Over the last two weeks, we’ve focused on what teachers and parents can do to help support the acquisition of reading in dyslexic students. It would be remiss not to discuss the emotional support that can be provided in school and at home. As always, these suggestions simply scratch the surface to give a starting point for support.
The fact is difficulties in learning to read can lead to children feeling embarrassed, frustrated, or acting out inappropriately to avoid reading tasks.
One of the first things we should do is recognize their strengths. Are they great at math? Sports? A scientist? A wonderful helper? Celebrate it all to help build up that self-esteem.
We can also build self-esteem by listening to their concerns, even (and especially) when the feelings come from a negative place. I’m sure we’ve all heard, “I can’t do it.” “This is too hard!” Those feelings, even though they are negative, are valid. So we need to accept them and offer support. “This is really hard, but let’s take our time and figure out how to work on it together” is a great response. This way, we’re not diminishing their feelings. We’re validating and offering a solution.
Something else that helps children is realizing that they are not alone. The International Dyslexia Foundation of Ontario has a lot of great ideas here, including videos and books that might help children of different ages feel inspired and more secure.
The last thing we can do is become familiar with best practices in literacy instruction to learn to support our kids in school and at home. If you’re reading this post now – you’re already in the right place, as we will keep sharing information and strategies every week!
Professional Development Opportunities
ASPDP Course: Teaching Vocabulary All Day, Every Day (One P-credit via DOE for additional $45; 15 CTLE Hours)
Saturday & Sunday, August 5 and 6, 2023
9:00am – 5:00pm
This workshop will address this simple view of reading by providing instructional strategies in three of the five pillars of reading: phonological awareness, phonics, and vocabulary because mastery of those pillars leads to proficiency in fluency and comprehension as well. It will concentrate on building a foundation of word recognition skills and enabling teachers and students to build a large and varied working vocabulary and strategies for acquiring new words. It will specifically address the needs of culturally and linguistically diverse students whose language comprehension may not match the demands of the school system. Those needs include activities that include and validate the students’ language and experience, as English is constantly being enriched by language and experiences that are not “standard.” Participants will embrace the idea of expanding vocabulary, not substituting one word for another. They will discuss and practice strategies for using students’ vocabulary to enhance their own.
Participants will learn a variety of quick and easy activities and drills to teach phonological awareness and phonics effectively and efficiently. They will also learn to teach vocabulary formally and informally, using morphology, syntax, and context clues, explicit instruction, and correct practice in targeted words, and by embedding vocabulary development into every activity during the school day.
Participants will also practice designing quick and effective assessments, which, instead of diagnosing students’ deficiencies, will reinforce skills taught and measure the impact of that instruction on students. To learn more and register, please click here!
IMSE’s Comprehensive Orton-Gillingham Plus
More dates are available at IMSE.com
Course Description: The IMSE Comprehensive Orton-Gillingham Plus Course and Program is 30 hours of a hands-on, interactive, and personalized class that provides a complete understanding of IMSE’s enhanced Orton-Gillingham method, the essential five components to literacy, and the tools necessary to apply it in the classroom. After participating in this accredited Structured Literacy course, teachers will understand the structure and foundation of the English language and the research behind the science of reading. Educators will have a basic knowledge of how to assess and teach students in all three tiers of RTI, as well as students with dyslexia. Participants will evaluate and teach students in phonological skills, phonics/word recognition, spelling, writing, fluency, vocabulary, and comprehension. This course includes an asynchronous component for fluency, vocabulary, and comprehension. The Comprehensive OG Plus course is appropriate for teachers whose students are emergent and beginning readers and readers struggling with word recognition. This course also includes an asynchronous component that shares research and strategies for teaching and assessing fluency, vocabulary, and comprehension. Upon completing this course, teachers can purchase two graduate credits.