Benefits of touch typing for a child with dyslexia

Benefits of touch typing for a child with dyslexia

Touch typing is a technique that creates a structure where you have to place different fingers on specific areas on your keyboard. You are using all your 10 fingers, and each one is in charge of a section or a column on the keyboard and it all starts with the home row.

Keyboard with speedskin covers

What is dyslexia?

Dyslexia is a common learning difficulty that mainly causes problems with reading, writing and spelling. It’s a specific learning difficulty, which means it causes problems with certain abilities used for learning, such as reading and writing and has nothing to do with intelligence. Dyslexia affects up to 10% of the population and may impact an individual’s ability to split words into their component sounds, or phonemes.

 

Significantly, individuals with dyslexia are perfectly capable of comprehending complicated ideas and should not be limited in their potential because of a misunderstanding of their abilities. Sometimes all a person needs is a little more time to process information, or a new approach to processing information, such as having to listen to an ebook rather than reading.

For many children and adults, developing good literacy skills involves overcoming the obstacles offered by specific learning impairments such as dyslexia. Dyslexia affects reading, writing, and spelling ability, but it can also lead to low self-esteem and a lack of confidence in the classroom.

 

Mnemonic devices help in the learning of challenging words’ spelling. Reading requires reduced cognitive work when high-frequency language is memorised. 

 

Also, dyslexics who have received touch typing education can reinforce phonics knowledge, employ muscle memory to remember word spellings, and facilitate the translation of concepts into written language.

This makes the process of writing less difficult and makes writing more seamless and effective.

-Typing vs writing contrast, MRI images Higashiyama et al, 2015, Japan, Cognitive NeuroScience PLOS

 

Why learning how to touch type is suitable for a child with dyslexia:

 

Ideas flow smoothly from the fingertips and onto the screen while touch typing. There isn’t any distraction generated by letter formation. Spelling errors may be easily made and corrected without the discomfort of erasure marks or hasty crossing out. Many children who have severe learning disabilities struggle with English spelling at first because of its extremely irregular nature and the number of sound mappings that may be applied to the same letter and letter combinations. 

 

Typing classes also expose students to numerous samples of written language, allowing them to become more comfortable with these words. It becomes simpler to spell and sight-read words after repeated exposure.

 

Children who learn to touch type via the type wiz programme have their phonics skills enhanced while simultaneously learning how to navigate a keyboard. This is due to the fact that letters and words are read aloud, presented on the screen, and typed by the pupil.

 

Producing work on a computer also frees the writer from attempting to process thoughts in a linear fashion. Dyslexic individuals in particular benefit from being able to capture thoughts and then structure them later on. It can even improve physical dexterity and actually help to handwrite.

 

    

 

Benefits of touch typing for someone who is dyslexic

  • Touch typing provides phonics training helpful to dyslexic children

Typing assists dyslexic children in breaking down words into smaller sounds. This can be really beneficial for reading and spelling. Touch typing allows a dyslexic child to develop sound-letter correlation. This teaches a child which letters create which sounds. Touch typing also eliminates the child’s need to make letters. This allows a child to concentrate more effectively on the sounds and the characters that correspond to them.

 

  • Improved productivity

Concentration improves and output increases. They will be able to ‘write’ faster, sometimes up to five times their normal writing speed. This will save them time and make learning so much easier and enjoyable

 

  • Less stressful in exams

It means that in class or in exams, children with dyslexia can get their thoughts down on paper more easily because they don’t have to worry about how to form a word on paper. They don’t have to hold a pen in the right way to make a mark and they don’t have to make the letters and words look neat or spaced out.

  • Touch typing employs multi-sensory learning and develops muscle memory.

Touch typing is multi-sensory as it links sight and hearing to touch. The tactile element of pressing the keys helps with remembering the sounds that make up tricky words. Touch typing also develops muscle memory which is very useful when learning letter patterns and spelling.

 

  • Typing at the speed of thought

Touch typing helps a child to think freely and type at the speed of thought as here is no distraction in having to look down at the keyboard to hunt and peck for the correct key. Making familiar patterns with the fingers starts to become automatic so that they begin to spell sight words and common words just by remembering the movement of their fingers on the keyboard.

  • Messy handwriting will be eliminated

Using a computer, individuals with dyslexia can type freely, without worrying about messy handwriting or errors. If they have learnt to touch-type properly, they will be typing accurately, barely having to hit the backspace key to correct their work. Another huge bonus, is when they are trying to stay focused on their thoughts.

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  • Increased confidence

There are so many reasons why touch typing is the right choice for children with dyslexia. It helps them to transform their thoughts and ideas freely into words, giving them the confidence and ability to communicate effectively.

