Dear Hyperion Families,
I learned something important recently. Well, I learned multiple things of importance, but there is one particular piece of learning that I feel applies to many of you.
Backstory- I live in a house that was built in 1880. It is thought to originally have been a boarding house for the immigrants who built the trolley tracks running behind it and eventually became my great grandparents farmhouse. It has been in my family ever since.
Back to the present day- It is a cold, drafty house in need of some new windows. My husband and I have many skills, but home repair skills aren’t one of them. So, we called some professionals. Therefore on a cool Friday in October, two men in their early thirties showed up, took a look at our windows, made a diagnosis, and then attempted to share their findings with us. I say they “attempted” because they didn’t do it well. I only understood about every other word. They used terms and acronyms like “low E glass”, “IGU”, "buttering" and "casement". I stared blankly and nodded like I understood. I felt inadequate and undereducated. When I reflected later, I realized that I should have asked them to define terms, explain, and slow down.
Fast forward to 2 days later- I attended school meeting for one of our students here at Hyperion Language and Learning Services. I sat there and listened while the school professionals spoke about a “prior written notice” and of the student’s "present level of performance", "lexile levels", and "orthographic processing abilities”. As a professional who has worked in schools for the past 12 years I easily followed the conversation and thought nothing of it. That is until I looked over at the parents. They stared blankly and nodded like they understood.
The realization that I probably use terms that our families don't understand on a daily basis hit me like a ton of bricks. I was making people feel exactly how the window repair men made me feel. The lack of understanding does not happen because a parent isn’t properly educated, doesn’t care, or is lacking anything at all. The terms are being tossed around like popcorn because when we work within a specific field, be it education or window repair, we use the lingo so easily and effortlessly.
As a result of my window repair experience, it really hit home how important it is for me to change the language I use, slow down, and explain terms. To all of you wonderful parents and caregivers, if I (or another educational professional) am using terms or sharing information about your child that you don't understand, please please please feel empowered to ask for definitions, explanations, and clarifications. I know I should have done just that with the window repair men! In the following weeks I will be posting several articles covering specific terms related to Individualized Education Plans, evaluations, and academic performance so stay tuned! Thanks for reading and reach out if you need help navigating your student's educational plan!
Hello! So today we will be finishing our blog discussion on dyslexia by discussing some ways you and your student’s teachers can help them overcome some of the challenges they face daily. These are simple accommodations that give them the opportunity to reach their full potential in the classroom as well as at home when they are doing homework!
This is not an exhaustive list by far but a good step in the right direction for many students. If you need help determining specific accommodations that may benefit your student reach out to us today at firstname.lastname@example.org!
Hi all! So, today we are going to continue our discussion on Dyslexia. We have discussed what Dyslexia is and how it is diagnosed (if you missed it, click here to catch yourself up!) Today, we will be talking about what happens after the diagnosis?
So, your child has received a diagnosis of Dyslexia. The question is now- how do we “treat” it? Well, unfortunately there is no pill to swallow that provides a cure. However, with the right type of intervention those with Dyslexia can make huge gains in the areas of reading, spelling, writing, and language.
Now, you’re probably asking yourself these questions: “Where do I go for the right type of intervention? How do I know the proposed program is going to work for MY child?” While there is no one specific program identified as the “gold standard” for teaching students to read, all programs should fit within several guidelines and be provided at an appropriate frequency and duration.
We here at Hyperion follow the guidelines set by The International Dyslexia Association which supports a “structured literacy approach”. A structured literacy approach stresses that it is important the student receives systematic (logical order: easiest to hardest), direct (student/teacher interaction), and explicit instruction in phonemic awareness, phonics, decoding, spelling, sight words and comprehension and also receives practice in these skills in order to develop fluency (Shaywitz, 2003). Unless testing showed that the student had average skills in one (or more) of those areas, it should be worked on during intervention.
In addition to these guidelines, there is a consensus that instruction be multisensory which means that the student is given visual, auditory, tactile, and kinesthetic learning opportunities. By using multisensory techniques catered to each individual child, there is a much greater understanding of concepts.
We know that finding support and interventions for your child can be scary and overwhelming, but remember that we are here to help!
So, this month we’ve been discussing all things Dyslexia. If your child is having reading or writing challenges you may have wondered, “Does my child possibly have Dyslexia?” Today we are going to talk about the signs of Dyslexia and how to go about receiving a diagnosis. While we encourage you to read through these common signs, please not to panic or diagnose your child yourself! We do hope that if you are noticing these common signs, that you speak to your child’s teacher, doctor or us here at Hyperion about them immediately.
So what are the signs of Dyslexia?
So what do you do if you see these signs?
Receiving a diagnosis of Dyslexia can involve participating in testing with multiple professionals including a psychologist, neuropsychologist, speech-language pathologist, and/or special educator. Areas to be assessed include:
So, what can you expect after the diagnosis?
Stay tuned! We will return next week to share some information about what to consider after receiving a Dyslexia diagnosis.
Resource: Sally Shaywitz, Overcoming Dyslexia