Dyslexia Scotland Education Conference – Dyslexia: my wider world

Come and visit us at the Dyslexia Scotland Conference.

Date: Saturday 27 October 2018

Time: 9:00am – 4:15pm (Registration begins at 9:00am and the conference starts at 9:30am)

Venue: University of Strathclyde (Technology and Innovation Centre), 99 George Street, Glasgow G1 1RD.

Audience: this conference will appeal mainly to primary and secondary class teachers, Headteachers, support for learning practitioners and other educators working with children and young people with dyslexia in a learning setting.

 

#mywiderworld

Monthly Dyslexia News Digest – September 2018

In the headlines

21 September 2018

Sally and Bennett Shaywitz have been researching dyslexia for decades. They run the Yale Center for Dyslexia and Creativity. Much of their research has drawn on data from their longitudinal studies on a cohort of children from kindergarten entry to mature adulthood. They have studied the prevalence of dyslexia, the gender composition, long-term outcomes and economic consequences of dyslexia in adults. Sally Shaywitz wrote “Overcoming Dyslexia” in 2003. Bennett Shaywitz is using fMRI (functional magnetic resonance imaging) to try and discern a ‘neural signature for dyslexia’.

https://www.nytimes.com/2018/09/21/health/dyslexia-shaywitz-yale.html

25 September 2018

Matt Boyd, Founder of Exceptional Individuals has launched a 6 week training course for neuro-diverse people to help them improve their chances of gaining employment. As a dyslexic himself he feels the job selection process of replying to job adverts and being interviewed is tougher for people with dyslexia and that their talents can be overlooked.  The Exceptional Individuals own website has a Jobs Board called Incluzy and the website provides support and ideas for job search for neuro-diverse individuals.

https://www.londonlive.co.uk/news/2018-09-25/dyslexia-academy-opens-in-london

https://www.exceptionalindividuals.com

30 September 2018

BBC 4 broadcast the documentary “Farther and Sun: A Dyslexic Road Trip”, which is a film made by Richard Macer with his 11 year old son, Arthur exploring whether dyslexia is a disability or a gift.  Arthur was diagnosed at age 9 and Richard has always suspected he himself is dyslexic but was only tested during the making of the film. The assessor discovers that he has a Specific Learning Difficulty because he has developed good compensatory skills.

The pair visit academics including Maggie Snowling and Julian Elliot and successful dyslexics like Richard Branson and Eddie Izzard to learn more about the debate around dyslexia.

The hour long programme is still available to watch on the BBC iPlayer.

https://www.bbc.co.uk/programmes/b0bm6pdg

 

 

Monthly Dyslexia News Digest – August 2018

In the headlines

9 August 2018

Freya Ridings, 23, is a singer-songwriter who has expressed her gratitude for being dyslexic in an interview with the BBC. She says that her severe dyslexia is the reason that she began to write her own songs at the age of 9 because she struggled so much with learning anyone else’s that her music teachers gave up on her. She attended the Brit School from age 16. Her single “Lost Without You” has begun to create a stir. Watch her video for the single on youtube here https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=tDPpex1wvOc

https://www.bbc.com/news/entertainment-arts-45095942

 

Dyslexia: to disclose or not?

August has been a quiet month for dyslexia stories but that just allows us to highlight some of the work done by the West Lothian Dyslexia Network on Dyslexia and Disclosure.

West Lothian Dyslexia Network is made up of a range of partners in housing, employment, learning and community-based services, who work together to enable fair access to services for adults with dyslexia. The network’s members identified that some of the adults they supported were reluctant to disclose their dyslexia, which makes it difficult to put relevant adjustments in place. The network decided to conduct a survey to get a better understanding of people’s motivations relating to disclosure.

Although some respondents had positive experiences to share on disclosure, many had felt discriminated against. Interestingly the survey found that younger people are more likely to disclose with all the respondents who were 25 or under doing so to help with work or learning.

