Your child has been assessed as being dyslexic, which has left you worried and concerned, especially as you don’t have much time to help them. You may also find it difficult to squeeze the family budget to get money together to pay for specialist help. Don’t worry any longer, because this post will tell you the single most effective thing you can do with your child to help them with their dyslexia.
Read with your child every day for about 5-10 minutes.
It is as simple as that. When you read with your child, make sure they are reading a book which they want to read as this will do away with any battles. Open your mind to what a ‘book’ is – your child may find a long book daunting to read or they may rise up to the challenge if it is one they desperately want to read; they may prefer one of the graphic novels which have plenty of pictures in them – that is absolutely fine too.
Rather than starting the reading practice with the idea that your child absolutely must do all the reading, go in with the mind- set that you must make it enjoyable for your child.
Depending on the age of your child, you could use puppets to act out the story and take turns in reading. I have lots more ideas about making reading enjoyable in my blog post www.dyslexiadeb.co.uk/single-post/Ramp-Up-Reading.
When your child reads, see if there are words which trip them up all the time.
You could make flash cards up with these words on so that you can practice them before or after you have read together. If they follow a pattern, such as the silent ‘e’, then you could point out words that have this pattern in the book.
You can ask questions like, what is the end sound or start sound of words you choose; ask your child what letters make the vowel sound of the words, for example in ‘right’ it is the ‘igh’ which makes the vowel sound
( Note that with dyslexia we are more interested in the sounds that letters make rather than their names which you give when reciting the alphabet).Only target a few words at a time so that your child isn’t overwhelmed with the amount you want them to learn.
You might be wondering why I have picked on reading as the most important thing to help your dyslexic child with.
This is because reading will improve their vocabulary which, in turn, will help with their writing skills. The more a child reads, the more familiar they will become with grammar which they will need to use in their own writing. If you read a variety of texts with your child, including non-fiction texts then they will gain surface knowledge about a range of topics which, in turn, helps them form opinions and enables them to write about a range of topics. Your child will need this skill for their GCSE’s.
If you would like to read more about how having a wide vocabulary will help your child, you can click here.
If you would like to learn more about how your child can become a better reader then you can read more here.
NB: If you would like to make learning less frustrating and more rewarding for your dyslexic child, then click here to join my Free Facebook Group.