 

 

Why not get your child to try out our free trial assessment touch typing course where you’ll gain valuable insights into your child’s current typing accuracy and word per min speed. 

There is no obligation to continue on and you will receive a report which will outline what your child’s typing speed will be in their first six months of attending a Searsol typing centre.

Click here https://searsol.com/find-centers/?search

 

Why should you learn how to touch type?

Why should you learn how to touch type?

Touch typing is a technique that creates a structure where you have to place different fingers on specific areas on your keyboard. You are using all your 10 fingers, and each one is in charge of a section or a column on the keyboard and it all starts with the home row.

Touch typing
Touch typing

Typing is something that is becoming more and more prominent nowadays and remains a foundational life skill so getting your child to learn this skill is extremely necessary and will be of benefit to them for the entirety of their life. It can not only help them with their school work but can also set them up with an advantage in later life when it comes to exploring job opportunities. Many jobs in the modern world of work now require quick typing skills, but with advances in technology that’s set to become even more important.

 

Future job benefits from learning how to type

Being able to type quickly and precisely will give you a significant advantage when applying for jobs. Employers like to know that their employees can type properly because it will increase their productivity and enhance the accuracy of their work. 

 

Every day, a large percentage of us use a computer. It’s not just secretarial and administrative workers who need keyboarding skills in the workplace anymore. Typing is as fundamental to the majority of job seekers as the use of Word or being able to navigate the internet has become a necessity for education and work purposes. This is because mostly everyone sends emails, which would include artists, journalists, teachers, and sales representatives, or completes team projects. If the record-keeping and communication aspects of your job take you several hours, you may not be as competitive as the next candidate applying for the position.

 

With advances in technology, the rise of robotics, and an ever-changing job market, the ability to touch type is going to become even more important for future careers. Especially currently, given the prevalence of computers in the business world, a typing speed of 50 words per minute is often regarded as the basic minimum for employees to accomplish in order to be considered efficient.

Touch typing
Touch typing

 

Why is learning how to touch type beneficial for children?

 

Touch typing aids your child to type faster as well as accurately, without having to look at the keyboard every now and then. Touch typing becomes unconscious after a while, allowing your child to be more creative. Undoubtedly a  child can learn faster than an adult. As a result, the earlier they learn, the better. Attempting to learn from a young age will be extremely beneficial as you progress through school, college, and beyond.

 

Children who touch type can work a lot more quickly as they don’t need to look down at their fingers to look for the correct keys. They will spend less time in front of the computer screen in their free time, doing homework.

They can focus on getting their ideas down rather than spending too much time looking for the right keys to press. This makes drafting and editing easier as ideas can be deleted and changed without messy crossing out. It also assists to reduce the risk of repetitive strain injury as pressure is spread out over all their fingers and good posture is encouraged. A touch typist can type faster and produce work more quickly.

 

John Sutherland, professor of English literature at University College, said, ‘You want to put wings on the heels of your children? Teach them to touch-type. They’ll bless you for it.’ Learning to type from a young age can help with spelling because it uses muscle memory to learn word patterns rather than trying to remember spellings by sheer repetition. The majority of assignments, projects, and essays in a secondary school as a whole are expected to be typed. Students who begin to touch type can save a significant amount of time when preparing assignments. Furthermore, knowing how to touch-type doesn’t just affect the speed that children work at, but the quality of their work too. It allows thoughts to be captured quicker, so they’re less likely to forget a great idea as it’s an unconscious practice.


Learning to type can also benefit children with specific learning disabilities such as ADHD, dysgraphia, and dyslexia, who frequently struggle to write by hand. A learning disability, which is not a reflection of a child’s intelligence, will frequently hold a child back in the classroom if they feel nervous, embarrassed, as well as frustrated. Learning to type and then use the keyboard efficiently could be useful in situations like this.

 

For example, typing can help children with ADHD who might otherwise produce messy written work due to a lack of focused attention when writing by hand. Those children with dysgraphia can find it painful to hold a pencil which makes it a struggle to compose hand-written work. They will almost always produce better-written work when typing on a computer keyboard.

With dyslexia, typing can help children to break words up into component sounds. The tactile element required with pressing buttons on a keyboard can help them to manage trickier words and they will find it easier than writing by hand

Touch typing
Touch typing

Typing can help to handwrite as fingers are strengthened and have more dexterity. Typing is a life skill and may seem challenging to master but children learn at different paces.

