Dyslexia – How can I help?

dyslexia help

Help for dyslexia… What can be done at home?

Helping your child with dyslexia can be a challenge, particularly if you’re never been confident in your own reading and writing skills. But you don’t have to be an expert to help work on certain skills or strengthen your child’s self-esteem.

Keep in mind that kids (and families) are all different, so not all options will work for you. Don’t panic if the first strategies you try aren’t effective. You may need to try several approaches to find what works best for your child. Here are some things you can try at home:

  • Read out loud every day. If your child is very young, read picture books together. For a younger child, snuggle up with a copy of Harry Potter. For a teenager, consider reading magazine or newspaper articles or maybe a recipe. Billboards, store-discount signs and instruction manuals are also fair game. Hearing you read can let your child focus on understanding the material and expanding his overall knowledge base. Do it every chance you can get.
  • Tap into your child’s interests. Provide a variety of reading materials, such as comic books, mystery stories, recipes and articles on sports or pop stars. Look for good books that are at your child’s reading level. Kids with dyslexia and other reading issues are more likely to power through a book if the topic is of great interest to them.
  • Use audiobooks. Check your local library to see if you can borrow audio recordings of books. You can also access them online. Some stores sell books for younger kids that come with a recording of the story on a CD that prompts them when it’s time to turn the page. Listening to a book while looking at the words can help your child learn to connect the sounds they’re hearing to the words they’re seeing.
  • Look for apps and other high-tech help. Word processors and spell-check can help kids who have trouble with reading and spelling. Voice recognition software can help older students tackle writing assignments by letting them dictate their ideas instead of having to type them. There are also lots of apps and online games that can help your child build reading skills.
  • Observe and take notes. Watching your child more closely and taking notes on her behaviour may reveal patterns and triggers that you can begin to work around. Your notes will also come in handy if you want to talk to teachers, doctors or anyone else you enlist to help your child.
  • Focus on effort, not outcome. Praise your child for trying hard, and emphasise that everyone makes mistakes—you included! Your encouragement will help your child stay motivated.
  • Make your home reader-friendly. Try to stock every room (including the bathroom!) with at least a few books or magazines your child might be interested in reading. Take a book when you go out for pizza or on a trip, and read it to your family so you can all discuss it. Look for other creative ways to encourage reading and writing at home.
  • Boost confidence. Use hobbies and afterschool activities to help improve your child’s self-esteem and increase resilience. Try different ways to identify and build on your child’s strengths.
SchoolvisionDelivering effective solutions to approx 90% of those with symptoms of dyslexia”

What can make the journey easier?

Dyslexia can present challenges for your child and for you. But with the proper support, almost all people with dyslexia can become accurate readers. Your involvement will help tremendously.

Understanding dyslexia and looking for ways to help your child is an important first step. There’s a lot you can do—just don’t feel you have to do everything all at once. Pace yourself. If you try a bunch of strategies at the same time, it might be hard to figure out which ones are working. And do your best to stay positive. Your love and support can make a big difference in your child’s life.

Extract from https://www.understood.org/en