way contact between parents and program consultant.. 5. One half day per week reserved for scheduled meetings with individual parents who request this service. 6. Involvement of parents in post-program assessment of their children. 7. V/ritten reports to all parents concerning their children's performance. 8. A final general meeting to present the results of the program. General meeting. After selection of the children has taken place and the program has been designed, a general meeting should be arranged for all parents whose children are to be attending the summer activities. At this time, the director should present verbally an outline of the proposed project, stating in specific terms the expectations and limitations of the program. Procedures for communicating with the program representatives should be described, and the date of the final general meeting should be set. • A written resume of these same points should then be presented to each parent for future reference. Time allotted for questions from the floor is essential in order to clarify any issues of concern to the parents. Participant observers should be recruited at this meeting.  47.  ' Parental assessment of children's behaviour. By insisting that a behavioural check list be completed by the parents of each applicant, a minimum level of awareness is encouraged. This awareness is not only an awareness of what the child can and cannot do, but also an awareness of the types of activities that could be used to help children to develop skills. Participant observers. Involvement of the parents in the program itself is recommended to further increase parents' knowledge of ways in which they could be of assistance to their children. Since one of the goals of the program is to provide successful experiences for the children, parents would be trained to discriminate between a successful experience and a failure experience. A child would be considered to have had a "success-oriented" experience when: 1. he has followed the specified directions; 2. he has completed the task; 3 . the product is acceptable to the staff member; 4. the product is acceptable to the child. "Acceptable to the staff member" involves subjective judgment on the part of the teenager working with the child. If he/she could honestly give the child positive verbal reinforcement, the product would be considered acceptable. The product would be considered to be acceptable to the child if he verbally acknowledges or accepts the praise of a staff member, or if he does not reject the praise (i.e. destroy the product verbally or in fact). An experience would be considered a failure experience if one or more of the criteria for success is not met.  48.  A parent would then be assigned to the major group in which his (her) child has been placed but attached to a particular staff member who is not responsible for the parent's child. For the duration of one session each week, the parent would be requested to do a frequency count of success or failure experiences for each of the two children working with the particular staff member. The purpose of this aspect of the project is to expose the parents to: 1. the activities used to help their children develop skills 2. the importance and functioning of task adaptation in order to provide successful experiences for their children. By involving the parents as participant observers, they would be directly exposed to the program, rather than being the recipients of verbally presented information. The assignment technique would permit the parent to view his child's particular group without being involved directly with his own child. Structured observation would focus the parent's attention on one of the main goals and would avoid the awkwardness often associated with non-participant observation. The frequency counts could also be used for evaluation purposes. Channels of communication. There should be a receiving centre for parent inquiries. A volunteer or a secretary could be responsible for answering the telephone during certain specified hours and fielding requests to the appropriate individual. A similar procedure could be carried out in order to respond to written inquiries. This centre and the staff member assigned to it could also be used for the dissemination of information from the program to the parents. Parent conferences. Parents who would wish to consult with the  49.  program personnel concerning their child should be able to request conference time. As one half of Wednesday has been reserved for such occurrences, appointments could be made through the communication centre. These appointments would have to be made sufficiently early to allow for collection of data concerning the particular child. Post program assessment. After the completion of the program, parents should again be requested to complete the behavioural check list concerning their child. This further directs parents toward observing their child's performance. Two further questions should be included in this final form: 1. What do you feel your child has learned from this program? 2. Have you any further comments? A series of questions with forced-choice responses could also be added. Each of these questions would be based on one task item specified by the behavioural check list. The format would be as follows: My child's skill in ball catching is: the same as it was before the program . worse better Parent perceived improvement could be compared with check list and program improvement. Written reports. If written reports are to be sent to each parent, one must allow for one half day per child for the compilation of the data. Secretarial services would be essential for typing and mailing. Final meeting. If a final meeting is to be a part of the overall program, the format should include a presentation of the general outcomes and recommendations for the future. Again, time should be scheduled  50.  for questions from the floor. It is further recommended that a fee be charged for each parent who has a child enrolled in the program. This would assist in defraying the cost of such an undertaking, as well as acting as a deterent to those who wish to keep their children occupied during the summer months when there may not be any reason for the child to attend such a program. EVALUATION The model is not a Utopia, but a program designed to accommodate the needs specified by people within the comniuni.ty, using the resources available in reality. Although the pilot project did not result in data as conclusive as one might have wished, they do lead to the previously suggested model which may now be tested. In order to assess the effectiveness of the recommended changeSjinnovations^ and elaborations, evaluation should be of prime concern to individuals who wish to organize and implement such a summer program.  51.  