In my previous blogs I have been discussing the specific types of learning disabilities and what schools should be doing to accommodate the student that has them. I have touched on dysgraphia and dyscalculia. Today I want to talk about school accommodations for the student with dyslexia, perhaps the most well known of the types of learning disabilities. If you read another blog, written by Kristyn, in the special needs parenting section, you can get a brief overview of what dyslexia is. My job is to inform you of some of the expectations of the school for a child with dyslexia.
When a child is diagnosed with dyslexia, you should expect the school to do some of the following:
*See it, Say it, Write it all at the same time. This strategy worked well for my students with dyslexia. They see the word, say it and write it as they are saying it and seeing it.
*Instructions and lessons should follow an order that is understandable to the students, jumping back and forth from one topic to another may cause confusion. A teacher should make sense and go in a distinct order when teaching
*Direct instruction by teachers
*Use of a tape recorder to record notes, rather than writing
*Directions that are broken down into smaller steps
*Reading guides that are pre-made by the teacher
*Many dyslexic students are visual and tactile learners, teachers should try to teach with an overhead often so students can see the content and offer hands-on projects for children as much as possible
*Graphic organizers should be utilized as often as possible
*Students should sit in close proximity to the teacher
*Allow extra time for tests and allow for tests in other curricular areas (social studies, science) to be read to the student
*Monitor use of daily planner; help with filling it out
*Students with dyslexia may be allowed to orally respond to a question that would normally need to be written
*Limit note taking, have children with dyslexia fill out an outline during note taking times
*Peer tutor or homework buddy as necessary
Accommodations are mandatory for a child with dyslexia. Without them, the child may not be learning up to his or her full potential.