How do you even begin to work out what it is that your child falls under inregard to any learning difficulties. My daughter was assessed on the 97th percentile with possible ADD characteristics. So many of her traits in the classroom and at home point towards dyslexic tendancies: lacks any organisation, spells eratically, her hanwriting floats above the lines, gets crammed up, is very messy. She hates to practice anything. Has to constantly reminded or stood over to get any homework done. Can't structure a story of any decent length. I feel she should be able to write better stories with more details and description than she can. The few sentances she can structure are quite 'babyish' for her age (9years) .Read no problem (reads about 3 to 4 years above age level) but then being gifted probably masked any potential trouble there. What is difference between saying she's very 'visual spatial'? Is this just another way of describing someone who is actually dyslexic to some degree?
Visual spatial, dyslexic or ADD (without hyperactivity): one and the same???
Ok, since the race is delayed, I will be brave and take a shot of this.
According to MY OWN "research" the type of characteristics you describe are characteristic of Visual Spatial struggling in a non-vs environment.
The "problem" with the DSM-IV criteria we use to diagnose the likes of ADHD (there is no longer any such thing as ADD under the DSM-IV - only ADHD with or without hyperactivity) is that they use a "cluster" of "observed" external "behaviours" with the assumption that like "symptoms" equates to the same cause.
In reality, almost any symptoms of any disorder could result from being VS in a non-vs "world" .... that being the case, it is reasonable to assume that there would be other "unseen differences" that could also appear to be some form of "mental disorder" under the diagnostic criteria when in reality they arent.
It works like this .... if one is neurologically DIFFERENT but treated as if one is not, the outcome will be compromised neurological integrity (due to having the "normal" neurological pathways focused on for development rather than the specific pathways one actually needs to function effectively and efficiently).
How detrimentally that affects one will vary from individual to individual - just as it varied when we forced the lefthanded to behave as if they were righthanded.
The Visual Spatial have "comparatively under-developed" short term auditory memories .... some will be able to "compensate" in the assessments (eg they may be able to remember the numbers as "tones" from a phone and be able to appear to recall the numbers well if they are able to "translate" back and forth skillfully) - others will show up on assessment as being comparitively "weak" in this area.
This "weakness" REFLECTS traits characteristics of "ADHD" (or be recorded using the older term of "ADD" ).
It is not the same thing as having "ADD" but that can, in some circumstances be helpful when trying to communicate areas of difficulty to others.
Likewise, lack of sequential memory, and strong visual memory can combine to make tasks such as "decoding" or "symbol search" difficult.
These characteristics would be REFLECTIVE of "dyslexia" in "conventional terms".
Lack of organisational skills comes from lack of opportunity and support in developing an organisational system that is right for the individual (most organisational systems are "sequence" or time reference based.
I personally am concerned with our habitual labelling of children as having a "disorder" or defect of some kind where the problem is our own lack of knowledge, understanding, skill and adaptability as a society.
I once attended a seminar where "dyslexia" was described as "having ones brain wiring all messed up and tangled" - nonsense - the brain wiring is perfectly orderly and functional - its just wired to be better at different tasks to normal.
I have yet to see any evidence that ADD and Dyselxia and the likes - as seperate, organic "defects" actually exist - infact, evidence is now pointing strongly against "dyslexia" being a seperate "condition" in its own right - given that recently it was "discovered" that "dyslexics" use the visual/spatial centre of their brains to process language (interestingly it was a kiwi nurse who "proved" this to be the case).
The "symptoms" of "ADHD" are very typical responses to STRESS - nothing more, nothing less - and trying to live as though you are "normal" when you are not - or living in a way that is totally at odds with your fundamental design can be very stressful indeed!
Handwriting is problematic for many VS (myself included) and in my opinion is a problem to be taken very seriously due to the potential neurological issues it can cause someone who is VS - but a keyboard is VS friendly and if your daughter is so resistant to writing, I would take that as a clear indicator that alternatives would be appropriate.
In terms of what terminology or definitions to use - my advice is to be flexible and observant and use whatever terms and understandings will best serve your daughter in any given situation.
I would be cautious about using either ADD or Dyslexic to communicate her needs unless you are sure that the response will be helpful to her - many methods employed to "help" those regarded as having either can be very VS unfriendly and that is the last thing you want.
I was interested in your comment about lack of organisational skills being a lack of opportunity and support in developing an appropriate system.
My girls and I are totally unorganised and really, really struggle - I would love to help them find a system that works for them.....and me too!!!....
what are some suggestions you could give that may work for a visual spatial person with short term auditory memory problems?