References Barsch, R. Achieving perceptual-motor efficiency: A space-oriented approach to learning. Seattle, V/ash.: Special Child Publications,  im  Bateman, B. An educator's view of a diagnostic approach to learning disorders. In J. Hellmuth (Ed. ), Learning disorders. Vol. I. Seattle, V/ash.: Special Child Publications, 1965. Bateman, B. Lecture presented at the University of Oregon, 1968. The celdic report: A national study of Canadian children with emotional and learning disorders. Canada: Leonard Crainford for the Commission on Emotional and Learning Disorders i n Children, 1970. Frostig, M. & Home, D. The Frostig program for the development of visual perception. Chicago"! Fallett Publishing Co., 196<4. Getman, G.M. The visuo-motor complex i n the acquisition of learning s k i l l s . In J. Hellmuth (Ed. ), Learning disorders. Vol. 1. Seattle, Wash.: Special Child Publications, 1965. Johnson, D. & Myklebust H. Stratton, 1967.  Learning disabilities.  N.Y.:  Kephart, N.C. The slow learner i n the classroom. 2d ed. Ohio: Charles E. Merrill Publishing Company, 1971.  Grune & Columbus,  Kirk, S.A. & McCarthy, J.J. The I l l i n o i s test of psycholinguistic a b i l i t i e s . Urbana, 111.: The University of I l l i n o i s Press, 1961. Kirk, S.A., McCarthy, J.J. and Kirk, V/.D. Examiner's manual - I l l i n o i s test of psycholinguistic a b i l i t i e s . (Rev. ed.) I l l i n o i s : Board of Trustees at the University of I l l i n o i s , 1968. McCarthy, J.J. & McCarthy, J.F. Bacon, Inc., 1969.  Learning disabilities.  Boston:  Myers, P.I. & Hammill, D.D. Methods for learning disorders. John Wiley & Sons, Inc., 1969.  Allyn &  N.Y.:  Roach, E.G. & Kephart, N.C. The Purdue perceptual-motor survey. Columbus: Charles E. Merrill Publishing" Co., 1966.  APPENDICES  APPENDIX A Proposed Pilot Project In mid-May of 1971 a representative of the Surrey Association for Children with Learning Disabilities employed a professional consultant and two graduate students to design, implement, supervise and evaluate a two month summer program for children learning disabilities.  The purpose  of this project was four-fold: 1.  To help children 5 to 11 years old who have disabilities in body coordination, visual perception, and auditory discrimination;  2.  To provide leadership training and a practical experience for university students and teens to work with these children;  3.  To acquaint parents with materials and methods they can use at home to continue this help for their children;  4.  To develop this as an ongoing service i n Surrey following successful completion of the project.  As well as specifying these aims, the organizers had arranged for four major centres within the municipality of Surrey to accommodate the program. These schools, with adjacent swimming pool f a c i l i t i e s , had been selected i n order to serve as wide a geographic area as possible. Each centre was to provide a program__for 20 to 30 children twice a week (one morning and one afternoon session) throughout the eight week summer period. 120 individuals could be accommodated.  Thus a possible  One day per week was to be used  for the purpose of staff conferences and parent interviews. Pool f a c i l i t i e s had been reserved for the anticipated group on Monday, Tuesday, Thursday, and Friday mornings from noon u n t i l 12:'30 p.m.  The  remainder of the two hour morning session and the entire two hour afternoon  54.  s e s s i o n was t o c o n s i s t o f p l a n n e d programs o f a c t i v i t i e s t h a t were t o take p l a c e i n t h e s c h o o l gymnasiums. of  t h e proposed  weekly  Figure 2 i s a diagramatic representation  schedule.  Mon. a.m.  10:30-11:30 11:30-12:30  program swi mmi ng  2:00-4:00  p.m.  program  C  C  l  Tues. Wed.  C  3  Thurs. F r i .  staff conf.  C  parent conf.  2  C  2 l  A  C  °3  C = centre Fig.  2.  Proposed  weekly s c h e d u l e f o r t h e S u r r e y summer program  F i f t e e n t e e n a g e r s were t o he h i r e d and t r a i n e d b y a c o n s u l t a n t and two g r a d u a t e  students.  These young s t a f f members were t o c a r r y out t h e  d e s i g n e d program w i t h t h e c h i l d r e n under t h e d i r e c t s u p e r v i s i o n o f t h e u n i v e r s i t y students. The  The l a t t e r were t o be r e s p o n s i b l e t o t h e c o n s u l t a n t .  s t a f f members were t o move from c e n t r e t o c e n t r e , w o r k i n g w i t h each  group o f c h i l d r e n i n t u r n . The to  o r g a n i z e r s had arranged  f o r the  gymnastic  equipment i n t h e s c h o o l s  be a v a i l a b l e f o r use b y t h e program p a r t i c i p a n t s .  The sum o f one hundred  d o l l a r s had been a l l o t t e d f o r c r a f t s u p p l i e s . The budget a l l o w e d f o r one hundred and f i f t y  d o l l a r s worth o f s t e n o -  g r a p h i c s e r v i c e s and e v a l u a t i o n expenses o f up t o f i f t y  dollars.  F o l l o w i n g i s a copy o f t h e funded p r o p o s a l t h a t f o r m u l a t e d t h e working document f o r t h e program:  55. PROPOSED PILOT PROJECT Reason for Project: The municipality of Surrey covers an area of 139,000 square miles. Within this large area there are 17,000 school children and 10 per cent of these children have learning disabilities. Not a l l parents recognize this and, i n most instances, i t does not come to light until the child starts school. Summer plans of the Park and Recreation Commission and other community agencies are not including any program for these children during July and August. If we are able to operate our proposed program, both the Recreation Commission and schools have indicated a willingness to make their f a c i l i t i e s available to us. Objective: A pilot project to be undertaken by the Surrey YHCA-YWCA and the Association for Children with Learning Disabilities; to design a beneficial two-month summer program for these children i n the municipality of Surrey. Purpose: 1.  to help children 5 to 11 years old who have disabilities i n body coordination, visual perception, and auditory discrimination; to provide leadership training and a practical experience for university students and teens to work with these children;  3.  to acquaint parents with materials and methods they can use at continue this help for their children; to develop this as an on-going service i n Surrey following the successful completion of the project.  Proposed Program Design: Dates - June 28, 1971, to August 27, 1971. Location - four major centres within the surrey municipality having both school and pool f a c i l i t i e s . Staff - one half-time f u l l y qualified consultant and two university students, fifteen teens (15 years plus). Training - a training course to be designed for a l l staff by the consultant and two university students; - a meeting one morning a week of a l l staff with the consultant to discuss problems and any need for further help; - an evaluation and report to be completed at the end of August  Program - content to be planned by those p a r t i c i p a t i n g i n leadership r o l e s (consultant, students and teens); - there w i l l be four separate groups of 20 to 30 children i n four locations, each meeting two hours twice a week. The teens w i l l r e l a t e with the children on the basis of one leader to four participants; - one afternoon a week to be used f o r s p e c i a l outings ( p i c n i c , t r i p to the park, etc.) to be planned by the s t a f f . Budget:  (a) Personnel S a l a r i e s : 1. q u a l i f i e d trained consultant f o r 2 months at $450 2. 