Follow the link on West Lothian Dyslexia Network’s webpage to download the full article originally published by Dyslexia Scotland.

https://www.westlothian.gov.uk/dyslexia-network

 

 

 

Monthly Dyslexia News Digest – July 2018

In the headlines

6 July 2018

John Spence writes about overcoming dyslexia, attention deficit hyperactivity disorder and Irlen Syndrome. He had a difficult time at school in the 1970s and 1980s due to the conditions being undiagnosed. He thought it was normal to see ‘words swirling in 3D’ on the page but it meant he struggled to learn to read. In order to hide his difficulties, he developed a persona as the class clown and learnt things by heart. He was good at practical biology and left school with an ‘O’ Level in Home Economics. He joined the military and enjoyed it because it was practical and physical. It was during his time in the army that the fact he could not read was uncovered. It led to him returning to education at the age of 34. He took a degree in biological medicine and health sciences at the Open University. An educational psychologist diagnosed him with Irlen Syndrome and he was able to use his Disabled Students’ Allowance to pay for a tutor. He used a laptop with read and write and speak and spell programs and had any reading material printed on green paper. It took him 9 years to complete his degree. He is now an Ambassador for the OU alongside his work in the military.

https://www.theguardian.com/lifeandstyle/2018/jul/06/experience-i-couldnt-read-until-i-was-34

16 July 2018

The advertising agency Leo Burnett London has won the digital creative competition run by Ocean and Campaign for its ‘A moment of dyslexia’ ad for the British Dyslexia Association. The ad uses facial-detection technology on Ocean’s digital out of home screens which can tell how long someone looks at the screen and the longer they do the more jumbled the words and letters become as a simulation of what happens to dyslexics looking at a page of text.

There is a short youtube film about the ad here –

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=BQTIXdOCaq8

https://www.campaignlive.co.uk/article/facial-detection-tech-makes-dyslexic-experience-real/1487804

https://www.charitydigitalnews.co.uk/2018/07/17/dyslexia-association-digital-ooh-campaign-live/

22 July 2018

Brendan Morrissey, a Tech investor is launching a ‘bespoke social network’ for children and teenagers with dyslexia and ADHD called iDyslexic. He is partnered with the Irish Dyslexia Association and plans to tie-in with dyslexia associations around the world.

Sign up to be kept informed about the launch of the app at the website www.idyslexic.com

https://www.independent.ie/business/technology/tech-investor-to-launch-bespoke-social-network-for-dyslexic-children-37141341.html

 

 

Monthly Dyslexia News Digest – June 2018

In the headlines

14 June 2018

Dr Daryl Brown, Headteacher at Maple Hayes Hall in Lichfield which is a school specialising in teaching dyslexic children, has written in the TES about how the introduction of EHC (Education, Health and Care) plans in 2014 has created problems in SEND provision in schools. His experience has been that local authorities are reluctant to do the necessary assessment tests on struggling children because if found to be in need of extra support the council has a legal duty to follow up with funding for the necessary support up to the age of 25 where needed. EHC plans are more complex than the previous statements of SEN, which had six sections. EHC plans have twelve sections.   Dr Brown is aware of the frustrations of parents trying to get their children assessed so they can access the support they need. The process has become lengthy and expensive as the parents are having to fight every step of the way.

https://www.tes.com/news/big-problem-heart-send-funding

24 June 2018

Sally Magnusson’s 26 year old son Rossie Stone who was diagnosed with dyslexia aged 11 has turned his innovative technique for learning into a range of educational comic books. He used to turn his notes for his Highers studies into comic book form with smaller text boxes with images alongside. He found the technique helped him to learn the content. Having done a degree at art school he founded Dekko Comics three years ago. The company produces monthly issues, which feature maths and English in every issue. Two Scottish Local Authorities are already using them in their schools and they receiving a lot of interest and acclaim.

Have a look for yourself on their website – https://dekkocomics.com

https://www.dailyrecord.co.uk/news/scottish-news/son-bbc-news-anchor-overcomes-12778550

27 June 2018

A team of Norwegian researchers claim to have discovered another ‘gene for dyslexia’ and have written up their research in the Journal of Medical Genetics. They investigated 36 members of a Norwegian family to look for patterns in their genes. The family has a number of members with developmental dyslexia who exhibit a different processing pathway in response to phonological tasks and have impaired discrimination of both rapidly presented visual and auditory non-verbal information. The team are adding to the on-going threads of research that document the array of genes that seem to be involved in dyslexia.

https://jmg.bmj.com/content/36/9/664

 

 

 

 

Monthly Dyslexia News Digest – May 2018

In the headlines

3 May 2018

‘The Mirror’ reports that Paul Whiteman, general secretary of the National Association of Head Teachers and Helen Boden, CEO of the British Dyslexia Association, along with twenty-four other charities, have sent an open letter to the Chancellor, Philip Hammond, stating that children with Special Needs like dyslexia, partial sight, autism or learning difficulties are being the hardest hit by the government’s policy of austerity. The spending cuts in education are meaning that these children are not getting the help and support they so desperately need. The NAHT conference to be held in Liverpool in May is going to demand that the government provides more funding for children with complicated needs.

