We look at the definition of dyslexia, the myths surrounding it and how to work with dyslexic students.
In this post we look at what is dyslexia, the myths surrounding it and how best to adapt tutoring to the student’s way of thinking
While it does present a unique set of challenges when it comes to learning, it is important to remember that some of the world’s most creative and highly successful entrepreneurs are dyslexic and that it is not a learning difficulty which has held them back.
A few of these (who also happen to be outspoken on the subject) include the likes of Sir Richard Branson, Orlando Bloom, Jim Carrey, Whoopi Goldberg and Keira Knightley. Even famous scholars such as Albert Einstein and Leonardo Da Vinci were thought to have been dyslexic.
Dyslexia can be defined in the following way:
“Dyslexia is a learning difficulty (or difference) that primarily affects the skills involved in accurate and fluent word reading and spelling.
In simple terms, your child may exhibit signs such as these:
It is also good to check if there is a family history of dyslexia.
The British Dyslexia Association (BDA) Management Board adopted Sir Jim Rose’s definition with the addition of a further paragraph:
“In addition to these characteristics, the BDA acknowledges the visual processing difficulties that some individuals with dyslexia can experience, and points out that dyslexic readers can show a combination of abilities and difficulties that affect the learning process. Some also have strengths in other areas, such as design, problem solving, creative skills, interactive skills and oral skills.”
This month on our digital media channels at Bright Heart Education we’ve spent some time taking a closer look at what dyslexia means for students with special educational needs and offering tips on how to better support them and you, their parents. There are often a lot of myths associated with being dyslexic. We aimed to bust a few of them that you might find interesting in the infographic below:
Besides your unconditional support and loads of love and extra encouragement, one of the best ways to bolster your child’s learning journey with this particular challenge is to offer them additional assistance and increased levels of comfort through the help of a tutor.
At Bright Heart Education, we focus first and foremost on a heart-based approach. This means that our tutors seek to build rapport with students and connect with them in a way that makes them feel heard, understood and supported. This creates an optimal environment in which learning can take place.
From an educational perspective specific to students with dyslexia, our tutors can reduce the amount of reading required by summarising or using diagrams and video footage if appropriate. Necessary reading can be simplified using bullet points instead of long paragraphs.
Material can also be made more readable using different colour font or colour to highlight and using bold instead of italics. The amount of writing required can be reduced and oral discussion may be favoured instead. Written work will usually be reviewed for content rather than accuracy. For younger students our tutors will assist with phonics.
Students with dyslexia can tire in the lesson due to additional processing. Our tutors are aware of this and will take breaks or alter the pace when necessary.
Tutors can look at spell-checking, but not where it ruins the flow of the lesson. They may also provide written notes. The tutor will aim to provide instructions verbally and provide clear structure for the student’s tasks and offer support with these tasks.
Should you wish to give your child the gift of the Bright Heart experience, get in touch for an obligation-free exploratory session and together you will feel the difference we make in our students’ lives on a daily basis.
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