2 u n i v e r s i t y students at $375 each f o r 2 months 3. 15 teens at $14-0 per month f o r 2 months (based on $1.75 per hour)  $  900.00  1,500.00 4,200.00  (b)  Fringe Benefits (CPP and WC)  35.00  (c)  Evaluation Expenses (report, etc.)  50.00  Sub-total  6,685.00  Other Expenses: (a)  Program: 1.  2. 3. (b)  Schools (no rent) Janitor fee 8 hours a week at $4.53 per hour f o r 2 months Pool (no rent) Lifeguard fee 8 hours a week at $3.25 an hour f o r 2 months O f f i c e ( i n i t i a l f l y e r and stenographic help)  208.00 150.00  Transportation from 1 centre to another, 20 miles a day at 150 per mile  (c)  289.92  Craft supplies  96.00 100.00  Sub-total TOTAL  843.92 $7,528.92  APPENDIX B Selection of Children It was decided to recruit applicants by advertising in the local newspaper and circulating an announcement (Figure 3) throughout the elementary schools in the municipality.  Application for admission to the program  was to be made by the parents on behalf of their children.  A telephone  interview was the vehicle used for collecting the pertinent data.  The  advertising appeared during the f i r s t week in June; the deadline for enrollment was the end of the second week of the same month. Criteria for selection were as follows: 1.  Applicant must be between the ages of 5 years, 0 months and 11 years, 11 months.  2.  Applicant must reside in the municipality of Surrey.  3.  Applicant must be learning disabled.  Disorders of motor activity, perception, symbolization, attention, memory and emotionality (Myers and Hammill, 1969), the latter in combination with one or more of the f i r s t five, were considered characteristic of learning disabled children.  SURREY YMCA-YWCA and THE ASSOCIATION FOR CHILDREN WITH LEARNING DISABILITIES have received a federal government grant to run a pilot project aimed at helping children who are having problems in school and those who have pre-school tests indicating they might have such a probl upon entering school. The course w i l l be co-ordinated and counselled by PEGGY KOOPMAN, ED.D., ASSISTANT PROFESSOR, DEPT. OF SPECIAL EDUCATION, U.B.C. Graduate students MARILYN DUMARESQ and MARY SEATON w i l l assist. The program w i l l provide employment for fifteen teenagers to work with these children. Classes w i l l be held in four areas of Surrey: Lord Tweedsmuir Sr. S e c , Sunnyside Elementary, K.B. V/oodward Elementary and Riverdale Elementary. Classes w i l l be held twice weekly with swimming at a nearby pool included i n one session a week. Parent interviews w i l l be available on Wednesday afternoons. The program w i l l attempt to meet individual needs and in order to prepare this, interested parents are asked to phone Mrs. S. Carlile at 526-2485 or 581-9311 to register and provide information for a questionnaire which w i l l be compiled for each child. AGE RANGE i s 5 to 11 years of age with preference given to pre-schoolers and those in Surrey District. ** REGISTRATION BY PHONE IS June 7th to June 10th.  Fig.  3  Bulletin circulated throughout elementary schools advertising program  59.  A questionnaire was designed to be completed during the telephone interview. Information requested fell into several categories. The first was relevant statistical data such as name of child, age, sex, grade and school; name, address, phone and occupation of parents. Since the program was to operate in four different areas in the municipality of Surrey, the informant was asked whether or not the parents would be able to supply transportation. Idealistically, it was hoped that all children would be assigned to groups in the vicinity of their residence, but it was anticipated that some areas would be more densely populated than others, hence necessitating travel in some instances in order to numerically balance the groups. The interviewer was also asked if family holidays were planned and, if so, when and for how long. As it v/as anticipated that there would be more applications than positions available, it was felt that preference should be given to those children who could be present for the majority of the programs. The last section of the application form dealt with the child's behaviour. Two open-ended questions were asked: 1. Why do you want your child to attend this program? 2. What do you see as his major difficulties? The third question was in the form of a behavioural check list. The following twelve behaviours'were included: clumsy or awkward; does not play well with other children; shy; has difficulty working with his hands; afraid of failure; cannot sit still; forgetful; disobedient; does not express himself well;  has trouble concentrating; shows o f f , needs attention; has trouble following d i r e c t i o n s . The interviewer was asked to respond a f f i r m a t i v e l y i f the behaviour was descriptive of his/her c h i l d , negatively i f i t was not. Question 4 pertained to academic performance.  Subject areas included  reading; arithmetic; p h y s i c a l education; science; s p e l l i n g ; p r i n t i n g or writing.  The performance  c r i t e r i a were good, average, poor.  Questions 5 and 6 requested information concerning the c h i l d ' s strengths and i n t e r e s t s . A t o t a l of 135 applications f o r admission to the program were received. A f t e r s e l e c t i o n of 118 children who met the aforementioned c r i t e r i a , the 17 remaining were rejected f o r the following reasons: Holidays planned f o r 4 weeks or more Speech problems only Predominantly emotional problems  6 3 8  I t was f e l t that children who would be absent f o r more than h a l f of the program could not benefit s u f f i c i e n t l y from the remaining time to warrant t h e i r i n c l u s i o n to the exclusion of others. In 4 instances, speech was mentioned the program.  as the reason f o r r e f e r r a l to  In these cases, follow-up telephone conversations were  arranged i n order to determine whether or not the problem was s o l e l y one of a r t i c u l a t i o n .  One c h i l d was further described as "having d i f f i c u l t y  p i c k i n g up l i t t l e things; used to shake when p r i n t i n g " .  Although t h i s  c h i l d was also having a r t i c u l a t i o n d i f f i c u l t i e s , he was accepted on the b a s i s of h i s apparent f i n e motor d i f f i c u l t i e s .  The 3 children who were not  accepted f o r the program appeared to have only a r t i c u l a t i o n d i f f i c u l t i e s , not learning d i s a b i l i t i e s .  61.  The 8 children, who were felt to he primarily emotionally disturbed, were also rejected as it was thought that they would not benefit greatly from a program designed to assist children with learning disabilities. . It should be pointed out, however, that no child was refused on the basis of secondary or multiple handicaps. As previously mentioned, articulation difficulties did not bar a child from the group if he also had problems in areas with which the program was designed to deal. Similarly, learning disabled children with physical disabilities were also accepted.  