https://www.mirror.co.uk/news/uk-news/head-teachers-warn-children-disabilities-12469150

7 May 2018

The Scottish Children’s Services Coalition (SCSC) have called on the Scottish Government to review how local authorities are supporting children and young people with complex and high level needs. There has been a decline in the number of children with additional support needs (ASN) such as autism, dyslexia and ADHD receiving a so-called Co-ordinated Support Plan (CSP). Having a CSP entitles the child to additional resources and places statutory duties on local authorities to review and ensure that the support provisions contained within the CSP are being met. Local authorities are more reluctant to provide CSPs due to the on-going cuts in health, education and social work services.

https://www.scotsman.com/news/leading-providers-of-services-to-children-call-for-more-support-1-4735841

22 May 2018

The British Dyslexia Association (BDA) has released its 2018 Style Guide which aims to encourage designers, businesses and teachers to consider dyslexics when making typeface, colour, spacing and imagery choices in their written communications including websites, apps and brands. The BDA has been publishing the guide annually for twenty years. It has been reviewed by researchers at the University of Southampton, who have collated the most recent research on dyslexia and readability. Recommendations include using sans serif typefaces like Arial, Verdana, or Tahoma, making fonts at least 12 pt with headings sized twenty percent larger than the normal text and for the first time looking at the spacing between letters and words which has an impact on readability too.

https://www.designweek.co.uk/issues/21-27-may-2018/designing-dyslexia-style-guide-make-reading-easy-everyone/

Download your own copy of the Dyslexia Style Guide 2018 from this link to the British Dyslexia Association website –

https://www.bdadyslexia.org.uk/common/ckeditor/filemanager/userfiles/Dyslexia_Style_Guide_2018-final.pdf

 

 

 

 

 

Iansyst Zoo logo

Supporting Students with Dyslexia in the classroom

This event has unfortunately been cancelled.

There is going to be an event in Edinburgh, focusing on the Secondary Curriculum.

Keynote Speaker: Moira Thomson MBE  and Assistive Technology by Iansyst Ltd, Edinburgh

Thursday 31st May 9.30a.m to 2.00pm

Venue – Edinburgh Zoo Conference Room

A key CPD seminar designed to help teachers develop a ‘core knowledge’ of dyslexia characteristics and their impact on learning – to help them adjust classroom practice to support individual learners and develop effective solutions.

The seminar will consist of two key presentations:

  1.  Supporting Students with Dyslexia in the secondary curriculum:
  • Dyslexia explained and how the characteristics may manifest in the classroom as barriers to learning
  • How to identify them and meet the needs of individual dyslexic learners
  • The approaches to develop effective reasonable adjustments that can minimise/remove those barriers (this will include access arrangements for exams).

2.    Assistive Technology Presentation and Resources:

  • Providing teachers with a good introduction to the range of assistive technology software available to support dyslexic learners including text-to-speech, speech recognition, mind-mapping and note-taking solutions
  • Product presentations and supporting notes that make the connection between matching the appropriate AT solution with the needs of the learner.

A delegate pack of resources and a Certificate of Attendance will also be provided on the day. A free copy of one of the 25 titles in the series the ‘Supporting Dyslexic Learners in the Secondary Curriculum’ by Moira Thomson MBE, will also be included. (Available for either the English or Scottish curriculum).

About the Keynote Speaker:

Moira Thomson MBE. Iansyst ltd is pleased to be working with Moira whose career includes many years as an experienced teacher and development officer who managed a Support for Learning team in a large Edinburgh secondary school. Moira has previously been chair of Dyslexia Scotland South East providing advice and support for children and young people with dyslexia. Moira is a member of a team appointed by Scottish Government Ministers to be independent adjudicators for Additional Support Needs dispute resolution. As an educational consultant and assessor, Moira is an experienced CPD provider with a focus on dyslexia.

The Iansyst Team:

Iansyst Ltd has been established for 35 years as a leading dyslexia solutions and assistive technology supplier. Iansyst also has a dedicated office and Scottish team based in Edinburgh providing AT software and computer solutions with full help-desk support, on-site product training and a range of consultancy services for disability awareness and accessibility. Visit our ecommerce website www.dyslexic.com

Preview the latest Assistive Technology:

Iansyst ltd presents the very best AT software and hardware suppliers. At the seminar delegates will be able to try out a range of products to include: Scanning Pens, MindView, Kaz Typing Tutor software, No Isolation Avatar, Literacy Software, Hard of Hearing Devices.

