‘Teach, believe and succeed’ are my chosen buzz words. Through my specialist teaching and assessment, I aim to give everyone the tools that they need to believe in themselves and succeed in life.
I graduated with a 1st class honours degree in Primary Education in 2002 and have taught in many different schools in London and Devon. My passion has always been teaching reading and writing and Special Educational Needs. I recently completed my Masters in Dyslexia and Specific Learning Difficulties.
However, during my four years at University, no one provided me with any knowledge of dyslexia or how it could impact on a child’s ability to learn. However, it wasn’t until I met my now husband, that I started to discover the difficulties that dyslexics face on a daily basis. I used to find it fascinating that he would take 30 minutes to write one simple postcard, which stated that everything was ‘lovely’, as he could confidently spell that word.
In 2010 when my son started Year 1 I noticed that he started to struggle with literacy and was unable to read any of the basic words being sent home on flashcards or in his reading books. Fear, worry and anxiety crept into my mind as I suspected that he too was dyslexic. After talking to his teachers about my concerns they suggested that he would catch up and that he was still very young, but I knew that my son was intelligent and verbally able and that something was wrong. Yet, I didn’t know how best to support his future learning needs and ensure that he became able to read and write like his friends in the class.
I researched best practise on teaching methods to support dyslexic learners and enrolled myself on the Postgraduate Certificate in Dyslexia and Literacy through Dyslexia Action. As soon as I qualified as a Specialist dyslexia and literacy teacher I began teaching my son and some of his peers, who were also struggling to read and write. Through just a 1 hour session each week the children regained their confidence in their ability to learn, their self-esteem flourished and they were soon reading, writing and smiling once again.
My daughter, who thrived in her Reception class at school, became disenchanted in Year 1 as she struggled to keep up with her friends and she just couldn’t understand why she couldn’t read and write as well as them. Her teacher also advised that she would catch up, but of course she didn’t. As she struggled more at school her confidence plummeted and she became more disengaged and behavioural problems started. I assessed her and of course she is dyslexic too.
Since then I started my business ‘Learning with Dyslexia Ltd’, which enables me to focus solely on the specialist teaching and assessment of dyslexic learners of all ages. I also support many schools and colleges as a consultant by assessing and teaching students, modelling teaching sessions and sharing expertise through training and observations.
I have now successfully taught and assessed over 500 students, ranging in age from 5 years to adults. Each dyslexic person that I meet teaches me more about dyslexia, its positives and possibilities. I’m constantly reviewing and evolving my teaching styles and resources to suit the ways in which they learn.
My research into dyslexia is ongoing, as I find the subject fascinating, and I’m continuing my studies and am currently designing an online programme called ‘Decoding Dyslexia. This is designed to support parents and their amazing dyslexic children aged 5-12 years to discover all the possibilities that dyslexia brings and how to best support any difficulties.