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Parenting Tips for Dyslexic Kids

Helping your dyslexic child learn outside of the classroom can be frustrating. However, it's important to help him build on his reading and writing skills at home, so that he can master the task at school. Dyslexic children have trouble breaking down the written word due to a brain malfunction. Finding new and different ways to teach writing and reading to your child may help him overcome his disability.

Learning Aides for Dyslexia

You can create at-home learning aides for your child so that he can practice his academic skills differently than he does at school. Unique learning aides can also help increase your child's self-esteem and confidence in his academic abilities, and thus, build a stronger student. Below are some ways to encourage learning outside of the classroom:

  • Use a dry erase board. A dry erase board and some colorful markers will get your child excited about spelling. He won't have to keep erasing errors and he can continue trying to spell a word until he gets it right without erasing a hole in his paper. Try a weekly spelling test on the dry erase board and go over the words with your child.
  • Take it to the streets. If it's a nice day and your child wants to play outside, give him some chalk. He can practice spelling and writing in a different environment and have fun with it. If you're at the beach, draw words in the sand with your child and simply "smooth over" misspelled words. Every activity can present a new learning opportunity.
  • Underline letters. If you're correcting your child's homework or going over words on the dry erase board, simply underline the wrong letters in a misspelled word. This will give your child the opportunity to change out those letters for the correct ones. Plus, it shows him that he didn't completely spell the word wrong, only certain parts of it.
  • Pay attention. Make notes of words that your dyslexic child seems to have problems with. You can go over these words together before bed so he gets the hang of it. You can also make a "word book" with your child; include the words he has the most difficulty with. Place the "word book" in your child's study area so he can frequently look over the book or use it as reference when needed.
  • Discover success stories. You can make your dyslexic child feel better about his disability by encouraging his dreams and goals. Famous dyslexics include Babe Ruth, Tom Cruise, Walt Disney, Thomas Edison, and John F. Kennedy. Share information about successful people with your child so that he understands that anything is possible despite his dyslexia diagnosis.

Never give up on your child's academic success, no matter his medical ailment. In fact, a disability such as dyslexia should only encourage him to work harder to achieve his goals. Creating different learning aides outside of the classroom for your dyslexic child will help him realize that learning goes beyond pencil and paper. Encourage learning opportunities in many different settings, but remember everyone needs a break from time to time.