WPM speed requirement for exams 

The great thing about typing is that not only can it help you speed up your work output, but it is also so much easier to do than writing. Writing requires the pen to be held with one hand and the other hand to guide the working copy or paper, but typing involves simply placing your finger on the keyboard and pressing letters as needed.

Trying to write properly also forces your attention onto the very act of writing, with the result that all you are thinking about is the very act of forming words. Typing instead frees you up from having to worry about shaping letters and moving your hand along a page, so that you can think creatively about the content of what you are writing.

Typing has countless other advantages – it is convenient, it makes it easy to share documents, you can print up your work and it also looks so much better than written work.

As previously stated, starting to learn to type absolutely depends on muscle memory (which is used in sports) rather than memory. Typing quickly is also advantageous for examinations where children may use a laptop. Since errors can be deleted when learning to type, there is less emphasis on neatness, pencil grip, and mistakes.

In terms of typing speeds for children, at the primary school level, a typing speed of 10 wpm is generally regarded as sufficient in order for students to be able to present their work without errors. As children grow older and move to higher grades, faster speeds are recommended in order to keep up with the pace and volume of their educational work. Therefore touch typing is vital. Generally, a typing speed of around 20-25wpm is recommended after Junior Cert, rising to 30 wpm and above at Leaving Cert level. The Department. of Education recommends that your child has a typing speed of 25 words per minute if they are going to use a laptop for typing out their exams.

Word per minute
WPM

Students who do not learn proper touch typing and become self-taught two-finger typists will also find they fall behind as time goes on because these so-called Hunt and Peck typists are expected to achieve a maximum speed of just 30wpm under this method. When you consider that a typing speed of 45wpm and higher is required as a basic skill in many jobs and that an average professional typist types at up to 80wpm, you can see just how useful proper touch typing proves in the real world.

Given that a speaking pace of between 150-160wpm is the rate at which a person can be comfortably heard and understood by an audience and that conversational English is spoken at around 110-150wpm, typing at 80 wpm or more should enable you to catch every second word of what your teacher or lecturer says in school or college. Think how useful this would prove for your study notes!

The reality is that once your touch-type training really kicks in, the whole system clicks into place until, suddenly, you find yourself typing faster and faster, so fast you can hardly keep up! Naturally, the more time you practice touch-typing, the quicker your typing speed becomes. Eventually, you will achieve a maximum typing speed to suit you and your work so that whenever you have to type anything, you will be able to do so at a high speed.

Conclusion

Improving your typing skills is certain to make a person more confident working with computers and more likely to take full advantage of what the device can offer. Are you in search of a course or a productive app to achieve your goal of typing fast like a pro without looking, consider using https://searsol.com/

New Searsol touch typing centre starting in April 2022 in Cabinteely, Dublin 18

Typing classes Cabinteely
Speedskin covers to stop your child from looking down at the keyboard!

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

New Searsol typing classes starting in Cabinteely, Dublin 18.

 

Searsol is starting a new after-school touch-typing class in Cabinteely Community School in Cabinteely starting on Tuesday the 26th of April 2022 at 4 or 5 pm.

 

Our typing classes will be starting on the 26th of April 2022 in Cabinteely Community School and will take place each Wednesday at 4 or 5 pm. Searsol is currently offering a free introductory first session trial of Searsol’s after-school typing courses for any child who is eight years old or older that may be interested in trying out our touch typing course.

Our typing course is specifically designed to develop typing skills for children. Searsol has provided after-school typing courses for children since 2008. We have a high success rate of students that have successfully learned how to touch type. During the course, the student will learn how to touch type correctly assisted by a qualified tutor. We use our own specially designed typing software which is only available through our centre.

This course is suitable for children who want to learn how to type correctly. We work with children with learning differences like Dyslexia or Dyspraxia or children with handwriting problems or have gained an exemption to use a laptop for exams. To book your free trial place you can contact Searsol on 01-6303384 or book a free trial at our Cabinteely centre by click here

Searsol Computer Camps 2022 – children and teenagers – Dundrum, Malahide and Lucan

Searsol computer Camps for children and teenagers run over Easter and the month of July 2022 in Dublin – Dundrum, Malahide and Lucan.

Looking for something productive for your child or teen to do over Easter or Summer? Why not enroll them in our Searsol computer skills camps where they will learn a range of computer skills which will help them through school and beyond.  The camps are taking place in the following locations this year:

There are two levels available to book on our website at: searsolcomputercamps.com/computercamps

Level 1 – children up to the age of 12

Level 2 – teenage computer camps

Level 1 Computer course is suitable for 8 – 12 years old (Primary school) and offers the following:

Computer Camp – Level 1 – 8 -10-year-olds

First Hour – Touch Typing

Typewiz typing tutor – designed specifically for children.