APPENDIX C  Program Design After the selection of 120 children who were to attend the summer sessions, a tentative program v/as designed. The basis for the design wasthe information supplied by the parents concerning the nature of their children's difficulties. An initial gross sort of the application forms resulted in two major distinct categories of problems and a miscellaneous group. The first category of children were the ones with assorted visual problems. Difficulties reported by the parents were vision (non-specific), visual perception, sequencing, space, reversing right and left. Another group of children were reported by their parents as having coordination problems. Mentioned by this group were coordination (non-specific), eye-hand coordination, eye-foot coordination, fine motor coordination, gross motor coordination. The miscellaneous category consisted of diverse and/or multiple difficulties such as short attention span, immaturity, social, comprehension, speech, hyperactivity, doesn't listen, hearing, language, and assorted academic difficulties. A finer sort resulted in the formation of six treatment groups designed to develop the following skills and abilities:  63.  Treatment Group Auditory  Language  Attention Gross Motor  Fine Motor Visual  Skills and Abilities to be developed discrimination of sounds Memory: short term long term sequencing of verbally presented material listening fluency (quantitative) content (qualitative) word association sequencing of verbal output attention span with reference to auditory, visual, and motor tasks balance muscular controlgross coordination eye-motor coordination muscle strength fine motor coordination eye motor coordination finger dexterity eye motor coordination discrimination of visual stimuli figure-ground differentiation sequencing of visual information memory: short term long term  Activities designed to develop the aforementioned skills had to satisfy one other major criteria. They had to havestronger recreational associations than academic associations. For example: the activity of copying visually presented material would use as a stimulus a pictorial object rather than an alphabetic symbol. The result of this approach was a total program that bore greater surface resemblance to a summer recreation program than to a summer school. The major difference between the former and this pilot project designed specifically for children with learning disabilities was one of intent. Most recreation programs are designed to encourage skill mastery. f  64.  They assume that the basic developmental abilities are present. Most program participants elect to attend activity sessions in areas where they already possess some degree of skill or competence. If the individual is not minimally familiar with the area, he at least possesses the inclination to learn. The learning disabilities summer project, on the other hand, intended to develop basic skills in areas the children had previously avoided due to a history of associated failure experiences. However, as described herein, the actual activities used are similar to those found in many regular recreation programs. AUDITORY GROUP ACTIVITIES Tasks in this group were designed to develop skills involving the auditory process. Some exercises emphasized discrimination abilities. These consisted of identifying sounds and associating them with the appropriate visual stimulus, either two or three dimensional, and differentiating musical notes with reference to pitch and duration. Short-term auditory memory, tasks involved reproducing rhythmical sequences tapped out with a pencil or clapped. The output required varied. Sometimes it would take the form of mimicry; at other times, it needed to be translated, i.e., the rhythmical pattern stimulus would be presented as a series of claps, the output would be required in the form of ball bouncing. Games, such as "I packed my bag", demanded an item response (verbal) from the first child; the repetition of this item, and the addition of a second item by the second child, and so on, the number of items to be remembered increasing by increments of one with each successive player. Stories of varying length were presented to the children verbally. Output was required in varying forms such as repetition, selection and enumeration  65.  of sequential events, and responses to direct questions. A similar procedure was followed using a radio to provide the auditory stimulus; verbal instructions were presented to the children, output again taking various forms. In some instances,' a drawing or painting was required with specific characteristics; other directions requested sequential gross motor activities such as completion of an obstacle course according to the verbally specified pattern. Singing was an integral part of this group's program. Children were taught words, melody, and actions to songs of varying length and complexity. Games of catch were played with the group assembled in a circle, each member having been assigned a "name" (e.g., a number, the name of a cartoon character, the name of a country, etc. ). The person holding the ball had to select an individual, throw him the ball, and call out the label assigned to the receiver. LANGUAGE GROUP ACTIVITIES Activities for the language group were designed to increase verbal output in quantity and quality. Initial output was encouraged through verbal imitation in the guise of a shouting game. Children had to repeat verbal stimuli in as loud a voice as possible, trying to outdo each other. Singing as a group activity was also part of the program. Initially, the songs were those familiar to all individuals, and gradually, new material was introduced and taught. Association games consisted of a stimulus word presented to the group, each member being required to express a related verbal response. A game of catch was expanded by adding a speech component. Each child receiving the ball was expected to say one word upon receipt of said object. "Statue an activity involving initial gross motor movements and cessation of same  66.  upon a verbal command, was extended to require various verbal responses as well as a motor one. The children took turns on the game "Simon Says". During this task, the group was expected to respond to commands such as "Simon says touch your toes, shoulders, etc.". On other occasions, they participated in a game of "army" each group member taking his turn as the drill sargeant. A selection of activities involved more complex verbal behaviour. Stories were presented to the children who were then asked to recall the information in its entirety or in part. Assorted manual activities, such as painting and puppet construction, were followed by group or one-to-one discussions. Each child was asked to relate verbally the steps he had taken in the production of his object and then describe the completed item. Words were presented and the children were asked to develop stories around these as core words. General discussion topics varied according to the interests and past experiences of the group members. Assorted pictures were used to promote verbal interaction within the group. A further group of activities centered around role playing. Children practiced mime, played the part of animals, pretended to be adults in a restaurant with unlimited financial resources, participated in verbal inter actions using puppets, as well as generating and producing short plays, each child taking a part appropriate for his ability level. ATTENTION GROUP ACTIVITIES The tasks in this group were diverse in nature. They varied with reference to time (i.e., time required for completion) and stimulus modalit The major input channels were visual and auditory. Activities requiring short attention span with emphasis on visual input were: magneto cars; tic-tac-toe; hand labyrinth, and fishing.  