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Center for Alternative Learning
6 East Eagle Road
Havertown, PA 19083
Serving Those Who Learn Differently
Screening of Information Processing
After months of work, the Spanish translation of the C-SIP (Cooper
Screening of Information Processing) is complete.
Dr. Cooper has sent the new short form of the screening to the U.S.
Department of Education that plans to field test the Spanish version in a number
of states. The C-SIP is one of four
screening instruments that will be tested on Spanish speaking adults to
determine the effectiveness of each of the screenings in determining who should
be referred for formal testing to diagnose a learning disability.
In the process of preparing the C-SIP for this study, Dr. Cooper has made
some minor changes in content and major changes in format.
In response to requests for a shortened instrument, one that can be
administered in 10 or 15 minutes, he has redesigned the C-SIP so that the short
version of the screening is incorporated into the regular Cooper Screening.
This provides practitioners with the option of completing the short
version at an initial meeting with a person and administrating the rest of the
screening at a later time. The
other option that practitioners may employ is to use the short version for those
sections that do not appear to be problematic for the individual being screened.
For example, a teacher might use the short form of the reading list if
the person’s primary problem is math. The
short form of the progressive reading list contains 50 words while the long
version contains 150 words.
The short version of the screening differs from the long version in that
a numeric score is calculated to determine if the person is likely to have a
learning disability. The long
version continues to rely on a teacher’s or clinician’s expertise, rather
than a numeric score, to make that determination.
The Cooper Screening is a favorite screening of many teachers and
learning specialists because it provides information about how the person
processes information and samples the student’s basic academic skills.
This information is very useful in developing an instructional
prescription for individuals with learning differences not just for those who
have a significant learning disability.
We have included a copy of the C-SIP with this newsletter for your
review. We would appreciate any
comments you might have about the instrument, especially if you have used it in
Single copies of both the English and Spanish version of the C-SIP are
available free of charge from Learning disAbilities Resources.
Copying the C-SIP is permitted; however, since the new edition is 16
pages and printed in two colors, many find it cheaper to purchase multiple
copies from Learning disAbilities Resources.
Copies of the C-SIP, in English or Spanish, are available for .0.50 per
copy. For more information about
the C-SIP instrument or to obtain single or multiple copies, contact our office
Tic Tac Toe Math
Regular readers of this newsletter have frequently heard about Tic Tac
Toe Math developed by Dr. Cooper in 1986. From
the beginning Tic Tac Toe Math as met with both hot and cold reception from both
teachers and students. Some
students find Tic Tac Toe Math to be their answer to years of frustration with
math and others find it confusing and useless.
Comments from some teachers are glowing and these teachers report that
Tic Tac Toe Math has not just helped students with math but also helped them
change their self-perception from a slow learner to a capable, although
different, learner. Other teachers
find Tic Tac Toe Math confusing and useless.
These extremes in opinions about this very alternative instructional
technique suggests that something significant underlies the different ways that
individuals learn the basic functions of multiplication and division.
Here at the Center for Alternative Learning, ground zero for the methods
creation and continued development, we want to know more about the use of Tic
Tac Toe Math. We have heard from
teachers that they know how to teach the Single Digit Grids but are not
proficient themselves with Double and Multi-digit Grids.
Many teachers are not even aware that, in the past couple of years, Dr.
Cooper has developed Tic Tac Toe Math techniques for teaching the concepts and
operations of fractions and percentages or that Advanced Tic Tac Toe Math - the
Cube uses 30 positions rather than the basic 9.
If you of anyone you know is either using Tic Tac Toe Math or has tried
it and rejected it (teachers or students), we want to hear from you and them.
Please contact us by e-mail (firstname.lastname@example.org) and let us know how and
when we can contact you. We will
get back to you to conduct a short survey about your experience with Tic Tac Toe
Also, as reported in the last edition of this newsletter, we are now
issuing certification for teachers who want the recognition that they know and
use the method.
Pennsylvania’s teachers must earn six college credits or attend 180
hours of staff development over the next five years to maintain their teaching
certificate active. Dr. Cooper has
teamed up with Harcum College to become an approved provider of Act 48 training. He and faculty members of the college are available to
contract with school districts and other education organizations to provide
staff development on learning differences and a number of other topics.
Another service will be provided to teachers who are currently not
working in a school district that is providing Act 48 activities.
Examples of individuals who use this service would include teachers who
are taking time off to raise children, teachers working as substitutes for
different districts and teachers working in early childhood programs.
Although this program is still in its initial planning stage, we
anticipate that teachers who are not working for a particular school district
would use this program to make a staff development plan and keep track of their
staff development hours.
Additional details will be available in up-coming newsletters and will
also be posted on our website: www.learningdifferences.com.
