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PhilipKT

Auditory Dyslexia

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Auditory Dyslexia Is a condition in which a child has difficulty associating sounds with symbols. The child can hear sounds fine, But has difficulty associating sounds with symbols over time, so has problems with intonation. With experience, we learn the relationship of the letters to each other, so we can play in tune, because we know what it sounds like to go from this letter to that letter. We can translate the two symbols into two pitches And understand the distance between them. That’s why it is extremely difficult, for instance, for a cellist to play in very high treble clef, or in a very awkward key, because we’re not used to those symbols and we have to learn them.

I am Looking for ways to help a student who is dealing with this situation? Does anybody have any experience with this?

I’ve got a little looking online without much help, and I would love some guidance.

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I had a beginner adult cello student who had gotten into her mind that there was some relationship between the lines of the staff and the strings of the instrument. I was not able to easily change her perception and she quit lessons before we really resolved it. Is it possible your student has some similar perceptual problem?

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2 hours ago, PhilipKT said:

Auditory Dyslexia Is a condition in which a child has difficulty associating sounds with symbols. The child can hear sounds fine, But has difficulty associating sounds with symbols over time, so has problems with intonation. With experience, we learn the relationship of the letters to each other, so we can play in tune, because we know what it sounds like to go from this letter to that letter. We can translate the two symbols into two pitches And understand the distance between them. That’s why it is extremely difficult, for instance, for a cellist to play in very high treble clef, or in a very awkward key, because we’re not used to those symbols and we have to learn them.

I am Looking for ways to help a student who is dealing with this situation? Does anybody have any experience with this?

I’ve got a little looking online without much help, and I would love some guidance.

Solofege' 

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57 minutes ago, Andrew Victor said:

I had a beginner adult cello student who had gotten into her mind that there was some relationship between the lines of the staff and the strings of the instrument. I was not able to easily change her perception and she quit lessons before we really resolved it. Is it possible your student has some similar perceptual problem?

I understand that problem but that’s not her issue.

she needs help translating the symbols into sounds correctly. Even four octave scales are great, but music is problematic. We have made a lot of progress but I’d love some advice from folks who might have dealt with this before.

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2 hours ago, Andrew Victor said:

I had a beginner adult cello student who had gotten into her mind that there was some relationship between the lines of the staff and the strings of the instrument. I was not able to easily change her perception and she quit lessons before we really resolved it. Is it possible your student has some similar perceptual problem?

Off topic but with lute tablature there is.  The problem is that there are 2 systems.  One has the top line corresponding to the highest pitched string.  The other, Italian, has the top line corresponding to the physically highest string, that is the lowest pitched string.  If you aren't concentrating it can catch you out for a moment while you wonder why the bass line is so complicated.

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I'd not heard of "auditory dyslexia" but it seems to be coterminous with what used to be called auditory processing disorder and that I do have some experience of. APD, when I was involved in the field some 15 years ago, was a rag-bag category for persons (adults as well as children) whose hearing complaints can't be confirmed or explained by conventional audiometric testing and are therefore assumed to be due to a processing defect beyond the relatively straightforward spectral breakdown performed by the cochlea, either in the acoustic nerve or the auditory nuclei of the brainstem. The most common presentation is difficulty identifying sounds against background noise, but of course this can have a huge variety of causes starting with earwax. The hypothesis I tried to test was that abnormal temporal "jitter" in neuronal activity might result specifically in a loss in our ability to make judgements of musical pitch, speech inflections and so forth that depend on precise neural timing. I failed. Is there a neuro-otologist in the room? In the state?

 

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4 hours ago, matesic said:

I'd not heard of "auditory dyslexia" but it seems to be coterminous with what used to be called auditory processing disorder and that I do have some experience of. APD, when I was involved in the field some 15 years ago, was a rag-bag category for persons (adults as well as children) whose hearing complaints can't be confirmed or explained by conventional audiometric testing and are therefore assumed to be due to a processing defect beyond the relatively straightforward spectral breakdown performed by the cochlea, either in the acoustic nerve or the auditory nuclei of the brainstem. The most common presentation is difficulty identifying sounds against background noise, but of course this can have a huge variety of causes starting with earwax. The hypothesis I tried to test was that abnormal temporal "jitter" in neuronal activity might result specifically in a loss in our ability to make judgements of musical pitch, speech inflections and so forth that depend on precise neural timing. I failed. Is there a neuro-otologist in the room? In the state?

 

This young girl suffered from traditional dyslexia, so when we had her intonation problems, her mother( who is brilliant) did some research and came upon this condition, and postulated that her daughter was suffering from it. We  developed some teaching aids and they did help, but I was hoping others had something to offer.

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Interesting.

Usually I think of solfege as a European party trick, but in this case, it might help.  (For this student, I would use Fixed Do) The intermediate step of assigning notes names seems like it might work here.

I have a friend who's a speech pathologist.  I'll ask her if she has any thoughts.