67.  "Magneto cars: made use of a 6" x 8" surface with a series of reads depicted on the upper surface. Three-dimensional bridges were erected at various points along the route. Two small magnetized cars, capable of moving freely across the field, were on the road surface. The unit was encased in clear plastic. By manipulating a magnet cn the under surface of the track, a child could move the cars along the roads and under the various bridges. Tic-tac-toe made use of a 3 x 3 matrix. Two players, each represented by a different symbol, played alternately, attempting to assemble three of their own symbols in a horizontal, vertical, or diagonal line. Hand labyrinth, a three-dimensional maze, required motor manipulation. A small, free moving sphere had to be moved through the maze without dropp into holes placed on the periphery. The materials for the fishing game consisted of small fishing rods with magnets instead of hooks. A paper fish pond contained magnetized fish. The object of the game was to "hook" a fish. Several categories of activities had more flexibility with relation to the time factor. These included various card games, directed drawing and colouring, puzzle completion, paper and pencil tasks such as mazes, "follow-the-dots" and copying, rollage construction, sorting activities, and dominoes. The advantage of time flexibility in an activity designed to improve the skill of attending is the degree to which it can be structure allowing the child to experience closure and hence some degree of satisfaction regardless of his attention span. Finding embedded figures in a large visual field, making puppets, playing "pick-up sticks" and completing a game, called "Vertigo", require a more sophisticated degree of attention. "Vertigo" consists of several balanced pairs of wires and multiple discs of various weights. The wire  68. pairs must be placed one upon the other i n a vertical fashion. are then positioned on the extended arms of this tower.  The weights  Each wire spoke  must be weighted without destroying the delicate balance of the structure. Badminton and various b a l l games require attending to a moving target while activities such as listening to stories and following verbal directions require auditory attention. GROSS MOTOR GROUP ACTIVITIES Activities i n this group consisted of tasks designed to improve balance as well as muscular control and coordination.  Children were taught how  to use a trampoline and to coordinate bouncing with various body positions (e.g., sitting, kneeling, standing). They were taught to walk, jump, and somersault on large foam rubber fields.  These fields consisted of assorted  sized pieces of rubber held together by wide mesh string net.  The resultant  mat was approximately 18 feet i n length, 6 feet wide and 1 foot deep. Boards with narrow bases and broad tops were used as balancing beams. Children practiced walking with various bean bags balanced on parts of their bodies.  Spring-boards and vaulting boxes were employed i n the traditional  gymnastic fashion.  Skipping with a rope was practiced on the ground as  well as on the trampoline.  Tumbling and physical exercises were taught  using rubber mats for safety and comfort. hoops were utilized.  Leap-frog was played and hoola-  Track activities, such as running and three-legged  races, were a part of the program. At one school, a planned playground contained wide cement cylinders and a graduated series of logs.  The former  were used for crawling activities, the latter as training for climbing. Tasks with a large eye-motor coordination component were hockey, baseball, basketball, football, badminton, croquet, bowling, various games of catch, ring-toss, and obstacle course racing.  69. FINE MOTOR GROUP ACTIVITIES Nearly a l l the a c t i v i t i e s i n the fine motor group required some degree of eye-motor coordination as well as fine motor s k i l l s . t h i s was the manipulation  of clay.  The exception t o  Tasks•involving t h i s material could be  developed t o improve manual dexterity without the necessity of v i s u a l s k i l l s . Paper and p e n c i l a c t i v i t i e s included drawing, copying, and t r a c i n g . S k i l l with s c i s s o r s was enhanced through exercises such as free form cutting, cutting along s t r a i g h t l i n e s , and cutting out objects and designs of varying difficulty.  Manipulation  of brushes was taught through the a c t i v i t i e s of  p a i n t i n g and pasting. Weaving, braiding, paper f o l d i n g , and plucking s t r i n g s of a z i t h e r were also encouraged t o increase fine motor coordination as were projects such as puppet construction and the creation of characters from empty egg-shell cartons.  Games using moving p r o j e c t i l e s such as b a l l s , bean  bags, rings, and tiddly-winks formed another part of t h i s program. Dominoes, block puzzles, and "Vertigo" (see Attention Group A c t i v i t i e s ) required organization and manipulation  of many small-sized pieces while  assorted card games required the same s k i l l s using various pieces  simultan-  eously. VISUAL GROUP ACTIVITIES A c t i v i t i e s designed f o r members of the v i s u a l group were s i m i l a r and, i n many cases, the same as those designed f o r the fine motor group. However, i n this- case, the emphasis was on the t r a i n i n g of v i s u a l rather than f i n e motor coordination.  skills  Again, there was a large eye-motor  coordination component i n many of the tasks. Paper and p e n c i l a c t i v i t i e s consisted of t r a c i n g , using both s t e n c i l s and two-dimensional p i c t u r e s ; copying;  drawing step-by-step  and free form;  70.  picture completion; mazes; following sequences of dots, and coding games. Other tasks included painting, cutting, pasting, and colouring. Matching activities such as dominoes and card games (e.g., "old-maid") were a part of the program designed to help the children discriminate similarities and differences. Painting by number, finding embedded figures, locatin specific objects in a large visual field, and determining incorrect aspects of pictures were activities used to assist the children in the development of discrimination and figure ground skills. Orgami (the art of paper-folding) was taught by having children watch the staff member execute a particular fold. The group members were then expected to produce the same fold using their own paper. End products consisted of such objects as boats, hats, frogs, etc. Tasks involving visual tracking were also part of the program. Such activities were games of catch using bean bags or balls; badminton, and ping-pong. Craft- activities included making paper mache puppets, beading, weaving (using paper and cardboard), and the construction of paper ring chains.  