Welcome to week 1 of the Dyslexic Mum boot-camp. The theme this week is "Understanding Dyslexia", designed to help you learn the basics.
Note this bootcamp originally ran during the six week summer holidays. You can now do the bootcamp in your own time, by completing the activities below.
This first week is all about learning activities that will support you and your child. We'll be using the Dyslexic Mum Mooki card kit, which has a 10 min activitiy on each card. Below are links to the activity cards, where you will find videos and information about each activity we'll be covering.
Dyslexia is about more than just reading and writing difficulties. So the activities will cover everything from managing emotions, improving self-esteem and helping a dyslexic child to get motivated.
These activities will only take ten minutes a day, but you can spend more time if you like.
First, we'll do an activity to help your child understand dyslexia. Then, we'll focus on building their self-confidence by working on the self-esteem sun. This will help them recognise their strengths and understand the importance of continuous learning.
To keep your child motivated, we'll introduce a reward chart. It's a great way to encourage them, whether it's for ten minutes of reading or simply brushing their teeth every day.
Dyslexic children often experience strong emotions, so we'll use the Emoji Check-In to help them communicate their feelings. This activity will also give you insights into why they might be reluctant to participate in certain activities.
Lastly, we'll tackle reading and writing because they are essential skills. We'll explore multisensory learning, a dyslexic-friendly teaching technique. It's a fun approach that uses paints, colors, sounds, and smells to help children learn how to read, write, and spell basic words. The card kit includes word lists, and we'll start with the 100-word list. Research shows that mastering these words allows children to read 50% of all books, providing a solid foundation.
Mark Cooper works with dyslexic children everyday. He is a teaching assistant at a SEN college. Also winner of the Dyslexic Mum, TA awards 2023.
Watch his video, learn why dyslexic people are amazing and how to get the best from them. He also talks about what technologies can be used to help dyslexic children learn in the classroom.
Whilst you complete the boot camp, I'll be available to answer your questions and provide support. If you complete the activities, feel free to take a picture and share it with the group. For on-line support join the "Dyslexia Mums Support Group U.K" on Facebook.
I completed the six week boot-camp, during the summer holidays. Doing the 10 activities each day with my own little girl. Here is how it went:
My 7 year old little girl did not want to do the activity at first. So we made it more fun. We made a buzzer sound when she, chose one of the colours/ questions on the back of the card. Then she started to enjoy talking about dyslexia. How she may have got it from someone in her family and who that might have been.
This morning, I just knew my little girl would not be up for doing things. She was grumpy. I tried the emoji checkin with her anyway.
She said she was happy and angry. I asked why? She said "I am happy it's school holidays, but I am tired and you keep asking me to do things, it's making me angry".So we agreed if she did just 10 mins of reading practice, I would leave her alone to watch a film.It worked, she did her reading and was calmer the rest of the afternoon.
I am leaving the card now on the fridge to do when I need it.
We went to a museum this morning. So I was unsure if my little girl would have the energy to do it. After a rest, I said do you want to talk about all the thing you are good at.
Then we drew the self-esteem sun on an old cereal box. It only took 10mins. And after that, my little girl did not want to do any more anyway.
She did look chuffed, this evening showing her daddy all the things she is good at. It is on the wall now for her to look at. Her little sister did one too.
I find getting my little girl to do anything so difficult. I usually would find myself getting more annoyed, shouting more. The shouting never worked and afterwards I would feel like a bad mum for shouting.
Starting this summer holidays, I knew it would be awful if I spent everyday shouting. So I starting using the "reward chart" on Monday.
We did the reward chart together and said she had to do the following everyday. To get a treat on Friday. She loves a film night with treats on a Friday and a magazine.
So has it worked?
I have shouted less. It has been good to have a way to get her to do things. She has done most things, yet sometimes has been too tired so I have let it go.
Today she was really tired, so I had an extra bride. If she did 10 mins writing, she could make rice krispie cakes. Also I did the reward chart, along with getting my little girl to plan her routine each day. Knowing what is going to happen, seems to be also helping her.
Here is the multi-sensory learning we tried. I kept it really simple. First we did "Rainbow Words".
Really easy to do. We practised 10 words. Changing felt-tip colour for each word.
Then we had ago at writing words in pasta. My little girl struggled to write the word "Cap".So I got her to write it in pasta 3 times.
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