HOW TO HELP A CHILD WHO HAS 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
- Speech delay
- Unable to follow instructions
- 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;
- Multi-sensory introduction in decoding skills
- Individual guidance
- Being pulled out of class for extra help for more than once a week
- Being taught decoding skills
- 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;
- 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.
- 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.
- 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.
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