NLD and cheating like crazy!
When I was in school, I’d cheat like crazy. Like, every single test? Mad cheating.
Not the type of cheating like you’d see in common use, like copying from someone else’s paper or stealing the SCANTRON database. I’d cheat using the test itself.
I speedread and skim extremely, extremely quickly. If a test was open book, I’d have a question like… “What’s the definition of a butte?” and I’d scan the text of the book for buttes and write about plateaus or whatever. Most of the questions in worksheets were like that, so I never had to keep anything in my head for more than a minute.
On multiple choice questions without the book, I have to use a different method of analysis. I think teachers are wiser to it now, but there used to be tons of tells for questions. When there are four answers to a multiple choice question, the four answers tend to follow a pattern. There are two that are confusingly similar, one that’s right (if you don’t understand the question) that’s similar to one of the two, and a fourth that’s just a wacky horribly wrong answer meant to pick out the kids who’re just marking things. So in the case of algebra, you can test the two similar ones and bust through a test in no time, and in other cases you could use the similar ones to cheat and split it from a 25% chance to a 50% chance, and then I’d use what little I absorbed in class to figure it out. In other subjects, things were slightly less obvious but still pretty easily guessed.
I set the curve on most of the tests I took in high school. I was never there, and I never bothered with the book. I just absorbed a bit and used the test taking tricks I’d made to get through them all.
I still use the skimming thing when I’m trying to code or working on anything. I don’t absorb knowledge well at all but I can temporarily hold it.
I don’t know what could be done to better teach NLD kids. It’s something I’ll be pondering for a while.