Aug 022013

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Q: I’ve heard the Lindamood Bell is good, but it is so expensive. Is it worth the money? Can you provide a Lindamood Bell review?

The Lindamood Bell platform is a well-respected set of programs that help kids with learning disabilities learn to read, comprehend, and do math (depending upon the program used). The Lindamood Bell programs have proven research behind them to document their effectiveness.

SO, Let me share with you my experiences with Lindamood Bell in this Lindamood Bell Review for you. My answer to the question is part Lindamood Bell Review, part personal experience, and partly an answer to the question about the cost/worth of the program.

Lindamood Bell Review : Our Evaluation Experience:

We had our child evaluated by the Lindamood Bell Center near us. We looked at the possibility of enrolling our son in the program. The environment was very friendly and the center director was quite knowledgeable. I actually LOVED the Lindamood Bell center and would have placed my son there without hesitation.

We paid a fee to have our son evaluated by the center. The results were clearly explained, and specific programs were recommended based upon the Lindamood Bell review of my son’s learning needs. I had no complaints about the evaluation and results explanation whatsoever. All of that was very professionally done.

Unfortunately, the cost of the program was well over $10,000 dollars and I felt somewhat like I was in a “hard sell” situation as they tried to convince me the program was worth the cost.

It’s not that my child’s learning needs wouldn’t be WORTH the money. His learning needs were priceless. Rather the price was far out of our reach. It was suggested we could take out a second mortgage on our home. Um. No. They do offer a financing program too, which is good because most ordinary families would have to finance the program.

There were also no guarantees that the Lindamood Bell programs would work for our child in the average time frame. If it took longer, that would cost more. SIGH.

Any individual child’s timeframe could be shorter than average, or it could be longer and cost more. There is no real way to gauge ahead of time how long it will take your child to complete the program. Again, the programs do have solid research behind them, so it could be worth the money if you have enough to pay for the program.

My Lindamood Bell Review Surprise:

I was also going to college at the time, getting my Master’s Degree in Instructional Design. That same summer, I saw a job posting on the college’s job board for an opening at the Lindamood Bell Learning Center. I went to check it out.

The job was temporary summer employment. The training was for 7-10 days. Then the new hires begin working with kids in the center. One week of training and you’re ready to teach kids. Somehow, I thought the people working with my child would have more experience than that. I didn’t expect there might be a college student who had been trained for a week providing a $10,000+ program for my child.

The Lindamood Bell centers do have people who work there year-round. They are no doubt highly knowledgeable and excellent at implementing the programs. If your child was placed with a well-experienced person, that person could probably provide excellent results in a shorter period of time.

In any case, when I read the notification and researched the job, I lost all interest in paying the hefty fees for someone at the Lindamood Bell center to work with my son. I figured I could get the instructor’s manuals and figure the programs out myself.

For your reading and Lindamood Bell review, I took a screenshot of this year’s similar job announcement. They have openings all over the country. You can read the announcement and decide for yourself whether you would meet the job criteria–In other words, could you learn how to use the program and implement it?

lindamood bell review

CLICK to see larger image.

Lindamood Bell review – My Personal Revelation:

If you wonder whether you can handle implementing the Lindamood Bell programs yourself: I’d say, “If you can read and follow directions, you can probably provide the program(s) to your own child.” 😉

With what I knew at that point, we decided to take a Do-It-Ourself approach with the Lindamood Bell programs my son needed. They have teacher’s guides.. So I bought a couple of them!!

I ordered Lindamood Bell Teacher’s Guides and Program Materials and implemented some of the programs at home. We also used materials from the Seeing Stars, LiPS, and Visualizing & Verbalizing programs.

LiPS and Visualizing & Verbalizing were the Lindamood Bell programs we used most heavily. We had good success with them. Some moms have had difficulty with the LiPS program. That generally seems to happen when the parent and child have difficulty working with each other. In such a case, paying a private tutor or the Lindamood Bell center might be a more effective solution.

I will also be totally transparent and let you know, I had already had Orton-Gillingham training. If you feel like you need training, Lindamood Bell does offer training, and it might help you to take their training. The training is a lot cheaper than the full-fledged program. Plus, if you get trained, you can make money working with other people’s children too. 

If you think you might like to arm yourself with their training, go to the Lindamood website and get on their mailing list.  They will send you brochures about upcoming training events as well as a catalog of their products. As I mentioned, you can order Lindamood Bell Teacher’s Guides and Program Materials online.

Trust me, using the Lindamood Bell programs and materials based on the Teacher’s Manuals works well enough if you can’t afford their first-hand services. The programs are not rocket science. If you can read and follow directions, you can probably provide the program for your child.

I’m sure the quality of our drill and practice wasn’t as intense as it would have been provided at the Lindamood Bell center. However, it was a WHOLE LOT cheaper for me to work with my own boys. We had good success using the programs.