APPENDIX D I n i t i a l Assessment and Treatment Group Assignment Having determined the six major areas of disabilities represented by the selected population that was to participate in the program, an informal testing device was developed in order to assess the children's entering behaviour.  The purpose of this battery was to assist with  appropriate group placement. Descriptive data from the application form and patterns of task performance were assessed i n order to determine in which of the six areas the child was experiencing the most difficulty.  The child was then assigned  to the most appropriate group. Teenage staff members were assigned to a particular task and administered this to each of the 120 children. Following i s a description of the several tasks designed to assess the children's a b i l i t i e s in each of the six major areas of the program. AUDITORY TASKS Five tasks were used to assess auditory behaviour.  One of these  (Morse code) involved a strong visual component and was used, in combination with other data, for assignment to either the visual or the auditory group.  This task w i l l be discussed on page 77.  involved two categories.  Another of the five tasks  This task, "A Story", contained a large language  component as well as an auditory one. Two of the auditory tasks were auditory closure and sound blending. The wordlists of the ITPA (Kirk, McCarthy, and Kirk, 1968) of the same name were used as models.  72.  In the auditory closure task, an incomplete word is presented verbally to the child (e.g., -encil, -rayon). The child must recognize and verbalize the appropriate Gestalt (e.g., pencil, crayon). In sound blending, on the other hand, the child is expected to synthesize parts to form a whole word. In this case, the stimulus might to t - a - ble, the appropriate response, table. The use of the third auditory task was discontinued due to technical difficulties. The task consisted of a sequential presentation of five sound stimuli, each accompanied by three two-dimensional pictorial representations of objects, one being the source of the particular sound. The child's task was to select the appropriate visual stimulus in each case. The task, labelled "A story", had both auditory and language components. In this instance, the child was read a short paragraph. He was then expected to: (a) retell the story; (b) answer factual questions, and (c) answer interpretive questions. Incomplete data was available on this task as there were technical difficulties in recording the child's retelling of the story. LANGUAGE Apart from "A Story", two other language tasks were developed to assess language behaviour. These two tasks required that the child's responses be taped; however, background noise was found to interfere to such an extent as to render the data almost undecipherable. The first task, "finger puppets", used small animal figures that could be placed over one finger. The child was presented verbally with.a situation, told to pretend he was the animal represented by the puppet, and then respond to questions directed via the examiner's puppet.  73.  The second task consisted of three p i c t u r e s presented sequential!;/ to the c h i l d . (b)  Ke was asked:  (a)  to t e l l a story about the p i c t u r e ;  what happened before the p i c t u r e was taken; ( c ) what i s happening  now, and (d) what w i l l happen next. ATTENTION TASKS Two tasks were devised i n order to assess c h i l d r e n ' s s k i l l i n t h i s area. The f i r s t was c a l l e d , "Who has seen the candy?". were three cups and one candy.  The m a t e r i a l s necessary  The c h i l d was to watch as the examiner  placed the candy under the center cup.  He continued watching as the exam-  i n e r made 5 changes i n the p o s i t i o n of the cups.  The c h i l d was then to  i d e n t i f y under which cup the candy may be found.  Three t r i a l s were  presented:  i n each one the candy was placed under a d i f f e r e n t cup; the  movement of the cups remained the same throughout the three t r i a l s .  This  movement was slow, the purpose being t o allow the c h i l d to v i s u a l l y t r a c k the appropriate cup.  The object of the task was to determine  whether or not the c h i l d could concentrate on the cups, i g n o r i n g whatever e l s e was going on around him.  The a d m i n i s t r a t o r was to record the c h i l d ' s  response and the number of times he (the c h i l d ) looked away from the cups. A c h i l d who looked away many times on one t r i a l , or more than twice on two or more t r i a l s , was considered t o have f a i l e d . The second task was c a l l e d " l i g h t a t t e n t i o n " .  Two small f l a s h l i g h t s  were used, the c h i l d having one and the examiner the other. were covered w i t h coloured f a b r i c to prevent g l a r e .  The f l a s h l i g h t s  The c h i l d was d i r e c t e d  to watch the f l a s h l i g h t held and turned on by the examiner f o r two minutes and i n s t r u c t e d to turn h i s (the c h i l d ' s ) on as soon as the examiner's went o f f . his  The examiner was to record the number of times the c h i l d turned  eyes or head away from the t a r g e t during the four 30-second periods.  If  74. the c h i l d looked away two or more times i n more than one 30-second period, he was  considered to have f a i l e d .  GROSS MOTOR TASKS Four tasks were considered f o r t h i s group.  I n i t i a l l y , i t was  decided  to have one task designed to test balance and posture, and one to t e s t muscle strength.  The f i r s t was  an adaptation of the walking board task  from the Purdue Perceptual Motor Survey (Roach and Kephart, 1966), and the second involved the c h i l d l i f t i n g various weights with h i s four limbs. This l a t t e r task proved to have too many problems inherent i n i t s design and abandoned i n favor of the "hammer and n a i l task". c h i l d was  For t h i s , the  expected to hammer n a i l s i n t o a piece of wood.  However, during  the i n i t i a l t e s t i n g session, the noise factor from t h i s task i n t e r f e r e d greatly with other tasks being administered so i t was  abandoned f o r an  adaptation of the Kraus-Weber subtest from the Purdue Perceptual Motor Survey. The walking board task required that a c h i l d walk forward, backward and sideways with a r i g h t and a l e f t lead, along the 4" side of a 2" x 4" plank 8 feet long.  The examiner was  to record the number of times a c h i l d  stopped, and the number of times he stepped o f f the board f o r each of four t r i a l s , and to report i f he rushed or had  difficulty.  I f the c h i l d stepped o f f the board two or more times on more than t r i a l , or i f there were negative comments on the record sheet, he  one  was  considered to have f a i l e d . The fourth gross motor task, the adaptation of the Kraus-Weber test of muscular f i t n e s s (Roach and Kephart, 1966), consisted of s i x items: 1.  c h i l d proceeds from prone p o s i t i o n to s i t t i n g p o s i t i o n without the use of h i s hands (examiner holds feet to the f l o o r ) ;  75.  