Our biggest struggle with this child, is that he is the most dyslexic of our [only our oldest child is not] children afflicted by it (and yes-it is an affliction....doesn't mean you cannot succeed and do well in life-it just means it takes longer to learn some things-such as reading; and one needs to find ways to work with and around it). So we have been going over and over and over the same concepts and getting just about no where. I am exhausted, he is downtrodden by it and yet-we cannot give up and "chuck it" out the window. He needs to read-for life! So, after trying several dyslexic friendly programs, reading several books (some more than once or even more than twice), and repeating (kind of like the movie "Groundhog's Day") the same material hoping for a break thru....(and granted we have had some) but it is not where he needs to be-we're giving this a try again.
Now this post is not meant to slam my precious child-but rather to give hope to those who are in the same boat with me...to encourage and offer another option to try. I want to write about this because I have watched my other 2 precious dyslexics struggle, struggle some more, start to figure it out, get on track and then with patience and time-read and read well. LIKE really well-so there is hope- it can be worked through, it can be squashed folks-it can.
If you personally do not have a child with dyslexia, then what I am penning may sound well-odd. Aren't all kids suppose to be reading fairly well by oh-6 or 7? If you don't have a child who has more than the average struggles in reading-then you cannot understand the depth and scope of the issue. That is a whole 'nother post...but suffice it to say-most children with it (depending on the intensity of it) it is a daily battle to have their brain interpret the printed word. It is also a struggle for the one trying to teach them to read (and retain what they know) and to persevere. It simply breaks our hearts and can (if not properly handled) destroy any love of reading (let alone the ability to do so) for the child.
Anyhoo-I am all about giving the dyslexic child the time they need to "get it" and some kids take longer than others-but he himself has shown he is embarrassed at times by it, and definitely frustrated that he cannot read as well as his counterparts. So our goal this year is to get him reading at a level that is closer to his age mates. We'll take it as it comes, and keep plodding along-hopefully, with more success.
That said-I was in prayer, and lo and behold-the Lord put that program in my heart. OK, I can do it -as long as I can figure out what I am suppose to do and do it right. I watched the intro video again, scoured thru the material again, and decided to give it another shot. So-here we are, 2 weeks into it and so far, so good. He knows some of what we are covering, and that is making it easier. We didn't need to do the alphabet part and such, and we have been able to go thru most the vowel teams fairly well...so we are into week 4 now and finding (his words) that he "likes this program." GOOD! That is half the battle. So one of the ideas is to have the children make letters/vowel teams, etc. out of clay or write in sand (altho his father would whoop his behind if he wrote the letters on a dirty car [one suggestion by the author]-bad, BAD idea there-writing words in the dust/dirt of a vehicle scratches the paint-and if it is a newer car, you can kiss that shiny coating good-bye....don't do it!) so I had him make Play-Doh ropes to build the vowel teams...here are some shots to 'splain it....
I had him use different colors for the different groups. The red dots are above the ones that are "never" used at the end of a word-kind of a visual to help his remember (and it worked).
I was finding he could remember the sounds these teams make when shown the flashcards-but (common for dyslexics-at least my kids)...but when the time came to write it "cold" or do this activity...he struggled. This uses several areas (visual, kinesthetic, and tactile) which is helping cement them into the brain there for him. It will have to be done a lot tho (he forgot a few sounds today when I quizzed him)-but we'll keep on keeping on
I am excited to see if this may be the answer we have been so prayerfully looking for. I think I will cry when we get to week 5. Especially if he gets through it successfully-without too many glitches. I will keep you posted....
I am going to update (probably once per month) on his progress. Perhaps this will bless a few other folks who are in this battle with me. If anything-someday my boy will be able to read about this journey we've been on. I think this will be quite a lesson in perseverance for us both.
**now some tips just in case you wanna borrow em :
for the ay and ai-we say "this is what the Fonz says" (yes, my kids know the Fonz cuz we watch the Happy Days reruns) so he actually remembers with that clue. [aayyyhhh]
for the oy and oi-I tap my forehead like I forgot something-it helps him too. [oiiiiii]
I will add more when we create em as we go thru this....I am all about clues man-all about em. :0)