The Story of Troy
While reading and writing may continue to be a struggle, instruction focused on specific learning needs will ensure that personal goals are met and their full potential is reached.
On a breezy June afternoon, Troy quickly worked his way up the complicated rock climbing wall. At the top of the wall, barely winded by the ascent, Troy rang a bell signaling his victory. He rappelled down wearing a great big grin. Troy was clearly in his element.
Some things do not come as easily as rock climbing for Troy. Troy was a 4th grader who found rock climbing a breeze but learning to read very difficult. Troy learns differently, challenged by dyslexia and attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD). Troy’s learning issues were not obvious from his early years. He was a bright, happy child who learned to speak at an early age and spent hours building elaborate objects with his toys. Once Troy entered 1st grade, however, his parents and teachers noticed that he was not keeping up with the other students in reading and writing, and his self-confidence was beginning to suffer.
Troy’s parents were puzzled and worried about their son's difficulty in school. In second grade, they brought him to the Stern Center for a learning evaluation. Once Troy’s learning differences were diagnosed, his parents and teachers understood why learning was so difficult for him. Then, they got to work getting Troy what he needed to become a reader and writer. This started with instruction at the Stern Center and collaboration with Troy’s teachers at school.
Troy’s Stern Center instructor remembers that Troy was hesitant at first to participate in instruction and would prefer to stay in the waiting room. After only a few sessions, Juliet noticed Troy begin to blossom: “In a matter of weeks, Troy went from being quiet and shy to really being excited and enthusiastic about coming to the Stern Center.”
Troy perfectly summed up his experience learning to read: “ I didn't know how good it was going to be. I wanted to avoid reading... the words all look jumbled. I felt like I wasn't smart. Reading is still hard for me but I can read books and do more than I used to. One of the things that the Stern Center has taught me is that I am very smart. Now, I realize that I learn differently from other kids.”
While reading and writing may never be a breeze for Troy, continued instruction focused on his specific learning needs will ensure that he can reach his full potential not only in the rock gym, but also in school.