2. similar to 1., but with knees bent; 3. same initial position—legs raised 10 inches from the floor and held for 10 seconds (legs straight); 4. child lies with stomach on the floor, feet held, head, shoulders and chest raised off the floor for 10 seconds; 5. child lies face down, head on hands, raises legs off the floor keeping knees straight and holds for 10 seconds; 6. child touches fingertips to floor with legs together and straight. "Pass" consists of three or more successes. FINE MOTOR TASKS Three tasks were designed to test the children's fine motor ability. The first of these was "needle threading". Five needles of varying size were presented to the child, one at a time, beginning with the largest and proceeding in order of size. The child was to thread each needle in turn. Recording consisted of noting with which hand the child held the needle and the length of time it took'to complete each threading. Failure criteria consisted of a long time for task completion, negative comments, and change of hands. The "shoe-lacing" task required that a child successfully lace a man's shoe with six holes. "Bow-tying" demanded that a child be able to tie a bow successfully. VISUAL TASKS Four tasks were designed to determine whether or not a child had visual problems. A fifth task involved both the visual and auditory processes and thus was used in combination for assignment to either the visual or the auditory group.  76. "Form c o p y i n g and form r e p r o d u c t i o n " was one o f t h e t a s k s used. c o n s i s t e d o f two p a r t s .  Each c h i l d was p r e s e n t e d s e r i a l l y w i t h t h r e e  c a r d s upon w h i c h were v a r i o u s shapes. u s i n g paper and p e n c i l .  The c h i l d had t o copy the d e s i g n s  He was t h e n p r e s e n t e d w i t h a second s e r i e s o f  t h r e e forms each p r e s e n t e d f o r 10 seconds. the  It  A t t h e end o f t h e t i m e l i m i t ,  s t i m u l u s was removed and t h e c h i l d d i r e c t e d t o draw t h e d e s i g n from  memory.  S c o r i n g c r i t e r i a v/as p a s s - f a i l .  V i s u a l t r a c k i n g was t h e second t a s k i n t h i s group. c o n s i s t e d on one b o a r d 1/2  The m a t e r i a l s  i n c h t h i c k , 2 f e e t wide and 3 f e e t h i g h .  A  s w i t c h - b a c k p a t t e r n had been c u t t h r o u g h t h e b o a r d f r o m t o p t o bottom. A y e l l o w b a l l , one i n c h i n d i a m e t e r , was s l o w l y moved a l o n g t h e p a t h . The c h i l d was d i r e c t e d t o w a t c h t h e b a l l wherever i t went, w i t h o u t moving h i s head.  R e c o r d i n g p r o c e d u r e i n v o l v e d n o t i n g whether o r n o t t h e c h i l d  had  d i f f i c u l t y f o l l o w i n g t h e v i s u a l s t i m u l u s and, i f he d i d , was i t f r o m l e f t to right;  r i g h t to l e f t , or both.  The c h i l d was p a s s e d i f he had no  difficulty. " P i c t u r e s o r t i n g " was a t h i r d t a s k .  Here t h e c h i l d r e n were p r e s e n t e d  w i t h a s e r i e s of p i c t u r e s t h a t r e q u i r e d s o r t i n g a c c o r d i n g t o the c r i t e r i a o f " i n " , " o n " , " b e h i n d " , " i n f r o n t o f " , "under", " b e s i d e - l e f t " , and " b e s i d e right".  One  s e r i e s o f c a r d s p r e s e n t e d a cup, each p i c t u r e showing the  spoon i n v a r i o u s r e l a t i o n s h i p s a c c o r d i n g t o t h e a f o r e m e n t i o n e d c a t e g o r i e s . The examiner was t o count and r e c o r d the number o f i n c o r r e c t r e s p o n s e s f o r each c a t e g o r y .  S i x , o r more, i n c o r r e c t r e s p o n s e s were c o n s i d e r e d f a i l u r e  u n l e s s a l l s i x i n c o r r e c t r e s p o n s e s were i n one c a t e g o r y .  This task  was  used f o r c h i l d r e n f i v e t o e i g h t y e a r s . The "house, t o w e r , and t r e e " t a s k v/as used w i t h c h i l d r e n n i n e t o eleven years.  T h r e e - d i m e n s i o n a l , m i n a t u r e forms o f a house, a tower and  77.  a tree, were placed on a board in a fixed position. Eight photographs, representing views from various angles, were presented to the child, who remained seated in a fixed spot relative to the house, tower, and tree arrangement. A doll was then moved to eight different positions around the board. With each placement the child was asked to select the picture which represented the view the doll was seeing. Four incorrect responses constituted failure. . "Classification of animals" was the fourth task designed. Three envelopes, labelled ducks, birds, and animals, contained pictures of each label category. The child was asked: (a) can the ducks be put in envelope labelled birds; (b) birds in one labelled animals; (c) ducks in one labelled animals; (d) birds in one labelled ducks; (e) animals in one labelled birds, and still keep the same label. The child was asked why, after he responded. Three or more incorrect responses were considered a failure. The task, labelled "Morse code", involved auditory visual translation and was, therefore, considered as part of both the visual and auditory batteries. That is, if a child failed this and other auditory tasks, he was placed in this group, while if he failed this and other visual tasks, his assignment was to the visual group. In this task, the child was presented with four cards on which were depicted various arrangements of dots and dashes. He was then presented with an auditory stimulus of dots and dashes that was represented on one of the visual stimuli. He was asked to select the correct visual representation of the auditory stimulus. Three different trials were administered. Failure was two or more incorrect responses.  APPENDIX E Selection and Training of Teenage Staff Members SELECTION While the program v/as being developed by the project consultant and the two graduate students, the organizers were recruiting applications for the fifteen staff positions from the local secondary schools. These applicants completed a form with the following information: Name Age Address Phone Previous work or relationship with children Special skills (music, art, drama, gym, swim, etc.) Reason for wanting to work with the program Person who referred the applicant Each prospective employee was then interviewed the two supervisors (graduate students) and asked what experience he had had with children, with what type of child he had worked, what role he had played, and had the experience been enjoyable. The nature of the program v/as described to the teenager who was then asked how he saw himself, with his particular skills, fitting into the program. A final question v/as asked concerning transportation as it was anticipated that this would present a problem. Four characteristics were felt to be important in staff members: (a) the ability to be directive, (b) willingness to take directions, (c) the ability to function independently and responsibly, (d) the manner in which they perceived children. Applicants verbal and written responses were assessed for these characteristics and each individual received a score of:  79. 