Lindamood Bell Review Summary

I WOULD definitely recommend the Lindamood Bell programs to anyone. I am particularly fond of the LiPS program for any child who struggles with phonemic awareness. I continue to recommend LiPS and other Lindamood Bell programs to other moms for home use. I would give a positive Lindamood Bell review for any of their programs.

That’s my Lindamood Bell review based upon our experiences. Truly, I believe the Lindamood Bell programs are well worth the at-home cost if you have the time and ability to work with your own child. In terms of a child’s lifetime, even the center’s cost could be “worth it.” However, If you can’t afford the center’s program, don’t let that stop you from providing a Lindamood Bell program to your child!

I hope this Lindamood Bell review is helpful to you in making decisions on behalf of your child. If you’d like to leave a Lindamood Bell review of your own, feel free to leave a comment below. If you post a review, please be aware you are responsible for your own Lindamood Bell review content. Please remain FACTUAL, respectful, and maintain the privacy of individuals. 😉

Best Wishes,

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  10 Responses to “Is Lindamood-Bell a worthwhile or effective program?”

  1. Thank you so much for this review! I have searched the web for a week to see if anyone felt the same way as I did about their proposed plan. My son had intense therapy as a toddler and even if I wanted to do that to him again – which I do not – he wouldn’t go for it because he did it for so many years. I think I would be more inclined to drive 5 hrs for an evaluation if my son didn’t have special needs and very few strengths in reading. Well, not enough to make me think we are going to skip over any programs, but I could be wrong….lol… I just have one question.. did you do one program at a time? That is my only question. I know I need to do Talkies (pre V&V) but wasn’t sure if I needed to finish it before starting Seeing Stars or start them together… I will be doing it with him at home.
    Thanks for any advice you have on the order you found most helpful when completing them.

    • Generally speaking, I like doing one intense program at a time in basic speech/language or pre-reading skills at a time. If a child needs help in basic math concepts and skills, I will do an intense program in that area during the same span of time.

      Basically, the way I like to work the programs is to do one reading-skill program with one-on-one, intense instruction along with a computer-based practice program for reinforcement and faster progress. I’ll do the same thing with math.

      Working on additional programs at an intense level can often lead to the child feeling overwhelmed. That can cause the child’s mind to shut down and be inaccessible for meaningful learning. 😉

  2. Your review was very helpful, I have always wanted my 9 year old to join Lindamood bell program but they’re prices are way above our budget. My son has ADHD, it’s very hard for him to focus and stay still for a long time. He’s very behind on reading and writing. What is your advice to me, would you recommend us to order the Lyndamood bell materials to work with our son?

    • Whether or not the Lindamood-Bell programs would work for your son will totally depend upon his specific reasons for struggling with reading and writing. The biggest key to success is to have a comprehensive neuropsychological evaluation to determine exactly which processes are an issue for your son. Kids can have problems with memory, recall, sequencing, planning, processing, comprehension, etc. SO, it’s really difficult to make any specific recommendation for a child I’ve never met, especially without comprehensive evaluation information. If you have an evaluation, the key is to pay close attention to your son’s learning strengths and weaknesses, then match his needs to specific programs. I know that’s not the most direct answer, but I do hope it’s helpful.

  3. Hi! I stumbled across your post today while I was hunting for information on Lindamood-Bell. I was trained by Lindamood-Bell in the LiPS program last fall at one of their training workshops Prior to the workshop, I did purchase a manual to implement the program with students I had who were in need of the program. My feeling after using it for almost a year with many, many students is that is is not really an intuitive open and go program that just anyone can use successfully. I’ve had to go back several times and speak with my workshop mates along with the presenter to get answers to varies parts of the program implementation. I just wanted to add a little more to the perspective from someone who has been through and used the program.

    • Thank you for sharing your experience. Training and/or observation of an experienced provider is definitely beneficial. How well anyone can do with the program out-of-the-box will depend a lot on the person’s education and experiences, and how well they can follow or understand the instructions. 😉

  4. I’m curious, the cost would have been over $10k for how many hours of instruction?

    • We were looking at a summer program, and if I recall properly it was 6 hours per day, 5 days per week for most of the summer. I don’t recall exactly though, so that’s about as good of a guestimate as I can give. 😉

  5. Thank you so much for your review. I too am thinking about using these tools to work with my 3rd and 4th grader. If I do not have them evaluated, what would be your advice for beginning the program with them?

    • Without evaluation data and no other information about your kids’ specific learning needs, I couldn’t really give meaningful insight. Your intuition about your kids and their needs will be important in picking the right program(s) for them, if you don’t want to have them evaluated. 😉 If you’d like to information to help you decide whether to have them evaluated, you might want to read the article on Learning Disabilities testing. Either way, pursuing quality programs and working to meet your kids’ needs is a great start! 😀

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