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Resources to Support Dyslexic Pupils.

Contents.

1. Introduction.
2. Resources to support pupils in Primary School.
3. Resources to support pupils in Secondary School.
4. Further Resources and Suppliers.

1.Introduction.

Dyslexic pupils benefit from early intervention to prevent slipping behind their peers. Where specialist support is offered at a late age, learning is less effective and self-esteem and emotional well-being may be considerably undermined.

Dyslexic pupils will need individual support which is differentiated from that offered to low achieving pupils, addressing the very different learning style of the dyslexic brain, if pupils are to make significant progress. Ideally this should be offered by staff with some training in supporting dyslexic children. In some cases, one-to-one tuition from a specialist dyslexia teacher may be necessary.

For guidance on assisting dyslexic pupils with literacy see LiteracyTuition.

For guidance on supporting pupils with dyscalculia and dyslexic difficulties with maths, please see our information sheet on Dyscalculia.

Coloured Overlays.
There is often a misconception that all children with dyslexia would benefit from a coloured overlay to mitigate visual stress difficulties. However, only a minority of children with dyslexia will have these difficulties which can be helped by coloured filters. See our information sheet Eyes and Dyslexia.

If it appears that a child has visual stress difficulties, a selection of colours could be offered. If a particular colour seems to be helpful initially, this could be tried out for a month. If it is still effective, the parents could be encouraged to seek a professional eye assessment. This would help to determine the exact shade of overlay which would be the most appropriate, including the option of coloured glasses.
The right colour can sometimes make a dramatic improvement in reading efficiency, (but of course it will not teach a child to read).

Multipacks of different coloured overlays can be obtained via the BDA Shop.

Coloured Paper and Dyslexia Friendly Text.
Many people with dyslexia find the glare of white paper and white backgrounds interferes with their ability to see text clearly, (scotopic sensitivity). We have even had reports that red text on a whiteboard is not visible at all.
The background of interactive whiteboards could be selected to cream or a pastel shade. Reducing glare will help all pupils, not just those with dyslexia.

Offering coloured paper can make a real difference to some dyslexic children. Individual pupils may have a preference for a particular colour of paper.
The way material is presented will also support dyslexic reading: see Dyslexia Style Guide.


2.Resources to Support Dyslexia Pupils in Primary School.

Practical Aids.

  • Whiteboards and whiteboard markers
  • Highlighters
  • Post-it Notes
  • Pastel coloured paper/exercise books
  • Coloured overlays and reading rulers
  • Crossbow Write and Wipe Pockets
  • Wooden letter: upper and lower case.

Resources to Support Literacy.

There are two well recognised dyslexia reading schemes:

  • Alpha to Omega.
  • Hickey Multisensory Language Course.

Toe by Toe is also a useful resource.

There are number of computer and non-computer based resources:

Computerised Resources.

  • Teach Your Monster to Read. A series of free, fun games to practise the first stages of reading.

  • Units of Sound Multimedia (based on Hickey). A multimedia and multisensory reading and spelling programme.

  • Nessy. A fun and well thought through programme for primary school.

  • Rapid Reading for struggling pupils at KS2.

  • AcceleRead/AcceleWrite. Literacy support for WAVE 3 intervention using text-to-speech software to improve reading and writing.

  • Lexia. A popular and fun product including Early Reading, Foundation Reading, and Strategies for Older Students . Using the Strategies for Older Students programme gives a mature interface so no problems with older students feeling patronised.
    It does, however, address the needs of very poor literacy skills down to phonics with the addition of worksheets to print off. Data is automatically held by the programme re progress and areas of difficulty which can be picked up later by staff.

  • Lexion: is even more fine-grained and highly regarded by speech and language specialists and specialist dyslexia teachers.

  • Wordshark (based on Alpha to Omega) using games to reinforce learning.

Try before you Buy.
Many programmes come with free demo discs so you can trial things through first.
Lexia offer a free trial with good support in its use.

Other Multi Sensory Learning Resources.

Reading Resources.

Phonics

To learn how to pronounce phonics correctly, see this video

For information on synthetic phonics, see http://www.syntheticphonics.net/

Synthetic Phonics methods are recommended for all beginning readers by the 2006 Rose Review.