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2 hours ago, PhilipKT said:

This young girl suffered from traditional dyslexia, so when we had her intonation problems, her mother( who is brilliant) did some research and came upon this condition, and postulated that her daughter was suffering from it. We  developed some teaching aids and they did help, but I was hoping others had something to offer.

Right

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2 hours ago, Stephen Fine said:

Interesting.

Usually I think of solfege as a European party trick, but in this case, it might help.  (For this student, I would use Fixed Do) The intermediate step of assigning notes names seems like it might work here.

I have a friend who's a speech pathologist.  I'll ask her if she has any thoughts.

 Stephen, thank you very much I would love some help like that. 

This girl is not tone deaf, but she has difficulty associating symbols with sounds. Even if we do not have perfect pitch, we learn to associate a symbol with a sound, and we can memorize intervals represented by those symbols. instance, she doesn’t seem to understand that an E sharp to G natural is the same as an F natural to G natural. She understands it intellectually, but she doesn’t associate a particular pitch with either symbol. The exercises that we developed that seemed to help were essentially flashcards.We added a visual element, so that she was trained to visualize From letter to letter rather than audiating from sound to sound.

It did help and her intonation improved tremendously. But When she gets the slightest bit nervous, the process goes away and her intonation suffers drastically.

This aspect of dyslexia seems new enough that there’s not a lot of literature on it, or perhaps I’m just not looking in the right place but if your friend thinks that she can help I would be really happy to talk to her.

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Did you draw out the fingerboard with the enharmonics?  

She can colour-code the enharmonics too, if that helps.  Make the sharps blue (or whatever she can relate to) and the flats pink...

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1 hour ago, Rue said:

Did you draw out the fingerboard with the enharmonics?  

She can colour-code the enharmonics too, if that helps.  Make the sharps blue (or whatever she can relate to) and the flats pink...

It’s not just the enharmonics, Which fool most people at first glance, simply because we are less familiar with the symbols. Somewhere there is a famous score of a simple tune happy birthday, written and C flat major, Or some other exotic key, Which is almost unreadable because of all the double flats double sharps and other shockers.

I just mention that because it’s the most obvious.

DF69B556-85C9-4B44-8AA2-C79E36983980.jpeg

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Yes. But some people relate better to colours and a visual.

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I'm getting slow. "Auditory dyslexia" doesn't mean difficulty reading the symbols of music but difficulty interpreting everyday sounds - music, speech, road traffic, the lot. Labels can be misleading (as we all know well) but this child's mother seems to have been researching up the wrong tree

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3 minutes ago, matesic said:

this child's mother seems to have been researching up the wrong tree

my gut feeling was she should have been researching munchhausens by proxy

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10 minutes ago, Bill Merkel said:

my gut feeling was she should have been researching munchhausens by proxy

:D

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https://www.sheetmusicplus.com/title/playing-with-colour-for-violin-book-3-sheet-music/20433105

Don't know if color coded notes would help but may be worth trying.

"A carefully correlated blend of colored and traditional note reading, as used in Sharon Goodey's Playing with Colour for Piano, means reading is acquired throughout volumes 1, 2, and 3, resulting in complete comprehension of standard notation by the end of Book 3"

Assessment by paediatric speech pathologist or occupational therapist may define the problem more precisely.

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19 hours ago, matesic said:

I'm getting slow. "Auditory dyslexia" doesn't mean difficulty reading the symbols of music but difficulty interpreting everyday sounds - music, speech, road traffic, the lot. Labels can be misleading (as we all know well) but this child's mother seems to have been researching up the wrong tree

The mother has a PhD in bio statistics. I am pretty confident she is researching in the right area. I may be verbalizing the problem incorrectly, but I guarantee you she is not.

we partially dealt with the problem by focusing on the visual: Hearing internally was not working at all, so instead of hearing the sounds mentally, we focused seeing the symbols and going from symbol to symbol.

Honestly, I’m not exactly sure what process is going on, but the visual approach worked quite well. I was hoping for some insight from other teachers who’ve had a similar problem.

 

Edited by PhilipKT
Addendum

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4 hours ago, pjham said:

https://www.sheetmusicplus.com/title/playing-with-colour-for-violin-book-3-sheet-music/20433105

Don't know if color coded notes would help but may be worth trying.

"A carefully correlated blend of colored and traditional note reading, as used in Sharon Goodey's Playing with Colour for Piano, means reading is acquired throughout volumes 1, 2, and 3, resulting in complete comprehension of standard notation by the end of Book 3"

Assessment by paediatric speech pathologist or occupational therapist may define the problem more precisely.

Yes, I have suggested they go see the therapist who treated her visual dyslexia when she was much younger.

