All about Learning and how we learn

Executive Functions

    Executive Functioning in the News

      Executive Function: Skills for Life and Learning

      At DeMarle INC, we see many children and individuals who struggle with Executive Functions. It is very important that these skills are evaluated for, or screened for, as part of a comprehensive evaluation. We do that. For more information call our office - 585-730-8888
      This 5-minute video provides an overview of Building the Brain's "Air Traffic Control" System: How Early Experiences Shape the Development of Executive Function, the joint Working Paper from the National Scientific Council on the Developing Child and the National Forum on Early Childhood Policy and Programs
      Click this link to go learn more about executive funtion
      Click this link to find activities for developing executive function skills:

      Dr. Adele Diamond interview on On Being

      The Science of Attention - What Adele Diamond is learning about the brain challenges basic assumptions in modern education. Her work is scientifically illustrating the educational power of things like play, sports, music, memorization, and reflection. What nourishes the human spirit, the whole person, it turns out, also hones our minds.
      Click this link to go to On Being


    Math in the News

      NY Times: Strategies for teaching math

      This NY Times article (12/21/2009) explores the latest neuroscience research on how the brain learns math and discusses new math programs that have been designed to use the information from this research to bolster the math learning of preschoolers and students in Kindergarten. The article focuses on a the Building Blocks program which is being used in the Buffalo City Schools.
      Click this link to read the article

    Books for Teaching Math

      Times Tables the Fun Way

      Most children grasp math facts easily. Some children with Specific Learning Disabilities, however, struggle significantly to learn and master math facts of all kinds. Some of these children benefit from being taught facts in a more multisensory manner. This book Times Table the Fun Way teaches the multiplication facts through pictures, stories and rhymes. For some children with specific Learning Disabilities the use of these techniques can greatly help them master these facts.

    Math Videos

      Teaching Math to Boys

    Math Websites


      APlusMath is a very useful math website that can help children from Elementary through Middle School with math. The site contains printable homework sheets, as well as online flash cards. Click this link to go to the site.

      Khan Academy

      The Khan Academy provides over 1000 instructional Youtube video's on a variety of topics. The video's are straightforward and informative. The do not replace a classroom teacher, but are helpful for children working on homework of parents trying to figure out what their child's homework is about. Topics include Calculus | Precalculus | Trigonometry | Algebra | Finance | Pre-algebra | Arithmetic | Geometry | Physics | SAT Preparation | Probability | Linear Algebra | Differential Equations | Credit Crisis | Banking and Money | Paulson Bailout | California Standards Test: Algebra II | California Standards Test: Algebra I | California Standards Test: Geometry | Venture Capital and Capital Markets | Statistics | Geithner Plan | Current Economics | Brain Teasers | Valuation and Investing | Chemistry | Biology | CAHSEE Example Problems. Click this link to go to the site

      This site provides help in a number of mathematics-related subjects, including basic grade-school math, calculus, algebra, geometry, trigonometry, and statistics. Practice exercises are automatically graded—and this free site also features a glossary, calculators, homework tips, math games, and lesson plans for teachers.
      Click this link to go to the site.

    Tools for Teaching Math

      Addition and Subtraction Board

      This simple device lays out the addition and subtraction facts visually. It is a great visual and tactile tool for teaching these concepts.

      Multiplication Board

      Many children who have a hard time mastering their math facts, benefit from a visual approach. The use of a multiplication keypad can help make the multiplication table visual. This simple device lays out the multiplication facts visually. To make it most effective as a learning tool, it should be used with a right angled cut out. The child moves the cut out to the desired fact. This obscures all the items not included. The result for example of 4 x 5 is a rectangle 4 down and 5 across that contains 20 squares.


    How does reading work

    A series of slides from the NIH explaining the steps needed in learning to read.
    Click this link to read the article.

    Reading and the Common Core: Part 1

    Part 1 in an NPR series on Reading and the Common Core.
    Click this link to read the article.

    Reading and the Common Core: Part 2

    Part 2 in an NPR series on Reading and the Common Core.
    Click this link to read the article.

    Reading and the Common Core: Part 3

    Part 3 in an NPR series on Reading and the Common Core.
    Click this link to read the article.

    Reading and the Common Core: Part 4

    Part 4 in an NPR series on Reading and the Common Core.
    Click this link to read the article.

    Reading Research

      WWC: Success for all

      What Works Clearning House finds that "SFA® had positive effects on alphabetics, potentially positive effects on reading fluency, and mixed effects on comprehension and general reading achievement for students in grades K–4."
      Click this link to read the article.

