Dr. Selznick’s blogs are written to help parents navigate the difficult waters of raising children struggling with learning disabilities such as dyslexia, as well as ADHD and deficits of executive functioning. His overriding mission is to speak to parents in “down-to-earth terms free of jargon.” 


Blog #1 from 2009

Started in 2009 upon the release of my first book, The Shut-Down Learner, there have been nearly 600 blog posts completed on a weekly basis over those years..

I thought it would be fun to look back on some of the earliest ones (slightly edited), to see what I was saying and to see if they still hold up.

So, in that spirit, here is Blog #1 from April, 2009.


“Anxiety over your child’s school-based problems can start very early. A mom recently contacted me after reading “The Shut-Down Learner.

“My son is drowning in school. Do you think he could be a shut-down learner,” she asked.

After asking a few more questions, I was struck by the fact that the child in question was only in kindergarten.

When I wrote The Shut-Down Learner I was envisioning a disconnected, shut-down teenager. However, as I gave more talks to parents, so many of the concerns being raised concerned young children. This led me to understand that so much of the concept of a shutting down adolescent begins very early and made me think about how this can be prevented from happening as early as possible.

A formula I used frequently in talks to parents helps to explain the shutting down process  over time.

Here’s the formula:

Cracks in the Foundation + Time + Lack of Understanding + Widening cracks + Increased  Family Tensions (around the school issues)  = Shut-Down Learner

So, if you are the mom of a kindergarten or first grade child who is starting to  shut-down, there likely are cracks in the foundation. The next step is to know what those cracks are and how to identify and address them.

As we progress with future blogs, I will break down this formula for you in depth so that you will understand each of the parts and what you may be able to do as the child’s parent.”

Takeaway Point

OK, some 14 years later, I still agree!!!

More to come.

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