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Pittsburgh Region-PBIDA Conference

DYSLEXIA TODAY 2018:

Beyond Research - Knowledge to Practice
Saturday, April 14, 2018

7:30am-3:30pm

 DoubleTree by Hilton
Pittsburgh-Monroeville Convention Center
101 Mall Blvd., Monroeville, PA  15146

 

CLICK HERE TO REGISTER


Keynote Speaker: Timothy Odegard, Ph.D., CALP

Dr. Odegard, a cognitive psychologist and professor of psychology, holds the Katherine Davis Murfree Chair of Excellence in Dyslexic Studies at Middle Tennessee State University. His research focuses on memory and language. In particular his research in the area of reading strives to improve intervention efforts to meet the needs of individuals with dyslexia and specific reading disabilities. He has received research funding from the National Institutes of Health and the Department of Defense for his research and regularly publishes peer-reviewed research articles, most recently in Developmental Neuropsychology, and Psychiatry Research: Neuroimaging.
Understanding Developmental Dyslexia
Dr. Odegard’s presentation will provide an overview of developmental dyslexia and its relationship to specific learning disabilities that impact reading. He will also give an overview of reading development and variations in reading development including information about various language-based processing deficits commonly observed in individuals with dyslexia.

 

 

Morning Workshops:

AM 1 Using Various Sources of Information to Identify Characteristics of Dyslexia
         Timothy Odegard, Ph.D., CALP
Dr. Odegard will demonstrate use of a data collection tool to aid educators in collecting various sources of data to determine if a child presents with characteristics of dyslexia. Examples of sources of data include parent and teacher reports, curriculum embedded measures, curriculum-based measurements, and norm-referenced tests of reading skill.
Focus: Diagnosing Dyslexia
Target Audience: All
AM 2 Constructivist Approaches to Phonics and Vocabulary Instruction: Word Study that Works!   
          Timothy Rasinski, Ph.D.
Dr. Rasinski is a professor of literacy education at Kent State University. He has written over 200 articles and has authored, co-authored or edited over 50 books or curriculum programs on reading education. He is author of the best selling book on reading fluency entitled The Fluent Reader, published by Scholastic.

Word decoding or phonics, vocabulary, and spelling are essential and foundational competencies in learning to read. In this session Dr. Rasinski will share innovative, effective, and engaging methods for helping students to not only learn but also to take great delight in words and word study.
Focus: Reading Instruction and Intervention
Target Audience: Teachers, Tutors, Parents, Administrators

AM 3 Cultivating Coaching Mindsets as a Means of Improving Literacy Instruction
           Rita M. Bean, Ph.D.
Professor Emerita, School of Education, University of Pittsburgh. Dr. Bean has taught at the elementary level and served as reading supervisor, K-12. During her tenure at the University, she served as director of the Reading Center. Currently, Dr. Bean is serving as Co-Chair for the development of the 2017 Standards for Specialized Literacy Professionals. She was a lead writer of the PA Comprehensive Literacy Plan (2011) and a consultant on the evaluation team for the Striving Readers Discretionary Grant awarded to Pennsylvania.
 
This session will address how teachers, reading specialists, interventionists and administrators can serve as leaders to improve reading instruction. Through this interactive session, Dr. Bean will help attendees identify ways they can facilitate change in their school and learn strategies for working effectively with colleagues. In particular, attendees will learn tactics for leading group meetings, having difficult conversations and encouraging people to use research-based practices.

Focus: Coaching/Consulting with Colleagues
Target Audience: Teachers, Reading Specialists, Interventionists, Administrators
AM 4 Using Visual Based Instructional Systems for Classroom Planning and Intervention
          Eric Bieniek, Ph.D., BCBA-D, BSL
Dr. Bieniek is an assistant professor in the Department of Special Education at Slippery Rock University of Pennsylvania, a licensed behavior specialist in the state of Pennsylvania (LBS), a nationally certified psychologist (NCP) and a board certified behavior analyst (BCBA-D). Dr. Bieniek has a range of educational, clinical and supervisory experiences supporting the needs of learners with neurological, behavioral and emotional disorders in educational settings as well as supporting families of behaviorally involved children in due process disputes.
 