      WWC findings on Repeated Reading

      The What Works Clearing House reviewed two studies of Repeated Reading and found it to have potentially positive effects on reading comprehension and no discernible effects on alphabetics, reading fluency, or general reading achievement for students with learning disabilities.
      Click this link to read the article.

    Reading Resources

        Reading Fluency Chart

        In 2017, Hasbrouck and Tindal published an Update of Oral Reading Fluency (ORF) Norms, compiled from three widely-used and commercially available ORF assessments (DIBELS, DIBELS Next, and easy CBM), and representing a far larger number of scores than the previous assessments.
        Click this link to go to the site
        Click this link to read the report.

        Get Ready to Read

        Get Ready to Read! is a service of National Center for Learning Disabilities. Get Ready to Read! is designed to support educators, parents, and young children in the development of early literacy skills in the years before kindergarten. Intended for use with all children, the resources and information provided on this site promote skill-building, communication between adults, and ways to address concerns.
        Click this link to go to the site

        Good Reads is available both as a webpage, and as an app. It is a great way to keep track of what books you or your child has read, and to help make connections between those books. It is also a great way to share book recommendations with friends, or classmates.
        Click this link to go to

        What Works Clearinghouse

        US Department of Education What Works Clearinghouse provides scientifically based reviews on a number of educationally related materials. Clicking this link leads to a review of specialized reading programs designed for teaching students with learning disabilities. Programs reviewed so far include Alphabetic Phonics Intervention, Barton Reading & Spelling System®, Dyslexia Training Program, Wilson Foundations®, Herman Method™, Project Read®, Unbranded Orton-Gillingham-based Interventions, Wilson Reading System®, Lindamood Phoneme Sequencing® (LiPS®, and Voyager Reading Programs.


        Project Gutenberg

        As every parent and student knows, books that are required reading are not always available, or if they are, students may misplace their copy before they finish the assignment. Project Gutenberg to the rescue. This site enables you to download more than 30,000 free electronic books to read on your computer, iPhone, Kindle, Sony Reader, or other portable device in a variety of file formats. You can search by title and author or browse their collection of classic works, many of which are available in audio editions as well.

        Understanding reading levels and finding resources

        Many schools due to No Child Left Behind (NCLB) are providing more information on student's
        reading progress. This is good news. Often, however, this information is presented in a way that
        many parents are unfamiliar.  Many districts are reporting DRA levels for children in reading. 
        DRA stands for developmental reading assessment. But it can be difficult to know what DRA level your child should be at. A nice online resource that can be used to find the answer to this question is at This company sells books and other educational materials. To find a chart listing the grade level that corresponds to a DRA levels as well as other commonly reported scores click this Link

        Click this link to see a reading correlation chart giving grade levels for a number of different reading programs.
        Click this link to download a pdf file of the reading correlation chart.

    Reading Terminology

    Tools for Teaching Reading

      Timed Repeated Reading

      Timed Repeated Readings of familiar text can increase your students' reading rate and accuracy.
      Click this link read about this intervention

      Webinar: The Who, What, When and Why of Reading Instruction

      In this very informative webinar, Educational Therapist Diana Kennedy outlines the theories behind dyslexia and provides an overview of very helpful strategies and programs to help parents, teachers, and individuals with Dyslexia.
      In this free, one-hour webinar for parents and teachers of children with dyslexia, Educational Therapist Diana Kennedy shares insights into the areas of reading that can break down for children. She also covers warning signs and red flags to look for, assessments that reveal what is happening with a given child, and the major reading programs that address each type of breakdown.
      Click this link to download the slides from the presentation
      Click this link to watch the video of the webinar

      Reading to the Dog

      Reading with the Dogs can help students improve their reading. A nice blog post and on the research behind having kids read to dogs.
      click this link to go to the site

      Teaching the Silent-e-

      PBS and the Electric Company bring you a series of videos on how to teach the silent-e- sound.
      click this link to go to the site

      Teaching Reading Comprehension through Concept Maps

      "A concept map is a visual organizer that can enrich students' understanding of a new concept. Using a graphic organizer, students think about the concept in several ways. Most concept map organizers engage students in answering questions such as, "What is it? What is it like? What are some examples?" Concept maps deepen understanding and comprehension."
      Click this link to read the article.

Working Memory

Working Memory is one of the key elements to learning and to living. Without working memory we would not be able to learn. When you look at a phone number and then hold that number in your head as you punch it into your phone a few seconds later you are using working memory."

Additional Resources

© Copyright, all rights reserved Daniel J. DeMarle, Ph.D. 2014