Colours Colours

Some teachers need educating! The out of step attitudes of a handful of teachers, really does need to change! Unaware and misinformed it taints the teaching profession, is out of order and impacts negatively on the youngsters in their care. Allow me to explain… This week I had the pleasure of chatting with a parent about her dyslexic children, how good they were at certain things, how they were really clever and how proud of them she was. Alas the tales of her children changed from positive to negative as the converstaion changed to school and the experiences they were having there. In particular her 11 year old daughter, she explained how her daughters English teacher was a ‘bit strickt’ and seemed to have a ‘take no messing’ approach. She also went on to tell me that every time her daughter asks this teacher for help, the teacher responds by telling her daughter to just knuckle down and get on with her work, saying that this 11 year old dyslexic student should ‘just get on with it’ because in the ‘outside world’, the ‘big wide world’ when she leaves school there won’t be anyone there to help her, she won’t get ‘support’ or ‘help’ she will be on her own and have to do it all herself! My initial response to this (as we were mid conversation and we had only just met) was to internally cringe and try to hide my instant distain for this teachers attitude! Our conversation continued a little more and the more it did and the more I heard about this amzing 11 yesr...
100% pass rate!

100% pass rate!

I am very Happy to report that yesterday I passed my Text Help Certified Trainer update exam with 100% – Yippee! For those of you who don’t already know I am a HUGE fan of Text Help’s ReadWrite programme, especially the USB mobile version, which allows me to access this fabulous software on any pc I am using and turn bad days into good productive days. Features I use range from the spell-checker that is like a super hero: with explanations of how to use the word, the context and pronunciation; to a talking calculator with an audit trail, that has turned completing my month end & yearend accounts, from stress city to a relative joy! I came across TextHelpUk over a decade ago and was totally impressed with their products and services. I was bowled over at their support of Dyslexia information Day events, attending from Ireland to meet with our visitors and demonstrate Read Write Gold, and also as impressed with their staff’s caring and positive attitudes. TextHelpUk to me embodies the care and consideration that a company should! They not only take care of their clients & customers, they listen and actively support them! I wish all service providers took as much pride and care over their products & customers. Yes I know this is a heavily biased blog, but my bias is based on personal experaince and use of this companies product and services. It was that perosnal experaince that moved me to become a certified trainer, so that I could help others discover and experience for themselves the magic & positive impact of readwrite...
Using Technology to turn a bad day into a positive day!

Using Technology to turn a bad day into a positive day!

Making it a positive day! When it came to starting work today my brain didn’t feel like it was functioning properly, or rather wasn’t  functioning quite as I had planned or hoped it would be. I had plans to write reports, reply to emails, and basically do lots of written/typing based office & admin activities. Whilst sitting and feeling a little sorry for myself; that my brain felt like it is full of thick fog and mist, (not dissimilar to the recent weather we’ve been having), I received a message on my phone from my father, the message had a link to an article about autism, a topic always close to my heart. The title of this article had me intrigued, so I clicked on the link, but then felt myself heave a heavy sigh, as I saw the amount of text I needed to read: a task not usually a problem, but today with my head feeling as if it were full of all that mist and fog – it was a task I didn’t relish! Then, a thought occurred to me; when I’m teaching and working one-to-one with my students, I tell them all about the fancy things that our mobile phones can do. Things that help us when our brains are full of mist and fog! So I tapped on the link to the article my father had sent me, and then I tapped on the phone screen. Next I clicked the ‘select all’ option, and watched with a little smile on my face as my phone selected the article text, and then offered me a ‘speak’...
Dyslexia and prison!

Dyslexia and prison!