Synthetic Phonics methods are derived from the Hickey Multisensory Language Course for dyslexic learners. The principle is to teach one phoneme (sound of one or more letters) and its written form (grapheme) at a time, and read and write words that can be made from the letters learned so far. High frequency tricky, irregular, words are introduced gradually.

There is a list of government approved schemes and matched funding grants for schools.

Phonicshark software has been approved by the Department for Education for 50% match-funding. This is created from Wordshark and provides a low-cost resource to support the teaching of synthetic phonics in KS1.

Phonics Books.

Games and Aids.
There are a number of games and various aids which can support dyslexic learning, for example:

Memory.

Difficulties with short term and working memory are a common feature of dyslexia. Games such as Lucid Research's Memory Booster and Nintendo's Brain Booster may be helpful.

Touch Typing Tutors.

Pupils struggling with handwriting could benefit from learning to touch-type and using a computer for written work. The following are designed to support dyslexic pupils:

  • Engish Type Junior.
  • English Type Senior.
  • Nessy Fingers.
  • Touch Type Read & Spell.

For further information see the BDA Technologies website.


3.Resources to support dyslexic pupils in Secondary School.

Practical Aids.

  • Whiteboards and whiteboard markers
  • Highlighters
  • Post-it Notes
  • Pastel coloured paper/exercise books
  • Coloured overlays and reading rulers
  • Crossbow Write and Wipe Pockets
  • Wooden letters: upper and lower case.

Computerised Reading Schemes.

  • Lexia. A popular and fun product including Early Reading, Foundation Reading, and Strategies for Older Students . It does, however, address the needs of very poor literacy skills down to phonics with the addition of worksheets to print off. Lexia offer a free trial with good support in its use.
  • Units of Sound. A multimedia and multisensory reading and spelling programme.
  • Nessy. A fun and well thought through programme for primary school which may appeal to younger offenders.
  • Wordshark. Using games to reinforce learning.

Paper Based Reading Scheme.
Toe by Toe is also a useful resource.

Intervention Programmes.
- Word Wasp.
- Hornet (basic rules and structures of English).

Consolidation/Reinforcement.
- Dyslexia Stile.
- Swap it Games.
- TRUGS (Teaching Reading using Games) Sets 1, 2, 3.

Dictionary.
Ace Dictionary.
(The Ace dictionary is a phonics dictionary based on word sound and requires understanding of language by tutors of syllables, short and long vowel sounds etc.)

Spell it Yourself.

Comprehension.
Readers with Exercises:
Brown and Brown with questions.

Reading Accuracy and Comprehension.
Stride Ahead.

Fiction Books for Reluctant Readers.
- Gatehouse Readers.

Touch Typing Tutors. Pupils struggling with handwriting could benefit from learning to touch-type and using a computer for written work. The following CD Rom tutors are designed to support dyslexic pupils:

  • English Type Senior
  • Touch Type Read & Spell

For further information see the BDA Technologies website.


4.Further Resources and Suppliers.

Assistive Technology.

There are many excellent software aids to support dyslexic reading and writing.
These include:

  • Text reading software.
  • Predictive text software.
  • Voice recognition software.

For information and advice see the BDA Technologies website.

Further Resources.

The Dyslexia Spld Trust website has a list of literacy schemes and training resources:
- Interventions for Literacy.
- Training for teachers: Professional Development Framework

Suppliers.

Many of these resources can be found on the BDA Shop

There are number of suppliers of dyslexia resources, including:

For general resources and games:
http://www.crossboweducation.com
http://www.dyslexiaactionshop.co.uk/
http://www.thedyslexiashop.co.uk
http://www.ldalearning.com

For books:
http://www.senbooks.co.uk

For computer based resources:
http://www.dyslexic.com.

IT information
Further information about computer based resources can be found on the BDA Technologies website.

Involving Parents.

We have information on a number of useful resources for parents: Helping your Child at Home

For instance, the DIY Readers’ Support Pack For Parents, - sound to letter links and early sound blending, would benefit weaker pupils.