Dyslexia PGCE Lead Lecture 2012
What Does It Mean? From the Greek: Dys = impairment Lexia = word
Within education the term specific learning difficulties is used to describe: • Dyslexia • Dyspraxia / Developmental Co-ordination Disorder • Dyscalculia – A difficulty with numbers • Dysgraphia – Difficulty expressing thoughts in writing
Dyslexia It is generally acknowledged that: • A person is born with it • It can be inherited • It is neurological Prevalence: current estimates suggest that between 3 and 10% of the population have dyslexia (Snowing, M. (2000 2nd ed) Dyslexia. Oxford: Blackwell)
British Dyslexia Association ‘A combination of abilities and difficulties which affect the learning process in one or more of the following; reading, spelling and writing. Accompanying weaknesses may be identified in areas of speed processing, short term memory, sequencing, auditory and/or visual perception, spoken language and motor skills. Its particulary related to mastering written language, which may include alphabetic, numeric and musical notation..’
For and against. “I understand that dyslexics can be given special help to make them learn, but I don’t see how they can ever really achieve much in school – school’s all so dependent on being able to read and write well…”
Dyslexia tends to run in families; it is known that there are several genes that contribute to a genetic risk of dyslexia. Brain scanning studies suggest that, in people with dyslexia, the connections between different language areas of the brain do not work as efficiently as they should. However, these differences are not linked to intelligence, and there is evidence that many people with dyslexia have strengths and abilities in tasks that involve creative and visually-based thinking.
Strengths • Inquiring • Problem solving • Generating ideas (verbally) • Analytical thinking • Creative thinking • Developing and finding strategies • Insightful thinking
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Worth noting… • b/d b d • y / h • p / q • M / W • n / u Problems with print : a / a g / g Comic Sans Sasson Infant
Late talking Difficulty with word naming Word mispronunciation Difficulty acquiring use of a new words Difficulty with sequencing activities Forgetfulness Speech difficulty Reversal of letters Difficulty remembering letters or sequence of the alphabet/numbers Family history Coordination difficulties Fine motor skills (tying shoelaces) Poor sense of rhyme and alliteration (onset and rime) Early Signs (pre-school and early years)
Cont’ • Slow at reacting to some tasks • Reluctance to concentrate • Confusing words which sound similar • Reluctance to go to school, signs of not enjoying school • Reluctance to read • Difficulty learning words and letters • Difficulty with phonics • Poor memory
Primary school After around two years: • Hesitant at reading • Poor word skills - difficulty decoding new words and breaking these words down into syllables • Poor knowledge of sounds of words • Difficulty recognising where in words particular sounds come from • Spelling difficulties • Substitution of words when reading, for example, bus for car • Confusing words which sound similar • Find it hard to learn to tell the time (divide clock face) • Mental arithmetic is particularly difficult, as are abstract concepts in maths.
Later stages of Primary school (leading into Secondary) • Behavioural difficulties • Frustration may show abilities in other areas of the curriculum apart form reading • Attention and concentration difficulties
Secondary school • Takes along time over homework • Misreads words • Relies on others to tell him/her information • Poor general knowledge • Takes longer than others on written tasks • May not write a lot in comparison to his/her own knowledge of the subject • Difficulty copying from books • May spend a great deal of time studying with little obvious benefit • May not finish class work or examinations because he/she runs out of time • Algebra is very difficult to remember and consequently learn.
Handout • Look at the work on the screen. • Imagine you were this child’s teacher what feedback would you be giving to the child?
Supporting children • Let the child select a book.. Doesn’t matter if it is easy …. The power of success • Use visuals • Miscue analysis • Describe pictures, speculate on what might happen next. • Listening games • Clap a simple rhythm • Specific reading programmes (reading recovery, etc) • Self-esteem enhancement activities • Share the reading • Sydney • Play word games: missing word (well known stories) • Use highlighters, or markers (post-its) to keep place in a text. • Don’t put children on the spot – have time to practise • Work in reading pairs • Larger print • Copy of reading on the board in front of them. • Fitness for purpose – what is the core learning objective?
