(Adopted from the Rose Report 2009)
Dyslexia is a learning difficulty that primarily affects the skills involved in accurate and fluent word reading and spelling. Characteristic features of Dyslexia are difficulties in phonological awareness, verbal memory and verbal processing speed. Dyslexia occurs across all intellectual abilities. As each person is unique so is everyone’s experience of dyslexia. It can range from mild to severe and it can co-occur with other learning difficulties. It usually runs in families and is a life-long condition.
It is important to remember there are positives to thinking differently. Many dyslexic people show strengths in areas such as reasoning and in visual and creative fields.
Signs of Dyslexia
There is a common misconception that dyslexia just affect the ability to read and write, In fact dyslexia can have an effect on organisation, coordination and memory.
General signs to look for:
- ‘Spiky’ profile, child has strong ability alongside areas of weakness
- Speed of processing: slow spoken and/or written language
- Poor concentration
- Difficulty following instructions
- Forgetting words
Signs in written work:
- Poor standard of work compared to verbal ability
- Produces messy work with lots of crossing out
- Confused by letters which look similar
- Poor handwriting, letter reversal and badly formed letters
- Spelling a word different ways in one piece of writing
- Badly set out written work
- Phonetic and bizarre spelling that is not age/ability appropriate
Signs in reading:
- Slow reading progress
- Finds it difficult to blend letters together
- Difficulty establishing syllable division or knowing the beginnings and endings of words
- Unusual pronunciation of words
- No expression in reading and poor comprehension
- Missed out words or adding extra words when reading
- Has difficulty in picking out the important points in reading
Signs in Maths:
- Confusion with place value
- Confused by symbols such + and x
- Difficulty remembering anything in sequential order eg. Months, days of the week.
- Using work avoidance tactics
- Seems ‘dreamy’ does not always listen
- Easily distracted
- Is excessively tired due to the amount of concentration and effort required
A cluster of these indicators alongside ability may suggest dyslexia but this is not conclusive.
Free Screen Reader
Fiction and non-fiction audio files
British Dyslexic Association
Dyslexia SPLD Trust
Falcon response to Dyslexia
Below are some strategies that we may use at Falcon to support children who may have a Dyslexic profile. Falcon does not need a Dyslexia diagnosis to implement this support. This list is not exhaustive and support around your child will very much depend on their needs.
- Conversation with class teacher about concerns and learning progress.
- Specific Learning Difficulty checklist may be completed to identify areas of need.
- Further investigation or conversation with SENDCo around the areas of need so that a plan can be made.
- Assess Plan Do Review (APDR) written for the child. This may include:
- Assessment of phonics and supportive teaching and practice put in place
- Fine motor skills and handwriting intervention
- Use of pencil grips and ergonomic pens
- Chunking class work to support memory
- Building of checklists to support independent checking of work
- Scaffolding written work to support organisation
- Phonic word mats available when writing
- Key word vocabulary available to check spelling
- Electronic dictionaries (UKS2)
- Use of intervention programmes such as Nessy and Dyslexia Gold
- Multi-sensory approaches to learning spelling
- Recording knowledge in other ways when appropriate
- Use of visual timetable
- Coloured background and alternative font on whiteboards
- Allowing extra processing time when answering questions in class or when completing written work
- Providing extra information for homework
5. Review of outcomes and progress
6. If there are persistent barriers then advice from a Specialist Teacher or Advisory Teacher from Dyslexia outreach may be sought to create a further action plan and recommendations.
Children in Year 6 will take part in Standard Assessment Tests in the Summer term. A diagnosis of Dyslexia is not necessary to qualify for extra support and in fact a diagnosis does not offer any different support. Support is given when the school can demonstrate that this is normal practice for the child.
Support in SATs can include:
- Reader for questions in maths
- Prompt to help children stay focussed
- Chunking of test time to allow for breaks
- Access to working in a quieter area
- Extra time