**Warning** soppy post alert! Proud mummy gets mushy!!!
The word ‘proud’ isn’t strong enough to describe how I feel about K’s latest school report. It was just an end of term brief really, stating how much they have progressed, attitude to learning and where they are in relation to what is expected for their age, in table format with no airs or graces.
Since school had stepped up a notch in year 5 and she was officially diagnosed dyslexic with attention deficit, K’s confidence had taken a knock and my once confident, bouncy and enthusiastic girl was struggling to progress. She has always been a ‘teacher pleaser’ so I knew that she wanted to do well, it just seemed so unfair that she had to put in twice as much work than everyone else to reach the same goal and as she was getting older, she was realising that too. Where some children (her sister included) can simply look at a list of words, write them out once and get them all right, she can spend fifteen minutes each evening for a week, with ten words, using various methods to learn them and still only retain eight out of the ten! We’ve been told the the new curriculum is weighted heavily on spelling and that there are no concessions for dyslexic children in the year six SATS, so the pressure has really been on to try to bring K up to speed. She has had a specialist tutor for over a year now and we’ve recently started with a learning difficulties, touch-typing group, both of which have been amazing at building K’s confidence and facilitating her learning. I knew that she was making improvements but I also know that there is no quick-fix and that real progress would take time. I was therefore completely blown away by the extent of her progression, to the point of being reduced to tears! (Tears are something I do not shed lightly- the children didn’t know what to do!) Not only was her attitude excellent but her progress was beyond expectations in both reading and writing, with her level being above that for her age in reading! Only just over a year ago, her reading age was way below her age which was one of the main reasons for suspecting dyslexia, so to hear that she is now above where she should be, in such a short space of time, made me burst with pride!
K has worked so hard and gone through so much over the past year, she has more than earned her reward of success. Her confidence has grown again and her talent and love of creative writing continues to impress. Unfortunately, she is still only at the beginning of her journey and there will be hurdles put in her way in the future, but for now, we are simply pleased to know that there is light at the end of the tunnel and we are, at last, on the right road to getting there.
As a parent of a child with learning difficulties, I’ve found this process more than a little frustrating at times. J has been more sympathetic to the way K learns as he has similar difficulties himself. It’s taken most of the past year for me to really get to grips with how K’s brain works and I don’t think I’ve even really scratched the surface! There is however, only so much you can do to help and provide support, the rest is up to them.
Do you have a child with learning difficulties? How have you found the journey so far with regards to resources available to you and support from your child’s school or local groups/ tutors? I’d love to hear about how you have helped you child overcome difficulties like dyslexia.