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Educational Testing

General Introduction

Since 1977, the Kelter Center has been helping children and adults become self-directed learners through teaching them basic academic skills such as reading and spelling, reading fluency and comprehension, vocabulary expansion, writing skills and mathematics.
In the last 30 years, researchers have discovered a great deal about how the brain works and how that knowledge can be translated into educational programs.  We teach students “how to learn”.

Testing Services

If  you have chosen to home school your child, you need to know at what grade level they are performing and what you need to teach and re-teach them.
The goal of our educational testing is to discover how children learn; what they know, what they confuse and what they don’t know in the areas of literacy and mathematics. We also are able to evaluate how they are learning/processing information and what gets in their way of learning efficiently.  
Some of our students have diagnostic labels,; gifted learners, learning disabled students, students with attention deficit disorder or students who have just not yet learned the basics.
The evaluation outlines educational goals and programs to meet those goals.

The Kelter Center has worked with children for 30 years in the areas of “learning to read” and “reading to learn”.   When we work with families, parents often ask, “What can I do at home to enhance my child’s reading skills?”
Research in the early development of reading clearly shows two areas that parents can have an impact upon:

 

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Children learn vocabulary words from the ages 3 to 7 at astonishing rates if they are “talked with” regularly and read to.
Let’s explore this “talked with” idea.  Sitting around the dinner
table together parents can ask questions like:
“What was the tastiest food you ate today, string beans or mashed potatoes?  Why did you pick mash potatoes? Why did you not pick string beans?”
What was your favorite activity in school today? Reading circle or your music class? Why?
Describe what you did this morning at school.  What did you do first? Next? Next? Last?

Notice that these questions are framed in a very structured manner.  Each question gives two possible answers or a framework for the child to organize their thoughts.  Questions should be followed with a “why” component.
Most children’s books have very sophisticated vocabulary and ideas.  When reading a book to your son or daughter, it would be helpful to read it to yourself first.  Ask yourself,
            “What are the key ideas in this book?”
            “Who are the characters? What do they look like, act like, talk like?”
            “When is this taking place?”
            “Where?”
“What words do I want my son or daughter to learn from this book?”

Once you have answered these questions, you can create an informal introduction to your reading session that will prepare your child to better understand the book.
Here’s an example using the book, “Pink and Say” by Patricia Polacco.
“This book is about two teen-age boys who go to fight in the Civil War.  They are both terribly frightened by the fighting.  Say is injured and Pink helps him.  Let’s read this book to see how Pink does this.”

Then as you read, every page or two you can ask, “What did Pink do now to help Say?”
Patricia Polacco has used some very descriptive verbs in this book.  Before and/or  during the time you are reading with your child you can bring these words to life by doing some activities.  Three of these verbs are

All these actions describe how Pink and Say are moving, because Say is injured.  When one of these words comes up in the story you should create a “kid friendly” definition and have your child pantomime the action.

If you want to find age and grade appropriate books, two excellent resources are Amazon.com Reading Zoo and The Children’s Book World on Pico Boulevard in West Los Angeles.
If you want to learn  more about active,  interesting way for your child to learn to read and spell, contact us at the Kelter Center, 310-312-1056 or visit our website at, keltercenter.org

 

 

 




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