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THE DYSLEXIA SOLUTION

#86 • October 2009

NEWSLETTER

One of my students is a little boy of 8 who is in a hurry.  He is also seriously dyslectic without a clue that there is a sound that goes with a letter.  His  “printing” cannot be duplicated by any font invented by man and bears no relation to the English language.  Fortunately for both of us, he is bright, cute and fun to teach.

But, as I say, he is in  hurry.  If  today we have gone down a column of words he has laboriously sounded out, letter by letter and then assembled into a word, and tomorrow I start at the top of the same column, hc complains that he has already done that one and why does he have to do it again? Yesterday, the word was “until” at the top of a column of two-syllable words with only short vowels and a few consonants.  They were printed with the accented syllable printed bold and the other one normally. This helps when he graduates to longer words and keeps his eyes from seeing the longer word like a jumble of letters.

“We did that one yesterday,” he pointed out.  “Why do I have to do it again?”  

That was easy. “You‘re eight years old now.  You‘ll probably live to be 78.  In those seventy years, how many times do you think you will have read the word, until? I betcha at least two hundred sixty  thousand three hundred forty two.  And you’re complaining about reading it twice?” He grinned and didn’t complain again. 

The other trick to repetition when the student is still going one or two letters at a time is to get to the bottom of the column and then tell him that was good, and now he needs to do it again faster.  Faster! Then again even FASTER. As long as you are using the I-Card, you are forcing the slow left hemisphere to speed up its processing. But watch out.  If you just ask him to read it faster without the I-CARD, all you are doing is getting the right hemisphere to memorize the pattern of the word quickly.  NO,  NO,  NO.  That’s encouraging dyslexia.  He has to speed up his left side.

Teaching tip:   You just got two.  Don’t be greedy.


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