Touch Typing – the first hour of the course is dedicated to learning how to touch type. Using our typing tutor Typewiz. Your child will be shown how to type correctly using their eight fingers. Helping them to improve their typing skills and saving them time doing their homework/projects for schools

Second Hour – Email / Word Processing / Presentation Slides

Email – Learn how to compose email reply, forward

Email fundamentals – Compose, reply, forward messages, and add attachments. Learn how to send an email and become confident about how to use email.

Create word processing documents

Word Processing – introduction to word processing.  Your child will learn how to use word processing to create documents. They will learn how to format, insert images, change fonts and sizes. Giving them the confidence to use word processing to create documents for school homework and projects.

Create presentation slides similar to PowerPoint

Presentation slides – Your child will learn how to create presentation slides similar to PowerPoint. They will learn how to insert images, add animation, insert video, formatting. This will give them the knowledge to create slides for classroom presentations.

Third Hour – Fun Stuff – Design / Create / Draw and Animate

In the last how your Child will get to do the following:

  • Design their online comic book.
  • Creating their own avatar or character
  • Design and print birthday cards.
  • Download images from Google images
  • Creating their own Picture collages.
  • Draw and edit their own images.
  • Uploading, editing, and cropping pictures.
  • Image design
  • Introduction to coding
    And much more…
Create birthday cards
Comic strips
Design and Create picture collages

Level 2 Computer course is suitable for Teenagers and offers the following:

Teenager computer Camp – level 2

First Hour – Touch Typing

Your teen will learn how to touch-type using our Typewiz typing tutor. Specifically designed for children to learn how to type fast and effectively.

Second Hour – Email / Word Processing / Presentation Slides / Spreadsheets

Email fundamentals – setting up and using email correctly. Compose, reply, forward messages and add attachments. Sending business emails.

Word Processing – Intermediate word exercises, formatting creating tables, borders, etc.

Presentation slides – create, animate, insert images, format, insert tables, add videos.

Spreadsheet – creating, add function, minus function, sum function.

Third Hour – Fun Stuff – Design / Create / Draw and Animate

In the last how your Teen will get to do the following:

  • Creating their own online comic book.
  • Design their own avatar and character
  • Download images from google images
  • Creating their own Picture collages.
  • Draw and edit your own images.
  • Uploading, editing and cropping pictures.
  • Image design
  • Coding
  • And much more…

To book a place on the course go to https://searsolcomputercamps.com/computercamps

Why is it better for your child to learn how to type than to write?

Why is it better for your child to learn how to type than to write?

Before we go into detail as to why it is better for your child for them to type than to write, it must be first made clear that writing is not a bad thing for your child and we do encourage that if they can pick being able to write easy, then they should continue to write as well as learning the skill of typing. Typing is something which is becoming more and more prominent nowadays so getting your child to learn this skill is extremely necessary and will be of benefit to them for the entirety of their life.

Typing

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Firstly, let’s look at touch typing. Touch-typing is something which is of benefit to everyone, not only people who may struggle to write properly. When being able to touch type not only will you be able to type faster, but you will be able to do this without the need of having to look at the screen on the computer. Things like transcribing are also made a whole lot easier, due to the fact that when you’re touch-typing your eyes can stay on the paper and you can ensure that your figures will be able to do the job when typing.

 

Now let’s look at reasons why touch typing is a skill worth in.

 

Let’s look at a few of the key reasons as to why touch typing is such an important skill:

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Comfort will improve:  when a child starts to learn how to touch type, they will then become much more comfortable with how their hands are operating when they are typing. This is because when you can have your hands centered on the keyboard it will allow you to place your fingers more evenly across the keyboard.

 

Fewer mistakes made: with touch typing, this will be more effective than say a hunt and peck type method as it will lead to less errors by the individual being made. Now of course at first, mistakes will obviously be made when you are trying to get used to aligning your fingers in the correct position on the keyboard and keeping your eyes fixated to the screen, but once you are used to this method it will become much easier to adjust any errors as you will be already looking at the screen to notice the mistake made.

 

Typing speed increases: as touched upon on the previous point, keeping your eyes off the keyboard and fixated on the screen will give you a huge boost in your ability to type faster. Think about note-taking in the classroom or even at work. It often happens that notes are being taken at such a quick rate that you will struggle to be able to take down all the necessary information that is being said, and this can lead to crucial bits of information not being taken down by the individual. What touch typing does is not necessarily ensure that every single bit of note-taking will be taken down but it will vastly improve the speed in which a person can do this. Mistakes may be made along the way but at least you will have the bulk of what is being said down and you can adjust and fix this information later.

