Meet Steve, Rik, Randolph, and Albert — four children with learning disabilities and concomitant emotional problems — and their tutors, dedicated educational therapists who work with them in the very special environment of the Learning Lab. This volume, using both the tutors’ logs and examples of the children’s work, details their interaction, revealing the effectiveness of the clinical teaching process in helping children not only overcome learning difficulties but also learn to cope with their problems.
The book demonstrates how each child’s unique strengths and needs are recognized in the Learning Lab. Physicians, special educators, language therapists, psychologists, and counselors work as an interdisciplinary team both to help the child and his or her family and to support the primary educational therapist dealing with the child on a one-to-one basis. Together they search for the “island of health” in each child and family and then seek to integrate all aspects of the child’s environment — social, familial, cognitive, and emotional — to maximize adaptation and learning.
As illustrated in this volume, each child referred to the Learning Lab by school personnel or psychologists or physicians is carefully evaluated and matched with a tutor. The tutor, with the supervision of an experienced educational therapist and the support of the entire Learning Lab team, meets frequently with the child to develop his or her strengths and overcome weaknesses. In the case studies, the remarkable growth and increasing selfesteem of the children in this setting are evident.
Since evaluating the needs of learning-disabled children and compensating for those needs are complicated processes, the four detailed case studies provide an especially useful learning opportunity for students, teachers, and clinicians. The day-to-day child-therapist interaction reveals the importance of matching learning styles, maintaining flexibility, and tailoring the treatment/learning program to each child’s needs.