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When Students Struggle

Livia McCoy
Livia McCoy spent many years teaching upper school science. She currently serves as Dean of Student Support at The Steward School in Richmond, VA. Livia sees each student as an individual with great potential to learn, and feels her job is to help every student figure out how to be successful in school. Livia says, “I blog about the many smart students who struggle in school because they think differently or have attention issues. I share what I have learned helping these students, their parents and teachers to see how they can experience success in school.” Livia welcomes comments on her blog at SchoolFamily.com.


In Math (and In Life), Which is More Important—the Process or the Outcome?

Jul 10, 2012 - Posted by Livia McCoy in Special Education, Math, Livia McCoy, Homework, Division

I was reading an article about the state of special education in American schools. There was a statement in the article that essentially said that schools “value the process over the outcome.” I began to wonder wh... Read more
Will Dyslexic Children Go Undiagnosed After DSM-5?

Jul 03, 2012 - Posted by Livia McCoy in Reading, Livia McCoy, Learning Disabilities

The DSM (Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders) is used by doctors who diagnose learning differences like dyslexia, a developmental reading disorder. In the spring of 2013, the 5th edition of the DSM will be p... Read more
Birdwatching Can Be Fun and Easy for Kids Struggling With Reading

Jun 27, 2012 - Posted by Livia McCoy in Middle School, Livia McCoy, Kids Reading, Kids Learning

Does your middle school child love birds, but then he gets frustrated when trying to identify them? Many children do. Unfortunately, field guides that help identify birds can be really hard to use, especially for children who... Read more
Kids With Learning Disabilities Are Actually Quite Smart

Jun 21, 2012 - Posted by Livia McCoy in Struggling Students, Livia McCoy, Learning Disabilities, Dyslexia

Students who are labeled LD (learning disabled) struggle in school and feel like they are not smart. In fact, a lot of people believe this to be true. But, if you ask many highly successful adults about their school experienc... Read more
Student Learning Styles: What Is Episodic Memory?

Jun 12, 2012 - Posted by Livia McCoy in Memory, Livia McCoy

How do we make memories? There are many explanations for how memory works. Memory, however, is much more complicated than any one theory can explain. I have blogged before about memory strategies as well as several times abou... Read more
Student Absences: They Hurt Learning More Than You Might Think

Jun 05, 2012 - Posted by Livia McCoy in Livia McCoy, Kids Learning, Homework

It seems like missing one day of school would not be that big of a deal. Some parents feel free to keep their children out of school fairly often (even when they are not sick). It is appropriate to keep your child home if th... Read more
What Does Your Child’s “Grade Equivalent Score” Really Mean?

May 30, 2012 - Posted by Livia McCoy in Test Scores, Livia McCoy

In another blog post, I wrote about what percentiles mean on standardized tests. Another score you are likely to see is the grade equivalent (GE) score. They will look something like this: “5.3” or “7.9.&rdq... Read more
What Do Standardized Test Scores, and Percentiles, Mean?

May 22, 2012 - Posted by Livia McCoy in Middle School, Livia McCoy, Learning Disabilities, Elementary School

Often when schools do standardized testing, they report the scores in percentiles. Percentiles are not the same thing as percentages (percents), even though they sound like they should be. Percentages are what most teachers u... Read more
For LD Students, Concentrate On One Big Thing at a Time

May 15, 2012 - Posted by Livia McCoy in Middle School, Livia McCoy, Learning Disabilities

When children struggle in school, they are often having difficulty with many things. They may have poor ability to focus their attention, low reading and spelling skills, working memory issues, or problems with executive func... Read more
Summer Plans for Struggling Students

May 09, 2012 - Posted by Livia McCoy in Vacation Homework, SchoolFamily.com, Middle School, Livia McCoy, Learning Disabilities

Students who struggle in school often have gifts in areas that do not relate to academics. For example, they may be amazing artists, musicians, athletes, actors or dancers. When thinking about summer plans for these students,... Read more