 

 

 

 

Now let’s look at an example of a touching typing course which is known as Typewiz. Typewiz touch typing lessons are designed in a way to be short and encourage the child to complete their next lesson by achieving rewards and moving up leaderboards. Below is a little deeper insight into why you should get your child started with Typewiz.

Typewiz typing tutor

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Typing games: Typewiz has fun and interactive games for your child to enjoy. Typewiz allows your child to compete with kids in their age range and they can try improving by moving up leaderboards. A virtual coin is used for each game and will measure your child’s performance of how they’re getting on in the course, which will then motivate them to complete exercises as fast and efficiently as possible.

–          Avatar rewards: Typewiz allows your child to earn an avatar as they complete each lesson, and these include many cool-looking avatars which will motivate the child to focus and do the best they can in order to achieve their desired avatar.

–          Modular design: the modular design which Typewiz provides is something that is easy on the eye for children and really creates an amazing environment for children to learn how to touch type.

–          Reporting: This is of huge benefit to parents of the children, as Typewiz offers a report showing how your child is getting on and progressing along throughout the duration of the course. The report will give you key information such as exercises your child has completed, average accuracy, highest score, and much, much more. This information can be shown weekly, over the last 6 months, the past year, or all the time. Typewiz will show you both accuracy and words per minute graphs in the report, so it can easily be available to view and print off either.

 

 

Now after looking at an example of a touch typing game and why it would be of benefit to your child, it is clear that typing is something which is essential to learn at an early age and would of be of great use to any young person. In school writing is of course still used for exams and note-taking by students, however with colleges now really putting emphasis on doing exams from home on computers due to the pandemic we find ourselves in, it would not be of any surprise if this was to be the way forward for learning in the near future.

Typewiz Free trial

 

 

Does your child have poor handwriting speed? How can typing help?

Does your child have poor handwriting speed? How can typing help?

 

 

 

 

 

 

As children growing up, one of the first skills we are thought to do when in school is being able to write properly. It usually begins with kids being taught how to write letters or shapes individually and teaching the child what the correct form to use when they are writing. Some children pick up this skill quickly at a young age, whereas others may tend to struggle greatly with this and begin to fall behind people their age. This tends to pose the question to parents about how they go about rectifying this issue that they are having with their child’s handwriting issues. This is where the ability to have your child learn how to type at a young age will give endless benefits to them which we will go further into below.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Learning to touch type – you may be wondering what touch-typing means. What’s the difference between regular typing and touch typing? Well, touch typing is where one types but without looking at the keyboard. By doing this you will constantly be staring at your screen so that if you keep making mistakes you will be able to notice them quicker than say if you were constantly looking down at your keyboard. The benefits of being able to touch-type properly are endless.

  Touch typing, if learnt as young as possible, will be of massive benefit to an individual as it will become a long-term skill, whether at home, school, college, or even in the work environment.

  Touch typing helps your child to type faster as well as more accurately, without having to look at the keyboard every now and then.

  Once your child is touch typing, this will become an unconscious action to them, which will then allow them to become more creative.

  Learning how to type at a young age will increase the likelihood of the child developing less bad habits, than if we were to start learning this at an older age.

  Touch typing helps children that have dyslexia, as some children who are dyslexic will find it easier to touch type rather than handwrite. This is due to the tactile element of pressing the keyboard is able to help with being able to manage difficult words.

  Drafting and editing can be made easier for children by touch typing as you can play around with your work by being able to move paragraphs, delete parts of the text that are no longer needed which is something that one does not have the luxury of doing if they are handwriting.

  By being able to successfully touch-type, will then allow for the person to really focus on their content. While touch typing will greatly enhance the ability for a child to be able to type at a fast pace it will also improve the quality of their work too. And because of this, they will be able to put their main focus into the quality of the content which they are producing.

 

 

 

 

 

Searsol  – Searsol was formed back in 2007 and has been teaching children how to be able to touch type properly. Previously we really delved into what are the benefits of a child being able to touch type, and one should look no further than Typewiz if they want to get their child learning how to perfect this skill in a fun and interactive way. Typewiz touch typing lessons are designed in a way to be short and encourage the child to complete their next lesson by achieving rewards and moving up leaderboards. Below is a little deeper insight into why you should get your child started with Typewiz.

  Typing games: Typewiz has fun and interactive games for your child to enjoy. Typewiz allows your child to compete with kids in their age range and they can try improving by moving up leaderboards. A virtual coin is used for each game and will measure your child’s performance of how they’re getting on in the course, which will then motivate them to complete exercises as fast and efficiently as possible.

