[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: In adults, sleep is necessary for the offline improvement of certain skills, such as sequential finger tapping, but whether children show a similar effect is still debatable. Here, we tested whether sleep is associated with offline performance improvement in children. Nine-and 11-year-old children trained on an explicit sequential finger tapping task. On the night following training, their parents observed and recorded the duration of each child's sleep. The following day, all children performed a surprise retest session on the previously trained sequence. In both 9-and 11-year-old children, skill performance was significantly improved during the first retest session relative to the end of training on the previous day, confirming the offline improvement in performance. There was a significant correlation between the degree of improvement and sleep duration the night after training, suggesting that in children, as in adults, sleep is associated with offline skill enhancement. Copyright: ß 2014 Sugawara et al. This is an open-access article distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution License, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original author and source are credited. Data Availability: The authors confirm that all data underlying the findings are fully available without restriction. All relevant data are within the paper and its Supporting Information files. Funding:. Part of this study is the result of the project ''Development of biomarker candidates for social behavior'', carried out under the Strategic Research Program for Brain Science by the Minister of Education, Culture, Sports, Science and Technology of Japan (http://brainprogram.mext.go.jp/). The funders had no role in study design, data collection and analysis, decision to publish, or preparation of the manuscript. Competing Interests: The authors have declared that no competing interests exist.
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Objective:
The present study examined the effectiveness of response to intervention (RTI) for the early detection and intervention for specific reading disorder.
RTIs were applied to seventy-seven first graders (36 boys and 41 girls) for the early detection and intervention of specific reading disorders. The outcomes were examined when the children reached the third grade.
Reading difficulties were detected in four children at the beginning of the first grade. Decoding training and vocabulary learning were conducted with these children as interventions for reading difficulties. Three children exhibited improvements in reading difficulties at the end of the first grade. The fourth child responded poorly and was diagnosed with specific reading disorder. The assessment of outcomes at the third grade showed that this child still had reading difficulties, whereas no other child displayed symptoms for being diagnosed with specific reading disorder.
RTI is effective for the early detection and intervention of specific reading disorder.
No preview · Article · Jul 2014 · No to hattatsu. Brain and development
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: The present study aimed to clarify the efficacy of decoding training focusing on the correspondence between written symbols and their readings for children with difficulty reading hiragana (Japanese syllabary).
Thirty-five children with difficulty reading hiragana were selected from among 367 first-grade elementary school students using a reading aloud test and were then divided into intervention (n=15) and control (n=20) groups. The intervention comprised 5 minutes of decoding training each day for a period of 3 weeks using an original program on a personal computer. Reading time and number of reading errors in the reading aloud test were compared between the groups.
The intervention group showed a significant shortening of reading time (F(1,33)=5.40, p<0.05, two-way ANOVA) compared to the control group. However, no significant difference in the number of errors was observed between the two groups. Ten children in the control group who wished to participate in the decoding training were included in an additional study;as a result, improvement of the number of reading errors was observed (t= 2.863, p< 0.05, paired t test), but there was no improvement in reading time.
Decoding training was found to be effective for improving both reading time and reading errors in children with difficulty reading hiragana.
No preview · Article · May 2013 · No to hattatsu. Brain and development
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Functional magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) studies involve normalization so that the brains of different subjects can be described using the same coordinate system. However, standard brain templates, including the Montreal Neurological Institute (MNI) template that is most frequently used at present, were created based on the brains of Western adults. Because morphological characteristics of the brain differ by race and ethnicity and between adults and children, errors are likely to occur when data from the brains of non-Western individuals are processed using these templates. Therefore, this study was conducted to collect basic data for the creation of a Japanese pediatric standard brain. Participants in this study were 45 healthy children (contributing 65 brain images) between the ages of 6 and 9years, who had nothing notable in their perinatal and other histories and neurological findings, had normal physical findings and cognitive function, exhibited no behavioral abnormalities, and provided analyzable MR images. 3D-T1-weighted images were obtained using a 1.5-T MRI device, and images from each child were adjusted to the reference image by affine transformation using SPM8. The lengths were measured and compared with those of the MNI template. The Western adult standard brain and the Japanese pediatric standard brain obtained in this study differed greatly in size, particularly along the anteroposterior diameter and in height, suggesting that the correction rates are high, and that errors are likely to occur in the normalization of pediatric brain images. We propose that the use of the Japanese pediatric standard brain created in this study will improve the accuracy of identification of brain regions in functional brain imaging studies involving children.
Full-text · Article · Jun 2012 · Brain & development