I have previously posted about my son and his issues. He scored highly on the WISC in verbal and performance but not working memory or processing speed. His achievement is average to below average. For background his 2008 WISC results when he was 8 yrs 5 mths were
Working Memory 44th percentile
Processing Speed 75th percentile
Verbal Indice 98th percentile
Performance Index 99th percentile.
His GAI was reported from memory was 142 (as no full scale was given). At the same time a WIAT was done in which he came up substantially lower in all areas. The lowest was spelling at the 14th percentile. the reading showed -
Reading Fluency - 8 yrs 2 mths
Reading Comprehension 8 yrs 1 mth
AS a matter of update academically, whilst DS's reading has improved, his writing and spelling are still well below average. It has now spread to his maths as well - which is still mainly at an average level but shows a decline - he has abolutely refused to rote learn any time-tables so that did not help.
WE have recently proceeded down the auditory testing route.
Anyway, he was given a full basic hearing test by an audiologist which was a pre-requisite to conducting the auditory processing assessment. Well they have found that he has mild/moderate hearing loss in his left ear at normal speaking level and lower (40db). Apparently, his hearing is almost normal in that ear if people yell or speak very loudly!! IN a quiet room with words being spoken into his ear he heard about 55% in that ear and 92% in the right ear. So he has unilateral hearing loss - but it is not severe. I was wondering if anyone could shed any light on or provide any input on the following -
1. Would such a mild/moderate loss and only in one ear explain the "very" significant difference between his IQ (particularly when calculated as GAI) and achievement in class which is average to below average in almost all areas?
2. Even if he has a physical loss of hearing, could he also have auditory processing difficulties?
3. I am having a hard time working out how his hearing relates to his worst area - writing (2 - 3 years behind his age). He still writes without any punctuation - using "and then" like a much younger child. He writes like someone speaking.
4. Any other suggestions as to what I might try? He will be going to an ear, throat and nose specialist to see if there are any other related conditions.
5. How could have have got to 10.5 years without anyone really suspecting a hearing loss? This includes his own parents! His speech started very early and his language has always been very good although is a bit flat toned (often hoarse) and he mumbles at time.
If anyone has anything to add - whether you have personal experience or not - I would really appreciate it!
We are going through a central auditory processing test with our 8 year old son at the moment. My understanding is that he can certainly have both hearing loss and an auditory processing disorder as they are caused by completely separate things. Our son's auditory processing issues (as I am fairly sure we are going to find out there is something there) are probably related to his dyspraxia. Dyspraxia can also cause dysgraphia which gives a child all sorts of problems with writing and spelling. So dyspraxia could be the link.
That being said, your son's processing speed is not bad. Our son has a processing speed below the 20th percentile, while working memory is above the 99th and most other measures in the 90s. We don't fully understand what's going on with his processing speed and have been told that even if we find he has an auditory processing disorder and that we get treatment for it which will improve his auditory processing, his processing speed is unlikely to ever change.
I don't know if my random thoughts are at all useful but hopefully I've helped in some way. And by the way, don't kick yourself for not knowing. Our daughter was legally blind in one eye and not much better in the other at 5 and a half and neither we, nor preschool teachers, kindergarten teachers, school teachers or even the people sent out from the DHB to do vision testing were aware of it. I only suspected something when I saw one eye move by itself and took her to an optometrist to find out. Kids, especially the bright ones, are very good at compensating for their handicaps.