  Avatar rewards: Typewiz allows your child to earn an avatar as they complete each lesson, and these include many cool looking avatars that will motivate the child to focus and do the best they can in order to achieve their desired avatar.

  Modular design: the modular design which Typewiz provides is something that is easy on the eye for children and really creates an amazing environment for children to learn how to touch type.

  Reporting: This is of huge benefit to parents of the children, as Typewiz offers a report showing how your child is getting on and progressing along throughout the duration of the course. The report will give you key information such as exercises your child has completed, average accuracy, highest score and much, much more. This information can be shown weekly, over the last 6 months, the past year or all the time. Typewiz will show you both accuracy and words per minute graphs in the report, so it can easily be available to view and print off either.

 

 

Overall you can see that there are endless benefits when it comes to a child being able to learn how to be able to type at a young age if they are struggling with their handwriting. The aim of this blog was really to give you an insight into not only all of the benefits that come along with your child being able to type properly but also the fun that can be had along the way in their learning process and we see this through games like Typewiz. Typing is something which is a vital skill for all ages nowadays and as time goes on the importance of being able to type will not become less vital.

 

 

How to help a child who has dyslexia

 

 

 

HOW TO HELP A CHILD WHO HAS DYSLEXIA

 

About dyslexia:

Firstly, it is key to gain an understanding of what dyslexia really is. Dyslexia can be seen as a learning disorder that involves difficulty with reading due to problems of identifying speech sounds and learning how they relate to letters and words, which is known as decoding. Dyslexia is something that is more common than one may think as it affects 10% of the population of Ireland, around 450,000 people.

An interesting statistic relating to children in the classroom shows that on average three children in every classroom will have dyslexia. When looking at how dyslexic difficulties occur, it goes on a continuum from mild to severe. It is known that people who are dyslexic may experience a greater degree of stress and frustration when learning, which will then relate in a higher case of anxiety most particularly in relation to literacy acquisition.

It is vital that a child’s needs are identified as young and early as possible so that the relative gap between pupils with dyslexia and their peers don’t grow over time. Support at any age will be of benefit to this learning difficulty, of course, however, the earlier this can be identified the better it is for the person having difficulties. When it comes to identifying the signs that your child may be dyslexic, some of these points may help you know;

 Struggle to learn simple rhymes

  1. Speech delay
  2. Unable to follow instructions
  3. Are unable to tell left from right 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Is dyslexia something that is curable?

Dyslexia is something that isn’t necessarily an illness but is something that a person will have throughout their entire life? However, by taking the appropriate measures towards understanding the difficulties and challenges are that come with having dyslexia it can then be made much easier to live with. When really delving into dyslexia and its impact it will have on a person, it is something that is a brain-based issue with language.

That is why kids will have issues with being able to work with the sounds of language. It’s important to remember that reading issues may still exist for children with dyslexia even after they have been able to learn and read properly. The ability for a child to read that has dyslexia is more so a mechanical one. This is why children which have dyslexia will best be able to learn with reading programs that are systematic ones and take an explicit multisensory approach to. By doing this it will enhance the likelihood of a child to be able to successfully identify words.  

Methods to help your child live with dyslexia: The previous point leads nicely into how you can go about having your child be able to live with dyslexia. If your kid was to be diagnosed with dyslexia, beware that this does not mean that your child will never be able to read properly, that’s why these methods below will go a long way to helping your child read to the fullest of their potential;

  1. Multi-sensory introduction in decoding skills
  2. Individual guidance
  3. Being pulled out of class for extra help for more than once a week
  4. Being taught decoding skills
  5. Children are taught comprehension skills, in order to help them understand what they are reading. 

 We at Searsol put great emphasis on the fact that one of the most important ways for a child to be helped with their dyslexia is to make them feel comfortable when they are trying to read or type.  Being able to create games where children can gain accomplishments and rewards can greatly enhance a child’s experience and willingness to learn also.

How to help a child when stuck at home:

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

With covid being so prominent in our lives today, this means that schools are being shut for long periods of time and this is something which may be having a massively detrimental effect on your child’s ability to learn and improve in school. These children are losing invaluable time when it comes to their education so it is vital that these children are able to stay productive at home and continue to learn along the way. There are endless ways in which you as a parent can go about helping your child to help your child who has dyslexia at home;

 

  1. Encourage children to read: The importance of having your child be able to read is one which can go under the radar but this is vital if you want your child to improve with their learning abilities. Not only this but it is also important to challenge your child by questioning them on what they read so that you know that their reading is being of actual benefit to them.
  2. Have the child work independently: In the last point we talked about the importance of you as a parent posing questions to your child. You should also encourage your child to work in an independent manner to ask you questions about if they are doing their work right so that you can then give them advice on whether they are right or wrong with what they are doing.
  3. Give praise to boost morale: With children who have dyslexia, they are just like the rest of us people and they will tend to thrive with confidence and self-esteem when they are being praised for the work they have done. You as a parent should be very encouraging towards your child when they are learning, beware not to always praise and prepare to criticise when appropriate, but most importantly act in a positive manner when helping your child.

