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Dyslexia in Education: A guide for Teachers and Teaching Assistants

There are many nursery teachers I have spoken to over the years who can confidently predict the dyslexic child as early as three years of age. These are the children who have not picked up the nursery rhymes, cannot tie their shoelaces or recite their alphabet. However their observations often fall on deaf ears as the child goes into Infants School and beyond. I hope that this book will give the reader, whether classroom teacher or teaching assistant, the confidence to predict those children’s specific learning difficulty as early as possible.

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Once a diagnosis is made then a whole classroom approach by dyslexia friendly school is the best way forward for the child and Sue Thurtle gives many ideas that will enable dyslexic children to make the best progress, either at primary or secondary level.

However, It is often the brighter child with good strategies that makes it to secondary school without being identified as dyslexic and who falls at the last hurdle of GCSE’s or A Levels. The section on study skills is particularly helpful as many teachers often don’t realise that these skills benefit all students, not just the dyslexic ones. Self esteem can often plummet as the dyslexic child feels they are stupid and it is so important to help build confidence back up. Teaching Assistants are often the best people to do this as they work directly alongside the pupil and often understand their strengths better than the classroom teacher.

The role of the teaching assistant is a pivotal one in the life of dyslexic child and this book will give many ideas and strategies to help. Co–occuring difficulties can be difficult to spot and the book gives plenty of advice and signposts further for additional help

It is important to note the strengths the dyslexic child has – they are often very articulate and creative – just look at the wonderful art work Dianne Giblin has provided in this book! Importantly Sue stresses that the views of the parents should always be taken into consideration and I do feel that this is as they often correct about their child’s difficulties.

I hope that this book will enable teachers and teaching assistants to make a difference to a dyslexic child’s education and enable them to make the most of the huge potential they undoubtedly have.

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