Seems like ages ago that I first blogged about Wendy’s advocacy efforts on behalf of vision therapy in March, and about her book when it was released in July. Wendy is getting some well-deserved coverage in her area of central New Jersey, and we hope that her book takes off like wildfire! Here is the link to article in the Education section of mycentraljersey.com, but in case you have trouble accessing it we’re reproduced it here in in its entirety.
- The book, while it is about a rather complex subject, is written in clear language for parents, teachers, guidance counselors, school administrators, pediatricians, psychologists and child study team personnel.
- Rosen, a teacher and educational consultant, said she first learned about this subject from a psychologist.
- Rosen said this diagnosis was life-changing for her daughter.
- Vision-related learning problems can affect every child, says Highland Park resident Wendy Rosen, from those outwardly struggling the most to those who may be at the top of the class.
AT A GLANCE
Book: “The Hidden Link Between Vision and Learning: Why Millions of Learning Disabled Children Are Misdiagnosed”
Author: Wendy Rosen
Publisher: Rowman & Littlefield
Published: July, 2016
The book may be purchased online directly from the publisher, Barnes & Noble, and Amazon. It is also in select Barnes & Noble stores and independent bookstores.
Vision-related learning problems can affect every child, says Highland Park resident Wendy Rosen, from those outwardly struggling the most to those who may be at the top of the class.In her recently published book, “The Hidden Link Between Vision and Learning: Why Millions of Learning Disabled Children Are Misdiagnosed” (Rowman & Littlefield, July 2016), Rosen looks at the impact those vision problems can have on children’s education.
“Depending on the degree and number of deficits, as well as a child’s inner resources and surrounding sources of support, some kids may be able to cope better than others,” she said. “ But the child who is getting all A’s and seems to be sailing along, who has a hidden visual disorder, may actually be working much harder than he or she would normally need to.”
The book, while it is about a rather complex subject, is written in clear language for parents, teachers, guidance counselors, school administrators, pediatricians, psychologists and child study team personnel – essentially everyone who works with children, Rosen said.
“Vision-related learning problems are not recognized as a disability in need of attention because a staggering portion of our population does not know that they exist,” she said. “This book puts these little-known yet correctable vision problems in the spotlight, making this life-changing knowledge available to everyone. It will breathe new life into the education of our children.”
Rosen, a teacher and educational consultant, said she first learned about this subject from a psychologist.
“We were wisely pointed in the right direction when we sought her second opinion on our daughter’s child study team evaluation,” Rosen recalled. “After a reviewing the report which included a vague diagnosis that resulted in a non-descript classification, she picked up on a possible vision correlation and referred us to a behavioral optometrist to have Sara evaluated. Behavioral optometrists, also called developmental optometrists, have completed extensive post-doctoral education and training that qualify these specialists to assess, diagnose, and treat visual and perceptual problems.”
This diagnosis was life-changing for her daughter.
”Though Sara had 20/20 eyesight, she was diagnosed with several vision disorders,” Rosen said. “After nine months of vision therapy, she was fully rehabilitated and later declassified. Sara went on to become a top honors student, a proud member of the National Honor Society, and is now a thriving college student.”
From the vantage points of a teacher and a parent, Rosen said this diagnosis was equally compelling.
“As a teacher, this changed my life, too. I couldn’t believe I had never heard of vision-related learning problems. When I began to explore this topic further, and learned that these problems affect one in four children, I immersed myself in independent research, consulted with leading practitioners in this field from all over the country, and began doing outreach education about this subject by going into schools and facilitating professional development workshops,” she said. “The book is the culmination of a decade of my research, teaching and consulting on this critical topic.”
Rosen said she wrote the book to bring awareness to a subject that directly impacts learning and behavior, and even the achievement gap, in ways many people have never heard of.
“While knowledge about these types of vision problems is scant, getting it into the minds and hearts of everyone who touches a child’s life yields the potential to transform individual lives, whole communities, and even the field of education,” Rosen said. “I explain this in depth in the book.”
Here are some key findings of Rosen’s research presented in “The Hidden Link Between Vision and Learning: Why Millions of Learning Disabled Children Are Misdiagnosed”:
- One in four school-age children struggle with a hidden vision disorder that impacts learning and behavior.
- A child can have 20/20 vision and still have a vision problem, which can be at the core of a learning disability.
- The typical vision screening only identifies 5 percent of vision problems in children.
- 80 percent of the neurological pathways in the brain connect with the visual system. We get an astounding amount of information about the world through our vision.
- Vision-related learning problems are present in three-quarters of the juvenile delinquent population, prisoners, and illiterate adults. When these problems go unrecognized and untreated, lives spiral downward. (A whole chapter is devoted to this in the book.)