How can I help a dyslexic child within the classroom?
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information for teachers
It is very hard for a teacher to give more one-to-one support to
a pupil who is dyslexic when they have the rest of the class to
consider but adopting a more dyslexia-friendly approach can be of
benefit to all learners.
Below we have listed things that may seem very obvious but may
(For ease 'he' is used in the following)
- Be multi-sensory.
- Be aware of the individual needs of each dyslexic pupil and do
not generalise - one size does not fit all and support needs will
vary between dyslexic children.
- Praise and encourage wherever possible and try to focus on what
he is good at and avoid focusing too much attention on the
- Mark written work on content, not spelling - tick what is right
instead of crossing out what is wrong.
- Mark on oral responses when possible - written work can often
- When reading long words, divide syllables with a pencil line
and help him to pronounce words correctly.
- Make sure he has understood and remembered instructions by
being specific and concise, highlighting important messages or
providing written instructions rather than verbal ones.
- Put important words clearly on the blackboard and give plenty
of time to copy. Writing on alternate lines in different colours
may also help or use pre-prepared handouts for older children.
- Use technology and support software/products where appropriate
to reinforce learning, encouraging the use of support materials
such as Dictaphone, laptop etc.
- Allow extra time if he is struggling to meet deadlines.
- If eligible ensure that he gets any examination concessions
that he is entitled to, including providing a separate room to
reduce distractions and disturbance when other students finish
- If appropriate offer study skills support and help with
timetabling and organisational skills.
- For the older child try to help him plan and organise essays
and assignments and be sympathetic if he arrives late or unprepared
with the wrong books!
- Make him read aloud in public if he is reluctant to do so or do
anything that may being attention to his difficulties on front of
the class. Many dyslexic children are bullied because of their
- Give lists of spelling words to learn - it is better to give
smaller numbers of words that are related, e.g. plate, cake,
- Make him write out work again if it is messy or there are lots
- Compare with others.
- Make him change his writing style.
- Make him stay behind at break-times or after school to catch
- Lose patience if he learns to spell or read a new word and then
later is unable to recall the same word.
- Be too quick to assume he is being lazy as he may tire quickly
as a greater level of concentration is required to compensate for