MAR
07
2009

Percy the Peacock

6 March

 

I love the little video about Percy the Peacock (and I don’t think it is just because the seagull who brings the good news is called Sara!)  

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FEB
24
2009

Why Tyrannosaurus But Not If?

24 February

The Davis Learning Foundation has recently re-launched its website and included a free 15 part course to explain the often asked question

Why can he read tyrannosaurus but can’t read if?”

 

The e-course is aimed at teachers frustrated by the children that seem to have mysterious barriers to effective learning.

If you have ever wondered “Why are there children who get 9/10 in a spelling test, but then spell those same test words incorrectly in their next piece of writing?”

Or  “Why are there children who, however hard I try to make my lesson entertaining, just switch off, or sabotage my efforts and their own learning with seemingly pointless disruptive behaviour?”

then this course is for you. 

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JAN
06
2009

ReadingZone

5 January

Happy New Year!

I finished off last year by recommending audio books and now I have a great site for children’s books.  ReadingZone has advice for children (toddlers to young teenagers) and parents. There are book news, reviews and recommendations for each age group and a newsletter if you would like regular recommendations and news.

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DEC
20
2008

Do you need a last minute idea for Christmas?

20 December

I am a huge fan of audio books . Whilst the importance of reading cannot be overemphasised, listening to an audio book can have some similar benefits.  Your child will be hearing new ideas, literary structures and vocabulary.  The book may expand their knowledge or pique their interest in a subject.  My son also used audio books to help him sleep at night; listening to a well-loved story helped stop his mind from following other thoughts and he would drift off while a familiar voice created a low background of sound.

Audible is a great site.  You can download a single book or take out a monthly membership. 

You may also like to look at Listening Books, a charity which provides audio books for people who find it difficult to read for a number of reasons including dyslexia.  The books can be provided on CD or downloaded.

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DEC
15
2008

Improving Educational Outcomes for Children with Dyslexia

14 December

You may have responded to Sir Jim Rose’s call for people to tell him of their views and experience of dyslexia.  The deadline has now passed but he recently posted an update about the response he had. He received around 850 responses which are now being looked at. His recommendations for identifying and teaching people with dyslexia will be made next Spring.

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NOV
05
2008

Dyslexia – talents and difficulties

5 November 2008 

The most important message for Dyslexia Awareness Week must be that dyslexia is a combination of talents and difficulties, all stemmimg from the tendency to utilise visual, multi-dimensional thought. The characteristics are far wider than many people realise and cover far more than just difficulties with reading.

The Davis Dyslexia Association International has a list on their website of the 37 Common Characteristics of dyslexia.   For example:

·        Excellent long-term memory for experiences, locations, and faces.

·        Poor memory for things that have not been experienced.

·        Strong sense of justice; emotionally sensitive; strives for perfection.

·        High in IQ, yet poor academically.

·        Learns best through hands-on experience and visual aids.

·        Has poor self-esteem; uses ingenious compensatory strategies. 

·        Has difficulty telling and managing time, learning sequenced information.

The full list can be found at www.dyslexia.com.  

These difficulties are compensated by creativity and intuition. For some dyslexic people, the talents naturally outweigh the difficulties, For others, they will excel when taught in a way that suits their thought process, by using hand-on, sensory learning methods.

OCT
14
2008

Today I think only with scents

14 October 2008 

I visited Kew Gardens recently and walked through the Secluded Garden. It has extracts from poems about touch, scent, hearing and sight to illustrate how gardening affects the senses.  It is a beautiful place, you should visit it.

I love this one by Edward Thomas.  He evokes the images just by writing about the scents!

 

Digging

To-day I think
Only with scents, – scents dead leaves yield,
And bracken, and wild carrot’s seed,
And the square mustard field;

Odours that rise
When the spade wounds the root of tree,
Rose, currant, raspberry, or goutweed,
Rhubarb or celery;

The smoke’s smell, too,
Flowing from where a bonfire burns
The dead, the waste, the dangerous,
And all to sweetness turns.

It is enough
To smell, to crumble the dark earth,
While the robin sings over again
Sad songs of Autumn mirth.

Collected Poems by Edward Thomas is published by Faber & Faber, ISBN: 0-571-11368-0

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OCT
01
2008

Dyscalculia and the link with dyslexia

1 October 2008 

 

The University of Western Ontario has produced some interesting research out which finds that many people have both dyslexia and dyscalculia.  This study supports the view that dyscalculia stems from a difficulty linking symbols (for example ‘3’) to the meaning (     ♥  )  and helps clarify why the symptoms of dyslexia and dyscalculia have so many similarities. 

 

Or find out more about the Davis® Maths Mastery Programme here

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