Thursday, 2 February 2017

Activities for Reading Fluency with Visual Dyslexia

Improving Visual Memory

I have  worked extensively with students with visual dyslexia. These students often have good phonemic awareness, and can "sound out" words,  but can not visualize these words in their minds and so continue to sound out the same words time and time again. These students must have help to retrain the brain to see these words and phrases in their "mind's eye." If the students can not get these words from the short term memory to the long term their reading rate is extremely slow. This leaves them frustrated. 

Sentence Pyramids

One activity I use to help students with this are Sentence Pyramids. They help with repetition in a fun way. I have students read one word or phrase and then try to vizualize that word with closed eyes and “air write” the word or phrase.

Sentence Flip Books


These work on the same principle. Have the student read one sentence at a time and then flip the page and try to write it. For some students , they may need to just write one or two words and then flip back and read again.  The goal is to help them retain more and more word pictures and not to "sound out."  "Oh, wait" but you might think but " sounding out" is good. Indeed, it is an important skill but these are words they already know the sounds for. In fact, they have decoded them perhaps hundreds of times. They need to get beyond decoding to fluency.

Sentence puzzles

I included sentence puzzles in this fluency pack to aid in fluency and visualization. Have the student put together the puzzle, read it, and then turn over one piece at a time and have them "air write" what they saw.
I have a sample pack of these materials available for Free here. The whole pack has 25 sentence pyramids with stories, flip books, and puzzles to make essential practice fun.
You may purchase this megapack here.

Sentence pyramids Powerpoint


I tutor students online all over the word. So I need great multimedia presentations to keep kids attention while we work on needed skills. I created a Sentence Pyramid Powerpoint to keep my students engaged. This powerpoint will reveal one phrase at a time and kids love it. You can buy it here.

Strengthen Symbol Imagery


Strengthening symbol Imagery is essential for all struggling and beginning readers. Without good symbol imagery skills students reading rate and spelling accuracy is curtailed. I base my learning activities for symbol imagery based on  Seeing Stars by Nanci Bell. This is an excellent resource for any teacher or homeschool parent will a student with weak symbol imagery ability. Please follow my blog and my store for more great materials for struggling readers and writers. Lots of freebies in every post.


Thursday, 19 January 2017

Speech and Language Therapy and Black History Month (with Freebie)

Harriet Tubman Helping Kids with Speech




I normally work with students with Dyslexia and Dysgraphia, but I also help students with speech and language issues. Also, many of my students have English as a second or third language so language is an issue I deal with often. I  wanted to share my new Harriet Tubman Speech and Language Therapy Unit.  Harriet Tubman is truly a woman I respect for her courage and perseverence. The first aspect of the unit is a mini book which features the life of Harriet Tubman in easy decodable language.
I am selling this book by itself in my store, but it comes as a freebie in the Speech and Language Therapy Unit.

The unit cover sequencing and includes Ordinal Numbers and Transition words for retelling.

Then I created 36 game cards which target vocabulary, grammar and phonetic awareness  as well as comprehension and Wh questions for students to answer. They come in color and black and white as well as with and without picture prompts for students at different levels.

The unit covers syllables, rhyme, and articulation goals as well.



There is also an open-ended game which I have included as a Black History Month Freebie 





Please do leave freeback if you decide to download this game.

Hope you find this unit helpful and please subscribe to my blog and follow my store so you don't miss out on great products and more freebies
Wednesday, 18 January 2017

The Best Curriculum to Help Struggling Writers

Systematic


Some students are blessed with the ability to just sit down and write. If they are given a topic, they can sit down and write paragraphs with ease. But for many students writing is a nightmare, they don't know what to write or how to structure their writing. These students  either write very little or they write a lot, but it is a confusing mess. These students  need to be taught a system to get their thoughts out on paper in an organized way. 


Specific

Students who struggle with writing need very specific instructions in order to write well.  Many writing programs give general outlines or ideas on writing, but struggling writers just find this frustrating. They need specific instructions on ways to write sentences, paragraphs and essays and they also need specific guidance on each type of writing ie. narrative, persuasive, expository etc.



Sensory

Just as multi-sensory activities help dyslexic readers read better, multi-sensory strategies help struggling writers write more effectively.One effective technique I use often is making the students highlight the different parts of their paragraph or essay in different colors. 


Three curriculum programs that I like to use the most with struggling writers are Institute for Excellence in Writing, Step up to Writing, and Basic Writing Skills by Judith Hochman. In fact, I combine the strategies of these three fantastic programs when I tutor struggling writers.





I have created a terrific resource for January that focuses on expository paragraph writing.
It combines  the 3 S's using a Power point presentation and correlating printables.  You can purchase it here







If you have a struggling writer who is not ready for expository paragraphs yet you might find this article helpful.


I will be creating more helpful material for struggling writers in the future so subscribe to my blog and follow my store so you don't miss out.