Students diagnosed as having a learning disability in the area of reading face a multitude of challenges in the typical school environment beyond academic achievement. This can include understanding classroom and school-wide rules and expectations. It can also include a decreased ability to navigate their classroom settings due to the volume of written, versus visual cues typically used in a classroom. Ideas and interventions will be presented that will explore adapting the environment as well as presentation of instructional materials to limit a reliance on understanding written language. Instead, the use of multi-modal resources to maximize the chances for student understanding of curricular and environmental expectations within the learning environment will be discussed.

Focus: Behavior Management
Target Audience: Teachers, Psychologists, Administrators
 
AM 5 When Emotional and Learning Needs are Intertwined: A child psychiatrist talks about attention, anxiety and                   mood in children with learning disabilities
          
Lisa Goldstein, MD
Dr. Goldstein is a board certified Child and Adolescent Psychiatrist in practice in suburban Philadelphia. She works extensively with students with learning differences including dyslexia as well as other complicated issues including post-concussion syndrome and chronic headache disorders. She also frequently provides independent psychiatric evaluations to schools or families throughout Pennsylvania and Delaware. She is the immediate past president of PBIDA.
The idea that emotional and learning needs are intertwined may seem obvious but presents complicated challenges to children, parents, and schools. This presentation will include information about diagnosis and medication and non-medication treatment of Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder, Anxiety Disorders and Depression in children and teens. Increasing awareness and combating stigma and isolation will also be addressed. There will be an opportunity to ask questions and learn how a practicing child psychiatrist talks about these issues with children.
Focus: Anxiety, Attention and Learning Disabilities
Target Audience: All

 AM 6 Developing Number Sense in Struggling Math Students – It’s NOT Just for Kindergarten
           Nancy Dyson, Ph.D.
Dr. Dyson, a researcher at the University of Delaware, has been in mathematics education for more than 40 years as both teacher and as founder and director of a parent cooperative school. Her research and coordination for a National Institute of Child Health and Human Development (NICHD) funded intervention project has focused on number sense and fraction sense for students who struggle with mathematics. Dr. Dyson is the co-author of Number Sense Interventions, a number sense intervention program for students in kindergarten, and a contributor to Number Sense Screener.
 
Without foundational number sense, students of all ages continue to struggle in mathematics. This session will begin by briefly reviewing the importance of number sense for future success in mathematics and how a number sense screener can be used to identify students at risk for difficulties in mathematics. Next, the findings of a four-year study on improving number sense in young children will be reported as well as the resulting research based number sense intervention which can be adapted for students of all ages. A better understanding of number sense and interventions for students at risk for mathematics difficulties will help teachers and parents provide the much-needed support for students who struggle with basic number sense concepts. This knowledge, together with knowledge of appropriate screeners, will enable educational psychologists to identify children at risk for mathematics difficulties and make informed recommendations for appropriate interventions.

Focus: Math
Target Audience: Teachers, Parents

AM 7 Supporting Students with “G Suite for Education” in the Classroom
          Samantha Shinsky M.S. Ed.
Ms. Shinsky is the Coordinator of Information and Innovation at Provident Charter School. At Provident, Samantha works with teachers and students to effectively integrate technology into the classroom. She is a certified teacher and instructional technology specialist, an Apple Teacher with Swift Playground endorsements and a Google Certified Educator (level 2). In addition to working at PCS, Samantha is an instructor at the Carnegie Science Center where she teaches robotics and a Community Education Adjunct at CCAC where she teaches computer-based courses.
 
Google Apps for Education and Chrome Extensions provide infinite possibilities for supporting students in the educational setting. This breakout session will provide an overview on using the free applications included within Google’s G Suite for Education such as Google Classroom, Drive, Forms, Sheets, Docs, Slides, and more. The session will also introduce Chrome Extensions, which can be particularly useful in assisting students with language based learning differences.

