It is worrying when you hear that your child is experiencing difficulties at school. It’s hard for you as a parent and can be distressing for your child too. We all experience difficulties in life, but with the right building blocks and knowledge, progress can be made quickly and effectively, bringing your child back up to speed and enabling him/her to succeed.
Most schools work hard at promoting an inclusive environment, and will try their best to provide additional help and support; however, particularly in the state education system, time and resources are limited, and this – combined with a lack of specialist dyslexia training – can lead to individual difficulties not being recognised early enough, or insufficient/inappropriate support being provided.
Dyslexia Lincs can help by providing one-to-one specialist tuition for young people, with sessions precisely tailored to specific needs. Working closely with you and your child [and, if you wish, the child’s teacher/school too], we help build confidence and develop techniques that will help overcome the difficulties that dyslexia can bring.
Dyslexia Lincs is not an alternative to the excellent dyslexia support provided by many schools, but gives parents of dyslexic learners access to additional personalised services to supplement those provided in school.
The teacher has said my child is slow and can be lazy.
A child with dyslexia may take longer to process information and can sometimes appear as ‘lazy’ when trying to make sense of the printed word. Sometimes the amount of effort required to achieve what other children attain quite easily can affect a dyslexic child’s confidence and self-esteem. If a child is not given sufficient time to reflect and respond, s/he may lose the will to make the required amount of effort. Indeed, some children with dyslexia [whether diagnosed or not] may prefer to be regarded by their peers as lazy rather than having learning difficulties, so this is an area that needs sensitive handling. It is important that a child’s needs are assessed quickly when slow speeds of processing are observed.
Does my child have to have dyslexia to have extra help?
Absolutely not – many children benefit from extra literacy tuition. We also teach children with general learning difficulties who find reading and writing difficult, as well as those with speech and language difficulties.
We realise that the school day can seem very long to a child, especially those who struggle in almost every lesson. By breaking it down into lots of short games and exercises, the tuition session [usually 60 minutes, or 90 minutes if preferred] passes quickly. Each session builds on each pupil’s own success, along with the belief that every child has it within them to succeed at their own personal level. This allows them to begin to realise they can take small steps towards achieving their goals.
Can my child come for tuition during the day?
Although not widely known, parents are entirely within their legal rights to take a child out of school for individual tuition. However, please note that – at present – Dyslexia Lincs only provides tuition after school on week days after 4.30pm, at weekends, and during the school holiday periods.
Will the work you do with my child confuse him/her in school?
No, it is designed to help each pupil reach their potential over time, and to complement what a child is learning in school. We continually study to ensure we maintain our own competence and to ensure that we are fully up-to-date with the National Curriculum.
How much progress will my child make?
All pupils work and acquire knowledge at their own pace, which needs nurturing, not rushing. Small steps of progress in learning add up to large strides forward over time. Initial sessions will involve assessing your child’s individual learning style and profile of strengths and weaknesses, in order to inform an appropriate teaching programme. A child’s learning strengths will be used to address their learning weaknesses. Young people who see themselves as a ‘failure’ within school and with their classmates have often learnt avoidance techniques as coping strategies to get through the day. They usually take a little longer to realise for themselves that they can learn to read and write like everyone else. The pupil’s own attitude can ‘make or break’ progress, so we like to work with parents to ensure that together we can help a child progress towards success.
Do I need to buy anything to use in the lessons?
No, we will provide all the materials and exercises used for every session [including – with parent’s permission, of course – a drink and biscuit!].
Do I need to buy anything for my child’s homework?
No, we will provide exercise books, worksheets and writing utensils for ‘class’ and homework, as well as a folder to keep everything in. If appropriate, we’ll give some suggestions of websites that could be used at home, and/or books that will help your child.
Children with dyslexia or writing difficulties need to have neat, joined [cursive] handwriting and this will be a part of every session. It is important that children develop the automatic flow of writing which will help with their speed of writing and spelling.
Will you give homework?
Yes, most weeks. Homework will be a continuation of something covered in the lesson, as every pupil needs to consolidate their learning and this should be done with the maxim ‘little and often’. Each pupil will be shown the homework and should complete it before the next session, preferably with an adult’s support. Usually it will be daily reading of a few words or spellings to learn.
Don’t worry – we won’t give hours of homework that you will have to struggle to get your child to do. We give homework because a week is a long time for pupils with dyslexia to remember a new skill without any revision, and have found that – as pupils gain in confidence and see they can succeed – they usually want to practise their new skills!
Should I tell the school my child is having extra help?
This is entirely up to you. We welcome the opportunity to see any relevant school reports and assessments relating to your child, and will be happy to liaise with class teachers on your behalf if this is preferred.