Encourage touch typing:

The ability for a child being able to touch type is one that can be of huge benefit to a child who is dyslexic. We at Searsol encourage children to learn to touch type from a young age as it is a skill that can be long term at home, school, college and even in the work environment when your child grows older. The goal of touch typing is to help one type faster as well as accurately, without having to look at their keyboard all the time. Once your child is successfully able to touch type, they will then be typing in an unconscious manner which will allow your child to become more creative.

Learn how to type
Learn how to type at any of Searsol Centres

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

If you’re interested in a free trial at any of our centres in Dublin or Cork. Click on our free trial on searsol.com

 

 

What can you do to overcome your child’s poor handwriting?

Poor handwriting

Poor handwriting

What can you do to overcome your child’s poor handwriting?

 

Does your child have poor handwriting and is struggling to complete their homework? Does your child take a long time for them to do their homework? Is the quality of the handwriting produced by your child legible? What can you do to improve this situation for your child? Do you want a life that is free from the stress and anxiety of trying to get them to complete their homework? 

 

Definition of poor handwriting:

First off let’s define what poor handwriting is. According to Chivers (1999) – poor handwriting is a deficiency in the ability to write, primarily handwriting, but also coherence. Poor handwriting is a transcription disability, meaning that it is a writing disorder associated with impaired handwriting, orthographic coding (orthography, the storing process of written words and processing the letters in those words), and finger sequencing (the movement of muscles required to write).

 

Causes of poor handwriting

 

The main two causes of poor handwriting are deficiencies in balance sense or body awareness.   

Balance sense

Balance sense
Balance sense

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

The balance sense is located in our inner ear.  Children who have experienced any of the following are more likely to have difficulties with their balance sense:

  • chronic ear infections
  • premature birth
  • neglect and trauma in infancy
  • other neurological conditions such as autism

Child jumping

When this sense is not developed properly, children are likely to have difficulty with balance, jumping, hopping, skipping, sitting still, concentration, managing fear or anxiety and learning to read or poor handwriting skills.

 

Body Awareness

body awareness

This sense is located in the muscles and joints all over our body and is often called the body awareness sense as it tells our brain where our body is in relation to itself and other things.

 

Children with poor body awareness often present with the following conditions:

  • appear clumsy
  • are rough
  • break things
  • bump into things
  • unable to sit still for long periods of time
  • poor concentration.
  • difficulty with reading 
  • Poor handwriting skills

 

These two senses (balance and body)  are the building blocks for all other skills. It doesn’t matter how much we practice with our child on handwriting skills, it won’t improve because of deficiency in their balance and body senses.

 

Your child may have a good pencil grasp and lovely letter formation but if they don’t have a functioning balance sense then their writing is likely to be much slower, messy, difficult to read than other children.

How do you improve your child’s poor handwriting skills?

You can improve your child with poor handwriting skills by trying the following:

 

Strengthen Fine Motor Skills

scissors cutting

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Increasing hand strength and finger dexterity can help your child get more control over the pen and improve their handwriting.  Encourage your child on tasks like cutting with scissors, using a screwdriver, sewing or knitting.

 

Pencil Grip

Pencil grip
Pencil grip

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

A good grip could help reduce fatigue and prevent muscle cramps, which may help to improve handwriting.

 

Upper Body strength

 

 

 

 

 

Encourage your child to build upper body strength through sports,  swimming and gym weights. These will help strengthen and stabilise the shoulder muscles to free up the hand muscles for handwriting.

 

Frequent Breaks

Take a break
Take a break

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

If your child tires easily or becomes distracted, then let them have a quick break as opposed to continuing on and their handwriting deteriorates. 

 

Pick your battles

Pick your battles

Pick your battles

 

Decide which subjects require good handwriting and which subjects you can get away with poor handwriting. 

 

Typing skills

Typewiz.com – be a wiz at typing!

 

 

 

 

 

 

Instead of writing out all their homework. Why not get them to type it out using a laptop or tablet? By typing out their homework, it helps not only to be able to read the text they produce but also allows you to review the document and make changes if required. By learning how to type correctly, your child overcomes poor handwriting and uses assistive technology to their advantage. 

