Testing Mom

TestingMom.com is the premiere online resource to help children prepare for testing and school success. It was "born" out of what could have been a tragic experience for my son, Sam. I noticed Sam didn’t look at me when I’d talk to him, and it was hard to get him to focus on anything. I couldn’t shake the feeling that something was very wrong so we took Sam to see this renowned specialist in NYC. After running all these tests, the doctor said to me, “I have good news and bad news. The good news is that your son can’t hear.” “We can fix that,” she said, “with surgery.” “But here’s the bad news,” she said. “Our psychologist gave him an IQ test. He scored in the 37th percentile. This child will never be very intelligent. You need to find a special ed program for him.” “Wait,” I said, “are you sure? Can’t I do anything to help him get better?” The doctor just shook her head, and said, “not this kid; his IQ’s too low.” I couldn’t believe what she was telling me. I had dreams for Sam. But now, with this, I didn’t know what kind of dreams I could have for him. As soon as I got home, I called my mother. I asked her, “is it true? Is there nothing we can do to help Sam?” My mom said, “That’s crazy! The doctor doesn’t know what she’s talking about. Get his hearing fixed and then I’ll show you how intelligent he can be.” My mom has a PhD in Early Childhood education. We got Sam’s hearing fixed. Then my mom helped me put together a program to build Sam’s skills for school and testing. I had a full time job back then, but I’d come home from work every night, and Sam would be waiting for me, so excited to start our special learning time together. We would snuggle in bed and work on his skills for about half an hour. I had to create all my own materials to teach him. I put them all in a big box that I decorated with Super heroes. As much as possible, we’d use his Superhero action figures for learning – we’d count them; we’d talk about the colors in Robin’s uniform, line them up from tallest to shortest. To Sam, we were just playing, but each activity we did was designed to help him grow developmentally. A year later, Sam was retested at his nursery school. She said, “Karen, you aren’t going to believe this, but Sam made the highest score in his class – 94th percentile.” He got into our first choice school and he turned out to be a great student. Sam is all grown up now; he just graduated from NYU. And when I look back on my life of bringing up my son, that year I worked with him when he was 3-years-old was probably the best year I ever spent with him – certainly better than when he became a teenager and wanted nothing to do with me. I’m not a doctor. I’m not a psychologist. I’m not a formal educator. I'm a MOM who knows what it’s like to want to give my child the best education possible so he could reach his full potential. I was determined to do whatever I had to do to make that happen and I know that you are, too. Otherwise, you wouldn’t be here. I’m here to help you do that…