Supporting children • Fitness for purpose – when coming up with ideas don’t worry about spelling • Cover look spell (emphasis on spelling aloud) • Colour in hot spots: want, they, colour, break the words up – belowbellow • Cursive script: see a pattern • Try to make up stories for frequently used words: because- big elephants can’talways use small entrances • Use tiles / magnetic letters / multi-sensory approach, kinaesthetic strategies • Display • Proofread work for children and identify frequent errors • Limit the list (focus on a few key common words) • Use a pocket dictionary or fold out list of words in a book (most common miss spelt words) • Teach spelling rules (careful, carefully, encourage children to come up with their own rules – necessary. • Use the ICT (it can help some older children to learn to touch type) (http://www.bbc.co.uk/schools/typing/) • Teach homophones and words that can be easily confused: practice and practise, rational, rationale, definitely, defiantly.
Supporting children • Word banks (with visuals) • The cartoon approach • Mind map • Use bullet points to get down key ideas rather than writing lengthy text • Heading and subheading (help with organising writing) • Thinking paper • Give the starting point as a place to work from • Writing partners • Fitness for purpose • Time to think • Time to plan • ICT • Tape recorder • Get ideas down first then proofread • Hand writing: Hand Gym (any number of handwriting programmes)
Memory and Organisation • Pupil participation (develop own strategies) • Invest time in remembering and organising (organise your way to success) • Colour code things (dividers and stationary, etc) • Have a place for everything (helps to stay organised and acts as a visual prompt if there is a place with nothing in it!!) • Keep instructions simple and visual • Use visual timetables • Break things down into smaller units • Make connections between different lessons to promote memory • Visual organisation cards (what you need that day, that lesson) • Visual sequence cards (remember the order of routines) • Memory cue sheets (pupil participation); remember to use for mental maths • Visually indicate what is coming up, visually summarise the key points at the end • See what others do, copy good tips
ICT • Language masters http://www.drakeed.com/ • Dictaphones • Reading pen • Voice recognition systems • Speech program • http://www.dyslexic.com/peoplesneeds.asp
“Dyslexia should rather be seen as an extraordinary dimension of otherwise ordinary life. It has an undeniable downside in terms of the extra effort invariably required, but a positive aspect as well in terms of creative ability. Above all, children with dyslexia more than others should not be rushed through their childhood. What they need, as one wise teacher once put, is “a good listening to”. Osmond, 1993p.122
Pupil Participation • Developing a positive sense of self • Developing an inquiring mind and learning new skills • Developing social competences and forging new relationships • Reflecting on your own learning • A chance to be active and creative
What makes a good learner? Metacognitive awareness • Many children with dyslexia don’t realise how others work things out, they are just aware that others can do things that they feel they can’t. • Work through the processes of learning as well as how to get to the end product.
Useful web pages http://www.dyslexiaaction.org.uk/ (previously known as the dyslexia Institute) http://www.bdadyslexia.org.uk/ www.senteacher.org www.enchantedlearning.com/Eisfor.shtml www.dyslexic.com
Marking for success • Two successes, two tips, one point to think about, one feed forward target • Marking: two different colours one for content, one for spelling and presentation Marking for Success: • In a paragraph tick all the words that are spelt correctly, express as a percentage. • In a word, tick all the correct letters, express as a percentage.
Relevant journals • Support for Learning • http://prism.talis.com/winchester-ac/items/76662?query=support+for+learning&resultsUri=items%3Fquery%3Dsupport%2Bfor%2Blearning • British Journal of Special Education • http://prism.talis.com/winchester-ac/items/54450?query=British+journal+of+special+education&resultsUri=items%3Fquery%3DBritish%2Bjournal%2Bof%2Bspecial%2Beducation%26offset%3D0&offset=0