0 = definitely not acceptable 1 = poor 2 = average 3 = good on each criterion.  Individuals were selected mainly on the basis of total  obtained score. The sex of the applicant v/as also a determining factor.  As the  prevalence of learning disabilities i s higher among boys than among girls (McCarthy and McCarthy, 1969), i t was anticipated that the program enrollment would reflect this fact. Since the' children were a l l of elementary school age (5-11 years) and there i s a tendency for the elementary teaching positions to be f i l l e d by women rather than men, i t was considered important to have as many male staff members as females. 27 were from teenage g i r l s .  Of the original 30 applications,  Final selection was postponed u n t i l 11 more  male applicants were recruited and interviewed.  The staff employed  consisted cf eight girls and seven boys. An applicant's previous experience was of particular importance when i t was necessary to make a choice between two applicants who were equally matched on other criteria. A teenager's special s k i l l s were not considered as a criterion for employment.  Since the program was designed to help children develop  a b i l i t i e s i n deficit areas, i t was not essential to have staff members who were highly proficient i n such areas as music and arts and crafts. In fact, i n some instances, i t was found that teenagers with minimal s k i l l s in particular areas were better able to simplify the task i n order to provide the child with a successful experience.  After f i n a l selection of staff  members, however, i t was found that a wide variety of special s k i l l s did exist among prospective employees.  80.  TRAINING A three day training course was designed for the teenagers by the program consultant and the supervisors. The first session began v/ith an introduction to learning disabilities. This topic was presented in relation to the designed program and to the children who had been selected. It was emphasized that the children, althoug they generally possessed average or above average intelligence had specific  deficits in one or more of the areas of audition, language, attention, gross motor coordination, fine motor coordination, or vision. Group discussion was initiated with the intent of investigating the staff's ability to integrate and apply the theoretical content. Realistic situations were presented to the teenagers (e.g., If you were working with a child who had difficulty following directions, what behaviour might you expect to see? What might you do about it?) for consideration. Their responses were directe by the consultant and the supervisors toward task modification and/or simplification according to the needs of the individual child. As each staff member was to keep daily anecdotal records on all the children with whom he/she worked, a lecture on the Observation and Recording of Behaviour was presented. Here the emphasis was placed on the difference between observation and judgement, data resulting from the former being an essential prerequisite to the formulation of hypotheses or judgements. Time was also spent describing the summer program and the roles of the various staff members with particular reference to the responsibilities  of the teenagers. One morning was devoted to familiarization with the task battery. Each staff member was assigned a particular task(s) and practiced administe ing this (these) to the rest of the group. The teenagers were well supervised  81.  to insure that specified administration procedures were followed and that they were aware of the importance of this for collecting usable information. The teenagers were then organized into three subgroups.  Each subgroup  consists of individuals who were to be responsible for one of two particular sets of a c t i v i t i e s (e.g., auditory and language, fine and gross motor, etc.) and either the consultant or one of the supervisors.  Discussion  centered around (a) the type of a c t i v i t i e s appropriate for the children i n the groups, (b) the type of problems the children would be most l i k e l y to encounter, (c) techniques for behaviour management. The t h i r d morning was spent f a m i l i a r i z i n g staff members with the children to whom they were assigned, and discussing professionalism and the confidentiality of information. At the f i n a l session, the s t a f f members were shown a video-tape of s i x children being informally tested.  They (the teenagers) were directed  to record behavioural observations that were to be discussed after the showing. Following i s a summary of the three day training session. Day 1  a.m. p.m.  The nature of learning d i s a b i l i t i e s (lecture) Variations i n functioning among children with learning d i s a b i l i t i e s (discussion) Techniques f o r observing and recording behaviour (lecture) Design of program and roles of staff members (lecture)  Day 2  a.m. p.m.  Familiarization with task battery (practice) Familiarization with particular group a c t i v i t i e s ( s m a l l group discussions)  Day 3  a.m.  Discussion of individual children and their problems. Professional ethics, Videotape and discussion of observations.  p.m.  Through the summer the staff members were supervised at a l l times.  82.  Each graduate student was present during one treatment period for each of the four groups of children per week. During this time, staff training was continued. Using the lecture "observation and recording of behaviour" as a foundation and their own daily anecdotal records as departure points, the teenagers were assisted in differentiating between recording of factual data and making judgemental comments. They were given immediate direction in task modification when they were observed insisting a child "do better" or "try harder" and in task development when they were observed using inappropriate activities. Behaviour management techniques were dealt with in a similar fashion. If staff members were observed being punitive or non-directive, assistance was given in the simplification of tasks and the use of specific, directive techniques. The teenagers were encouraged to ask for help as often as they felt it necessary. A weekly two-hour seminar was held at which time the staff could discuss the problems that had occurred and receive direction from the consultant and the supervisors.  APPENDIX F Parental Involvement Parents were informed, via a written announcement brought home by their children, that the program consultant was available on Wednesday afternoons. At this time, she would meet with parents who requested interviews to discuss their child's abilities and ways in which they (the parents) could help their child. All children were retested with the task battery during the final week of the program. Reports on a child's overall program behaviour, based on task battery performance and daily anecdotal recordings, were sent to parents on request. General results of the pilot project and recommendations for a future program were presented to the parents at a meeting of the Surrey chapter of the Association for Children with Learning Disabilities in February, 1972.  


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