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Well the reason I mention solofege is because I'm quite dyslexic but in weird non traditional ways and it really helped me.

and solofege is way beyond a party favor, it is the key to ear training and the key to becoming a great composer imo.

for me solofege works great, frankly imo the traditional, or what has become traditional ways of teaching music, much in the way your describing is the wrong way to teach, it is too "bookish" "booky" "thinky" demands too much mental energy to something that is not "music" or musical,I always get kids to play by ear first and then go back into notation.

so my advice is skip notation all the way around at first, just focus on ear training and pitch memory and recollection,we'll call it learn to play by ear and use solofege as the bridge that will help eventually connect to notation, finger position and other "musicy" things. Melodies can be sung using solofege and then once the pitches are ingrained the dyslexic person can use PITCH to dial in intonation instead of relying on muscle memory and "real estate location" of the finger board

so hear a pitch, what is that note?  it's a middle C,ok whats this note one whole step up? this is a D, hear and memorize, then small melodies can be tackled,all the time playing the pitch, identifying the letter name of the pitch , then introduce solofege "verbiage" so you have "memorizing "lyrics" {do,re,me and such} when the melodies are sung out loud, then move that over to violin , then work on notation and intonation positioning. 

again the focus should be on ear training and pitch memory/association with a letter, once that clicks the rest usually falls into place because the ear can then correct or compensate for whatever misfiring may be going on with the way you "normies" think

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16 minutes ago, jezzupe said:

Well the reason I mention solofege is because I'm quite dyslexic but in weird non traditional ways and it really helped me.

and solofege is way beyond a party favor, it is the key to ear training and the key to becoming a great composer imo.

for me solofege works great, frankly imo the traditional, or what has become traditional ways of teaching music, much in the way your describing is the wrong way to teach, it is too "bookish" "booky" "thinky" demands too much mental energy to something that is not "music" or musical,I always get kids to play by ear first and then go back into notation.

so my advice is skip notation all the way around at first, just focus on ear training and pitch memory and recollection,we'll call it learn to play by ear and use solofege as the bridge that will help eventually connect to notation, finger position and other "musicy" things. Melodies can be sung using solofege and then once the pitches are ingrained the dyslexic person can use PITCH to dial in intonation instead of relying on muscle memory and "real estate location" of the finger board

so hear a pitch, what is that note?  it's a middle C,ok whats this note one whole step up? this is a D, hear and memorize, then small melodies can be tackled,all the time playing the pitch, identifying the letter name of the pitch , then introduce solofege "verbiage" so you have "memorizing "lyrics" {do,re,me and such} when the melodies are sung out loud, then move that over to violin , then work on notation and intonation positioning. 

again the focus should be on ear training and pitch memory/association with a letter, once that clicks the rest usually falls into place because the ear can then correct or compensate for whatever misfiring may be going on with the way you "normies" think

Of course I agree with teaching by ear first: I never use a book until several weeks into training.

And I agree with Solfege. The problem is that this girls ears are inadequate. She doesn’t hear the way we hear. She can’t sing at all.

What your describe is very close to what we do except we add a visual element( that’s why enharmonics are initially difficult)

All during our time together I haven’t been able to use any of the usual teaching methods. The alternate methods we devised(almost exactly what you have described, so well done)did work but the music she is playing now is advanced enough that I was asking for additional guidance  from anyone who might have anything to share.

Edited by PhilipKT

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1 hour ago, PhilipKT said:

Of course I agree with teaching by ear first: I never use a book until several weeks into training.

And I agree with Solfege. The problem is that this girls ears are inadequate. She doesn’t hear the way we hear. She can’t sing at all.

What your describe is very close to what we do except we add a visual element( that’s why enharmonics are initially difficult)

All during our time together I haven’t been able to use any of the usual teaching methods. The alternate methods we devised(almost exactly what you have described, so well done)did work but the music she is playing now is advanced enough that I was asking for additional guidance  from anyone who might have anything to share.

Yes, well it does only work to a point, particularly when we start factoring in complex rhythm/tempo, well maybe that's the ticket for her,drums

I do like working on these types of "cases" I like to think of them as medical mysteries, and to a certain extent it is,  I don't have any further advice other than to keep trying and to be open to encouraging her to play drums if she become too frustrated.

It's a good way for kids to be able to participate in "reindeer games" when there may be short comings or disabilities 

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3 hours ago, jezzupe said:

Well the reason I mention solofege is because I'm quite dyslexic but in weird non traditional ways..............

Of course.   How else would you be dyslexic?  :huh:  ;)  :lol:

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7 hours ago, PhilipKT said:

Hearing internally was not working at all

 

3 hours ago, PhilipKT said:

The problem is that this girls ears are inadequate. She doesn’t hear the way we hear. She can’t sing at all.

That's clearly the nub. According to my unproven theory (several others have played with similar ideas), temporally imprecise neuronal processing in the order of a fraction of a millisecond somewhere along the auditory pathway might have a crucial effect on the perception of musical intervals - even tonality itself. If the child can't sing, she may not even be able to distinguish a musical note from noise of a similar pitch. Learning the symbols of music are of little importance if she can't hear a tune in her own playing. Obviously one would like to be able to do as much for her as possible, but as jezzupe suggests in addition to vocal training she might be better off playing a pitchless instrument where errors of a few milliseconds are excusable!

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