Focus: Technology in the Classroom
Target Audience: Teachers
AM 8 Orton-Gillingham Basics
          Maria M. Paluselli, M.S. Ed
Ms. Paluselli is Chief Learning Officer at Provident Charter School, where she was involved with the charter application from its early development. She has worked in special education for over 20 years as a teacher, education consultant, and Certified Orton-Gillingham Trainer. She was the first director of the Children’s Dyslexia Center of Pittsburgh where she trained and supervised teachers and tutors at the initial and advanced levels. She is the past chair of the Pittsburgh Region of PBIDA.
 
This session is intended for individuals who would like a basic understanding of the principles of the Orton-Gillingham Approach. Session participants will be provided with a brief overview of how language instruction can progress using multisensory strategies. Both theoretical principles and instructional strategies will be discussed, as well as how these strategies differ from a traditional approach to teaching reading and spelling, along with rationale for this approach as optimal for the learner with dyslexia.
Focus: Multisensory Instruction, Principles of Orton-Gillingham Instruction and Programs
Target Audience: Parents, Teachers, Administrators

Afternoon Workshops:

PM 9 What is Executive Functioning?
          Erika Buchanan. Ph.D.
Dr. Buchanan is a Licensed Psychologist, PA Certified School Psychologist, and Nationally Certified School Psychologist. In her current position at the Center for Pediatric Neuropsychology, Dr. Buchanan conducts neuropsychological evaluations and provides outpatient therapy services, executive functioning skills training, and educational consulting services.

This presentation will focus on clearly defining the various areas of executive functioning including aspects of cognitive, behavioral, and emotional regulation. Participants will be guided in how to “break down” a given situation in terms of the impact executive functioning deficits may have. Strategies to address executive functioning deficits will also be presented.

Focus: Executive Functioning
Target Audience: Psychologists, Teachers, Parents
PM 10 Collaborative Relationship Training (CRT) 
            Sarah Lapinski and Rachel Swartz
Ms. Lapinski is a Ph.D. student in special education at the University of Pittsburgh, under Dr. Anastasia Kokina. Her research focus is on family-professional partnerships as well as transition to adulthood. She has dedicated the past 15 years to helping children with autism and their families. She has worked in early intervention through college transition, and as a special education teacher and supervisor.

Ms. Swartz is a special educator and BCBA working with adolescents and adults with autism and developmental disabilities. She is a Ph.D. student at the University of Pittsburgh under Dr. Rachel Robertson. Her research interests include issues of aging with disabilities, the service provision and behavior analytic practices for adolescents and adults with disabilities, and strategies towards building effective partnerships between families and professionals.
Presenters will discuss common barriers to family-professional partnerships, ongoing research, and outline Collaborative Relationship Training (CRT). CRT is a model developed to provide educators with strategies to increase positive family-professional partnerships.
Focus: Parent-Teacher relationships
Target Audience: Teachers, Parents
PM 11 Educational Rights for Students with Dyslexia
          Jeff Ruder, J.D.
Jeff Ruder is the founder and principal of Ruder Law. Since 2006, Jeff has focused his
practice on advocating for the rights of disabled children in public schools. He is also a
frequent speaker to professional and parent groups regarding the rights of students with
disabilities. Jeff also serves as an Allegheny County Solicitor, handling matters involving child abuse and neglect.

Mr. Ruder’s presentation will discuss the difference between the Individuals with Disabilities Education Act and Section 504 eligibility for students with dyslexia, knowing the difference between accommodations and specially designed instruction, understanding the Individualized Education Plan (IEP) process and determining instructional methodology, ensuring a program is implemented with fidelity, determining how much progress to expect and how to measure it, and resolving IEP and reading program problems.
Focus: Education Law
Target Audience: Parents, Administrators
PM 12 The ABCs of CAPD: The Connection between Central Auditory Processing Deficits and Dyslexia
           Susan Snyder, Au.D CCC-A
Director, Clinical Auditory Education, Department of Speech and Language Pathology, Duquesne University. Dr. Snyder has been a clinical audiologist for 27 years and has worked in Ear, Nose and Throat clinics, children's rehab facilities, and elementary schools. She has been a clinical instructor of Audiology for the University of Pittsburgh, University of Arizona and is now clinical assistant professor at Duquesne University. She provides evaluations and therapy for children and adults with central auditory processing disorders and auditory training/aural rehabilitation for hearing impaired and cochlear implant children and adults.

