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The Pretenders: Gifted People Who Have Difficulty Learning Paperback – February 1, 1997


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Product Details

  • Paperback: 177 pages
  • Publisher: High Tide Press (February 1, 1997)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1892696061
  • ISBN-13: 978-1892696069
  • Product Dimensions: 6.4 x 9.1 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 13.4 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 5.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (3 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #736,315 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Editorial Reviews

From Scientific American

Positive, upbeat, written in plain English, The Pretenders creates a new glimmer of hope for all who are concerned about the declining effectiveness of our schools. With insight, sensitivity, and the wisdom gathered through unusually thorough training and years of classroom experience, Dr. Guyer gives clear explanations of why some of our current educational practices are perpetuating the very problems they are intended to solve. Her suggestions offer a new perspective on teaching techniques and classroom management. There is no question that the secrets she shares can lead all learners to a dramatically increased level of achievement.

Barbara Guyer is the master of straightforward solutions carried out with elegant simplicity. Readers will find a refreshing new approach to problem-solving as well as a vast array of specific, practical ideas for helping students resolve the difficulties that prevent them from succeeding in today's schools. Those committed to helping the functionally illiterate, non-readers, and poor readers will find encouragement and inspiration on every page. --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.

Review

The Pretenders comes at a particularly opportune time, a time when the very possibility of a reading disability in highly gifted individuals is often questioned and frequently misunderstood. What Dr. Guyer has accomplished in this simple, graceful, and highly accessible volume is to make the notion of reading disability and its consequences for the individual, for his or her family, for educators and for society, come to life. The reader will be deeply moved, as I was, after meeting and reading about these diverse individuals. -- From the Foreword by Sally E. Shaywitz, M.D., Yale University School of Medicine

The Pretenders conveys a deep understanding of the challenges of dyslexia and other learning disabilities. Family members, friends, and especially teachers will find this book enlightening and rewarding. -- Gaston Caperton, Governor of West Virginia

The Pretenders will offer inspiration and hope for students starting down this difficult path toward growth and success. It will also help parents, educators, and health and mental health professionals to understand the emotional pain and academic struggles caused by unrecognized learning disabilities. -- Larry B. Silver, M.D., Director of Training in Child & Adolescent Psychiatry, Georgetown University

Barbara Guyer is one of the truly special people in the world, and this is an equally special book. The Pretenders conveys a telling lesson about the need to deal with special children with greater creativity and sensitivity. This is an important book for all those who love or care about children with special needs and abilities. -- Robert E. Shepherd Jr., Professor of Law, University of Richmond Law School

Positive, upbeat, written in plain English, The Pretenders creates a new glimmer of hope for all who are concerned about the declining effectiveness of our schools. With insight, sensitivity, and the wisdom gathered through unusually thorough training and years of classroom experience, Dr. Guyer gives clear explanations of why some of our current educational practices are perpetuating the very problems they are intended to solve. Her suggestions offer a new perspective on teaching techniques and classroom management. There is no question that the secrets she shares can lead all learners to a dramatically increased level of achievement.

Barbara Guyer is the master of straightforward solutions carried out with elegant simplicity. Readers will find a refreshing new approach to problem-solving as well as a vast array of specific, practical ideas for helping students resolve the difficulties that prevent them from succeeding in today's schools. Those committed to helping the functionally illiterate, non-readers, and poor readers will find encouragement and inspiration on every page. -- Suzanne H. Stevens, author of The Learning Disabled Child

Such a great idea for a book! I'm glad an educator of Barbara Guyer's caliber decided to write a follow-up to my study of children coping with learning difficulties. -- Mary MacCracken, author of Turnabout Children

The stories [in The Pretenders] tug emotional heartstrings. They make us joyful that these persevering young people are successful, but sad for the many who are not recognized, told they have no learning disabilities or ADHD, and that all they need to do is try harder or get their act together. (The knowledge of the author, and her warmth, are reflected in the writing.) As readers, we wish we could study with her, have our young or adult children work with her, or in some way have her wisdom rub off on us. -- Regina Cicci, Ph.D., reviewed in Perspectives, the magazine of The Orton Dyslexia Society

With its comfortable story-telling style and the variety of differences and strategies described, readers of The Pretenders will get explanations of why certain students need special help, feel empathy for learners who have struggled, and be enlightened by the hope that shines through each chapter. Dr. Barbara Guyer shares conversations and observations of eight students with learning differences who have crossed her path at many levels of her teaching career. She uncovers their cover-ups with masterful listening, responding, and guiding. She helps them push their positives, develop their perspectives, and find their possibilities. Had teachers read this book at their undergraduate level, they would have better understood their students and given them more appropriate help. With each sterling case she writes, Dr. Guyer gives us pause to ponder and hope for the future. -- Alice Koontz, Fellow, Academy of Orton-Gillingham Practitioners & Educators


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12 of 14 people found the following review helpful By Rocco B. Rubino on April 11, 2003
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
This book "hooked" me at chapter one when the author recounts her story about how she got into the field. After you read the first chapter, you get the impression that once you enter the world of LD, you have entered the region of the damned, regardless of whether or not you are a student w/the diagnosis, a parent, or a teacher. LD carries a "stigma" that is akin to having the mark-of-the-beast, in some circles. Students are treated like second class citizens, or as if they were going to school in a third world dictatorship, parents are dissed and disregarded, the teachers never get the materials, respect from admin. or peers, and the administrative support they need to make sure these dear children have a decent shot at success.
The Pretenders will open your eyes into this little understood world. At times, it may even make you cry as you reflect upon the pain that students and parents (and adults w/LD) have to endure on a daily basis.
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20 of 25 people found the following review helpful By A Customer on May 3, 1999
Format: Hardcover
This excellent book is a must for those with family members suffering from ADD and LD problems. Such readers will recognize a thread in common with the adult "pretenders" whose stories the author artfully presents. Each vignette recounts a heroic struggle to succeed against imposing odds. A good read!
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By Connie S Mol on September 20, 2013
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
This book touched my heart and soul, loved how much the author truly cared and had the students at her best interest. My grandson is dyslexia and this hit home, a must read.
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