 

Agenda

9.30 Coffee on arrival. An opportunity to meet the team and preview the AT products

10.00 Welcome and Introductions. Janine King Managing Director Iansyst Ltd

10.10 Supporting Dyslexic Learners in the Secondary Curriculum. Moira Thomson MBE

11.50 Opportunity for questions and discussion

12.00 Lunch & exhibition

12.30 An introduction to the types of Assistive Technology available. Product presentations to include:

Making information accessible through:

  • Scanning devices, Scanning Pens and the Exam Pen
  • Dragon Speech Recognition
  • Supporting literacy, reading & spelling with Text-to-Speech Software
  • Organising ideas and planning using Mind Mapping approaches by MindView
  • New to the UK, the ‘No Isolation’ Avatar robot enabling learners at home to be able to participate in the classroom in real time.

1.45 Plenary Session

2.00 Close.

Edinburgh Zoo will provide free passes for all delegates that attend. Delegates are welcome to visit the Zoo (and the Penguins Parade which starts at 2.15pm).

 

Monthly Dyslexia News Digest – April 2018

In the headlines

19 April 2018

Researchers in the Faculty of Psychology at the University of Iceland have published findings in the journal “Cognition” which seem to show that there is a connection between dyslexia and visual processing. They claim that the dyslexic subjects in their experiment had ‘abnormal face processing’ and exhibited ‘specific deficits in high-level visual processing’ which they say explains their dyslexia.

http://icelandreview.com/news/2018/04/19/icelandic-researchers-find-connection-between-dyslexia-and-visual-processing

26 April 2018

Theo Paphitis has told Business Leader that his dyslexia has helped him in his career as a successful entrepreneur. He claims that it led to him creating a whole new world for himself in finding alternative solutions from the norm for processing and analysing information. Skills that he employs in running his businesses of Ryman, Robert Dyas and Boux Avenue.

https://www.businessleader.co.uk/i-wouldnt-be-where-i-am-today-if-i-wasnt-dyslexic-theo-paphitis-talks-business-and-success/44171/

26 April 2018

Richard Branson has given an interview to CNN Money about his life and career from being thought to be the ‘dumbest person at school’ due to his undiagnosed dyslexia to making his mark in a number of different business sectors including the record industry, mobile phones, trains, cruise ships and planes. He values taking risks in business and learning from any failures along the way.

http://money.cnn.com/video/news/2018/04/26/richard-branson-virgin-group-rebound-orig.cnnmoney/index.html

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Monthly Dyslexia News Digest – March 2018

In the headlines

11 March 2018

Andre Agassi’s Early Childhood Neuroscience Foundation has teamed up with Square Panda to fund a dyslexia-assessment game called Readvolution , which they hope to make available for universal screening for dyslexia in the U.S.A.

Original source: https://www.engadget.com/2018/03/11/andre-agassi-square-panda-readvolution-dyslexia/

24 March 2018

Writing in “The Guardian”, the Secret Teacher sees huge delays in assessments being undertaken on struggling children and feels that there is not enough funding for schools to have enough staff to help struggling children in the classroom. Read the full article at the following link –

https://www.theguardian.com/teacher-network/2018/mar/24/secret-teacher-were-setting-dyslexic-children-up-to-feel-like-failures

27 March 2018

The British Dyslexia Association has produced an animation called See Dyslexia Differently, which challenges preconceptions about dyslexia. The animation has been sent to primary schools to raise awareness and spark debate and discussions. The BDA has also worked with Twinkl, a teaching resource website to produce further resources on dyslexia for schools. Follow this link to see the animation on youtube https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=gbWspi2_A1Q

Follow this link to see the BDA’s further teaching resources

http://www.bdadyslexia.org.uk/educator/additional-resources-for-educators

Original souce: https://www.charitydigitalnews.co.uk/2018/03/27/charity-turns-animation-spread-message/

31 March 2018

Angie Fox has written a lively article about understanding her daughter’s diagnosis of dyslexia. They live in Australia where dyslexia is not reliably recognised or catered for despite legislation since 1992. She can tell her daughter has many positive traits like the ability for Big Picture Thinking, problem solving skills, innovation and creativity. Her daughter was diagnosed aged 7 when she was tested privately at a cost of $1,200. She has received hundreds of hours of private, one-on-one intervention at $95 an hour. Angie knows that her family has been lucky to have the resources to support their daughter in this way. She feels the Australian education system is unfair to dyslexic children.

Original source: https://www.theguardian.com/society/2018/mar/31/existing-between-the-lines-getting-to-know-my-daughters-dyslexia