The System needs to change! Elizabeth Wilkinson: 23rd October 2015 Some days I truly wish I had a magic wand that I could wave, in order to change the direction & path that some people are headed. Sometimes young people make choices based on a lack of awareness, consequence and understanding of other people’s intent; choices that can have a long lasting and far reaching effects. So many of our Dyslexic/SpLD* children are raised to be happy, fine and dandy youngsters, before starting school they are raised to think positively, are faced and headed on a positive path – then we send them to school, we send them off to enter the Education System! A system that fails so many: using an outdated & inhumane approach of focusing on weaknesses instead of strengths; the design of our current Education System means that teachers are unable or do not have the time to focus on individuals. Rather, it teaches our youngsters to accept mediocrity, that they are ‘not worthy’ of better things and that they are ‘naughty children’. This label of ‘Naughty’ sticks with some of our youngsters when they leave school, it even sticks with some into adult life. I have worked with, met and chatted with hundreds of adults who were made to feel like this at school, and who still in their heart of hearts, feel that is what defines them; that they are not worthy of, or feel that they don’t have the right to strive for better things, a better life; many become a slave or a prophecy to that ‘naughty’ label from school! And...
Dyslexia: Positively Unique!

Dyslexia: Positively Unique!

Dyslexia Awareness Week 2015: Day 7-  Sunday 11th October 2015. Each dyslexia awareness week (starting last year) I intend to feature 7 of my favourite inspirational dyslexics form the past year: I ask them a set of questions (slightly adjusted depending on age and occupation) to which they provide the answers. I hope you find their answers as interesting and enjoyable as I did, and that they inspire you as they have me! Allow me to introduce to you my 7th Positively Unique local dyslexic: A lady who has helped hundreds into education and learning, who has changed her career mid life, and has inspired and helped countless others. She is full of passion and compassion as well as empathy and loves to empower others to achieve: Name: Sally Joyner Age (optional): 49 Business name & Job title: In The Loop – Lip-reading and deaf awareness tutor. A brief description of your job role/business: I teach lip-reading and deaf awareness to groups or on an individual basis. Needs are what the sessions are based on. Location: Shropshire, Staffordshire, Midlands (or anywhere that I’m). When did you find out you were dyslexic?: I found out I was dyslexia when I was about 45. How did you feel when you found out you were dyslexic?: I attended Elizabeth Wilkinson’s Dyslexia Awareness course, as I was co-ordinating learning for union members and members of staff at Royal Mail Shropshire and Mid Wales, she picked it up. (Sally then had a Dyslexia Screening Test and went on to have a Full Diagnostic Assessment.) What difference has it made, if any, to your life...
The 14th Dyslexia information day

The 14th Dyslexia information day

Today is the 14th Dysleia information Day: Free informatoin advice & guidance for dyslexics & their families! Dyslexia information day is a totally free event, that is not-for-profit, set up by Elizabeth Wilkinson: The Dyslexic Dyslexia Consultant; as a parent and a dyslexic Elizabeth understands the struggle to find trustworthy Dyslexia advice & guidance. So back in 2008 Elizabeth decided to do something about it: she set up Dyslexia information Day! Now in its 7th year and on its 14th event, Dyslexia information Day has had over 1500 visitors through its doors: raised over £1300 for local good causes and charities from the sale of refreshments: including Severn Hospice, Hearing Dogs for the Deaf, Compton Hospice, Marie Curie and this time round the money raised will be donated to The British Heart Foundation. Entry is free and although there are some items on sale: Books, Puzzles & Games, the idea behind the event is that you can visit without spending a single penny! Each visitor gets a FREE draw ticket to be in with a chance of winning a copy of Brian Has Dyslexia Written by Jenny Leigh. The winner is picked at random after the event and promptly notified; we even got the book delivered to one family just in time for story time the night of Dyslexia information Day one year! – not that we can promise that prompt a service every time! Exhibitors at Dyslexia information Day 14: The Dyslexic Dyslexia Consultant – Elizabeth Wilkinson (all age ranges), David Edwards – Technology Trainer (adult) Catherine Huckfield – Dyslexia Assessor (adult) Information Advice Support Service IASS –...
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