If you want your child to learn how to type at one of our centres, you can book a free trial assessment at https://searsol.com/find-centers/

How long does it take to learn to touch type?

How long does it take to learn to touch-type?

It’s a question that we have been asked several times before and to be honest it’s a difficult one to answer.

Definition of Touch Typing:

Touch typing is the ability to type without looking down at the keyboard. A person who can touch-type will know all the letters location on the keyboard through muscle memory. The term is often used to refer to a specific form of touch typing that involves placing the eight fingers in a horizontal row along the middle of the keyboard

Home Keys

Touch typing is a skill that needs to be learned and it becomes better as you practice using the correct technique. The correct technique is to place your fingers on the home keys, left hand fingers should start with the little resting on the A button and the main index finger on the F button on the keyboard. The right-hand fingers should start with the index finger on the J button and the little finger on the semicolon button (;). If you are interested in learning how to touch type, check out our new typing tutor Typewiz which is specifically aimed at teaching children how to touch type in a fun and interactive way. Also, see our youtube video below on How to touch type using Typewiz which explains the correct procedure to learn how to touch type using our typing tutor Typewiz.

 

A range of factors come into play in deciding how long it will take to learn how to touch type.

Factors to consider are the concentration, motivation, age of the student, and if the student has any learning difficulties.

Concentration:

If a student has poor or weak concentration, then it will take them a lot longer to learn how to touch type. As touch typing requires a lot of concentration and persistence in learning where the keys are on the keyboard.

Motivation:

If a student is not motivated to learn touch typing, then, unfortunately, they will never learn how to touch type. If they don’t see the benefits of touch typing and rather do it their own way then a student will never learn to touch type correctly and will revert to their own ways (Hunt and Peck method).

Age:

The younger the student age the longer they will take to learn how to touch type. At Searsol, we believe the best age start to touch type is from the age of eight. We feel any younger than eight years old, a student is just not ready to learn to touch type successfully due to the size of their hands and lack of concentration.

Learning difference:

If a student has a learning difficulty such as dyslexia, dyspraxia (DCD), dysgraphia, then this student will take longer to learn how to touch type compared to a student that doesn’t have these learning difficulties. We feel for these students classroom learning is the best solution for a child that has learning differences. At Searsol, we offer a free trial for students who want to experience our classroom learning. A free trial is available by clicking on the following link (Ireland only). We also offer a free seven-day trial online click on the following link

 

How long does it take to learn how to touch-typing?

So going back to the question, how long does it take to learn to touch type. An average student without learning differences would learn to touch type within eight to ten hours. They might be touch typing at a very slow speed (8 – 15  words per minute).

Bronze standard – 15 words per minute

 

A student who attains 15 words per minute or greater will be rewarded with our bronze badge on Typewiz.  This would take approximately 10 hours to achieve for the average student doing the Typewiz course. 

Silver standard – 25 words per minute

The next level on Typewiz is our silver badge which is 25 words or greater. An average student would need to do around 30 hours on Typewiz to get to this level.

Gold standard – 40 words per minute

Forty words per minute is where a student can touch type faster than they can write which is an amazing achievement! It is the gold standard on Typewiz and for most students very difficult to achieve. It requires a student to put in an additional forty hours of practice using Typwiz. 

If a student achieves the gold badge on Typewiz. Then this is a great advantage to have for a student, as they progress through secondary school, third level and onto work. Typing faster than writing without ever having to look down at the keyboard!

Typewiz.com – a new innovative way to learn how to touch type!

Typewiz online typing tutor for kids

 

Our new typing tutor typewiz.com  is now available to any student that wants to learn how to touch type.

  • Typewiz is a new fun and interactive way to learn to touch type.
  • Students get to select different avatars as they progress up the lessons.
  • Students can earn coins based on their performance on the course.
  • Coins can then be used in our games arcade where each coin spent allows the student to access one game.
  • Students can earn different word-per-minute badges (Bronze, Silver, or Gold) as they become faster at typing.
  • Students can earn lesson badges as they progress up the lessons.
  • Realistic hands with a green finger show the user what keyboard button to press.
  • Graphs of all previous percentage scores with Words Per Minute (WPM) are available to access for the student at all times.
  • Typewiz is a self-paced course that allows students to work at their own pace in a classroom environment or at home.
  • Typewiz is also available through our Searsol centres monitored by our professional Searsol tutors (Ireland only). 

If you are interested in finding out more information about Typewiz. Visit our website at www.typewiz.com  Free seven-day trial available.