Individuals can present with Central Auditory Processing Disorders (CAPD), dyslexia or both. If CAPD is suspected, it is important to diagnose and treat because an intact and well-functioning auditory system is essential for success in school and reading. New treatment options can help reverse the effects of CAPD, which in turn helps improve progress with reading therapy and instruction. Current research will be presented on the connection between CAPD and dyslexia, as well as discussion on the similarities, differences and what signs to look for if CAPD is suspected, and when to request testing by an audiologist. Discussion on the current treatment options, specialized instruction and accommodations in the classroom will also be presented.
Focus: Auditory Processing
Target Audience: Psychologists, Parents, Teachers
PM 13 BYOD (Bring Your Own Device): Assistive Tech Apps for Android & iOS Devices
           Samantha Shinsky M.S. Ed.
Ms. Shinsky is the Coordinator of Information and Innovation at Provident Charter School. At Provident, Samantha works with teachers and students to effectively integrate technology into the classroom. She is a certified teacher and instructional technology specialist, an Apple Teacher with Swift Playground endorsements and a Google Certified Educator (level 2). In addition to working at PCS, Samantha is an instructor at the Carnegie Science Center where she teaches robotics and a Community Education Adjunct at CCAC where she teaches computer-based courses.

This session will introduce a variety of valuable applications that can assist struggling readers with accessing both printed and digital text. Bring your own android or iOS device to participate in a real-time exploration of optical character recognition, text-to-speech, and speech-to-text software.
Focus: Useful Apps and Assistive Technology
Target Audience: Parents, Teachers, Tutors, Administrators
PM 14 Developing Fraction Sense in Struggling Math Students of All Ages
           Nancy Dyson, Ph.D.
Dr. Dyson, a researcher at the University of Delaware, has been in mathematics education for more than 40 years as both teacher and as founder and director of a parent cooperative school. Her research and coordination for a National Institute of Child Health and Human Development (NICHD) funded intervention project has focused on number sense and fraction sense for students who struggle with mathematics. Dr. Dyson is the co-author of Number Sense Interventions, a number sense intervention program for students in kindergarten, and a contributor to Number Sense Screener.
Fraction concepts can be difficult for all learners but especially for students who struggle with math. This is especially problematic as research shows that fraction knowledge is a predictor of future success in algebra. This session will report the findings of a four-year longitudinal study on the development of fraction knowledge in children from 3rd to 6th grade. Roadblocks to learning fractions will be discussed as well as a “fraction sense” intervention being developed which has been shown to help students understand fraction magnitude and make sense of fraction arithmetic procedures.
Focus: Math/Fractions
Target Audience: Teachers, Parents
PM 15 Effective Teaching of Reading Fluency – The Neglected Component of the Reading Curriculum
           Timothy Rasinski, Ph.D.
Dr. Rasinski is a professor of literacy education at Kent State University. He has written over 200 articles and has authored, co-authored or edited over 50 books or curriculum programs on reading education. He is author of the best selling book on reading fluency entitled The Fluent Reader, published by Scholastic.

Fluency in reading has been found to be a critical element of any successful reading program (National Reading Panel). Despite its importance many students fail to achieve sufficiently in this area and many teachers do not feel completely competent in their knowledge and teaching of this reading component. In this workshop, Dr. Rasinski will provide theoretical and research background and definition to fluency. He will share approaches to assessing and monitoring progress in this key aspects of reading. Finally, he will share effective and engaging strategies for teaching this all-important reading component that will move students toward better comprehension and greater proficiency in reading.
Focus: Fluency
Target Audience: Teachers, Interventionists, Tutors, Parents