If you would like to receive periodic updates about this program and the
training which will be offered, contact Dr. Cooper by e-mail at email@example.com.
by Dr. Richard Cooper
Many readers like to know where Dr. Cooper will be presenting and many
like to know where he has been recently. Since
it has been a while since the last newsletter was published we have included a
synopsis of his activities that were not mentioned in the last newsletter and a
listing of up-coming presentations.
Disabilities in the Workplace has been a popular topic this summer and fall.
Dr. Cooper conducted this training at the PA Correction’s Education
Conference in August and in Long Island in October and November.
His presentation about the Characteristics
of Learning Differences continues to be the most popular.
He presented this topic this summer and fall at: 1) a community college
in New Jersey 2) a community College in Ohio, 3) a parent group in Ohio, 4)
adult educators in Manhattan, New York, 5) employee trainers at Hershey Foods in
Pennsylvania, 6) parents of children enrolled in Title I Reading in Oil City, PA
7) YouthBuild Charter School, in Philadelphia 8) the Learning
Disabilities Association in Austin, TX. 9) Adult educators in Syracuse and 10)
Laubach Literacy Volunteers of Camden, NJ.
Dr. Cooper conducted three one credit in-service courses to the K - 12
teachers in Delaware County. During
the summer he offered a course on teaching math and another on teaching reading
and writing. This fall he taught a
course on inclusion of children with learning disabilities.
A new training that he has developed and offered this year is Planning
and Organization Tips for Teachers and Their Students.
The three times he offered it, this training was very well received with
teachers reporting that they can use the tips to better organize their own
lives, but, even more importantly, the tips and organization tools that were
provided in the training will be very helpful for students who have difficulties
The National Association for Adults with Special Learning Needs is moving again. Until operations are formalized, anyone needing to communicate with the leadership of the association should visit the association’s web site. NAASLN.org. If you need additional information or has specific questions, you can contact Dr. Cooper at 610-446-6126. If he cannot answer your question or address your concern, he will refer you to one of the other board members.
We plan to have a new Learning disAbilities Resources Catalog
ready in January 2001. The Catalog
will have a few new items including a Double Take Assignment Books using
carbonless duplicating paper. These
assignment books are designed for students at different age and educational
The Bureau of Adult Basic and Literacy
Education has funded the Learning Disability Center that will coordinate the
Staff development project operated by Dr. Cooper, the Learning Disabilities
modules, and the Bridges to Practice training, along with additional new staff
development activities. More
details of about the Learning Disabilities Center will be provided in up-coming
Adult educators and volunteer tutors will notice some changes in the
administration of the training provided by Dr. Cooper.
A master schedule of the training that he provides across the state is
being developed by the staff at the Northwest Professional Development Center.
Learning Differences Staff
Development Training Sessions
|Nov. 2||Horizon House||Philadelphia|
|Teaching Reading and Writing Skills to Adults||10:00 - 3:00|
|Nov. 6||Mt. Lebanon Library||Mt. Lebanon|
|Teaching Adults with Learning Differences||6:30 - 8:00|
|Nov. 7||Venango Co. Literacy Council||Oil City|
|Teaching Adults with Learning Differences||9:00 - 3:00|
|Crawford Co. Read||Titusville|
|Practical Applications for Teaching Adults with Differences||9:00 - 12:00|
|Crawford Co. Read||Meadville|
|Teaching Technique for Volunteer Tutors||2:00 - 4:00|
|West End School||Elwood City|
|Screening for Learning Differences and Tic Tac Toe Math||9:30 - 3:00|
|Lawrence Co. Literacy Choices||New Castle|
|Screening Demonstrations||3:00 - 5:00|
|Tic Tac Toe Math||6:00 - 8:00|
|Crawford Co. Read||Meadville|
|Practical Applications for Teaching Adults with Differences||9:00 - 12:00|
|Dec. 7||Alle-Kiski Learning Center||Arnold|
|Teaching Math to Adults with Learning Differences||9:00 - 12:00, 1:00 - 4:00, 6:00 - 9:00|
|Southwest Professional Development Center||Pittsburgh|
|Screening Demonstrations||9:00 - 3:00|
|Dec. 9||Western PA Tutor Conference||Arnold|
|Teaching Low Level Literacy and Numeracy Skills||9:00 - 12:00|
|Mansfield Adult Education||M
|Alternative Math Techniques||5:30 - 9:30|
|Dec. 13||Midstate Literacy Council||DuBois|
|Teaching Adults with Learning Differences||5:30 - 9:00|
|Dec. 14||Midstate Literacy Council||State College|
|Teaching Low Level Literacy and Numeracy Skills||5:00 - 8:00|
As part of the Center’s effort to improve the dissemination of information about learning differences, the Center is beginning to disseminate this newsletter via e-mail. It will be sent by e-mail to all the adult education and literacy programs in Pennsylvania and to adult educators and volunteer tutors who request the newsletter. If you would like to receive the newsletter by e-mail, please send us a message at firstname.lastname@example.org