April, 2015
Spring Cleaning for the Mind!
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Tips to Help Get Children with Learning Differences Organized

By: Lexi Walters Wright

While it might take some effort in the beginning, getting organized can make life easier for kids with learning differences. Here are tips to help your child improve organization skills at home, at school and beyond.

  • Break tasks into chunks: Help your child break school projects or household chores into smaller, more manageable steps.


  • Make checklists and to-do lists: Once your child knows all the steps involved with a particular task, help her add it to an overall to-do list in a place where she'll see it often.


  • Teach calendar and time management skills: Encourage your child to write down important tasks in a digital or paper calendar and estimate how much time each task will take.


  • Establish daily routinesCreate a regular schedule so your child learns what to expect throughout the day.


  • Introduce idea organizers: Show your child how to use outlines, graphic organizers or concept webs to organize ideas for school projects.


  • Use color-coding: Assign colors to each school subject. Suggest that your child use different colored pens when writing and editing.


  • Create fun memory aids: Show your child how to create her own silly sentences, songs, acronyms or cartoons to remember information.


  • Create an organized workspace: Set aside a space at home where your child can work without interruption. Keep school supplies and technology nearby.


  • Do regular backpack audits: Schedule a time each week for your child to clean out and organize her backpack.


  • Help your child think ahead: To make her feel more secure, review plans for the next day with your child before bedtime.


Scrambled Words Could Provide Insight to Help People with Dyslexia

In a new study at the University of Missouri-St. Louis, participants will be exposed to a prime, or sample word, that will be subconscious, so they won't be aware they've seen it. Then, they will see words on a computer screen and identify whether the samples are actual words or made up. Equipment then tracks their brain waves and how quickly participants respond when seeing certain words.

The research measures orthographic processing skills, or participants' abilities to process language. In orthographic processing, people identify a word according to its appearance. Most people read by identifying letters and words with specific sounds.

People with dyslexia have difficulty using sounds to identify letters and words, which makes reading difficult. By using orthographic processing to identify words, people with dyslexia could read more easily by targeting higher orthographic processing skills they have rather than trying to teach them to sound out words.

The research can also track whether people with low literacy skills are as affected by the primes because they may not have been exposed to as many words. Someone with low orthographic skills might not recognize a word that's spelled incorrectly or a word that is made up.

This study could significantly improve the understanding of how different people read by showing how being exposed to print sets up the brain to get information from words very quickly.

For more information on the study, click here

Thank You to Current San Diego Branch of IDA Sponsors 

By: Christa Eilers

Thank you to the current sponsors of the San Diego Branch of the International Dyslexia Association 2014-2015 "Light Up Literacy" fundraising campaign: The Applied Neuropsychology Institute, Banyan Tree Educational Services, e3 Consulting, The Family and Learning Center, Gizmos and Gadgets Kids Lab, Joanie and Leigh Cakes, Kids in Harmony, La Jolla LearningWorks, Learning Ally, Learning Connections, Lotus Learning, Mintz Levin, New Bridge School, SPOT Kids Therapy, Inc., Therapeutic Literacy Center, and The Winston School. 

Thank you all for helping us Light Up Literacy! 

Events in Southern California and Beyond


I DA Tri-Counties Webinar

Date: Thursday, April 23, 2015

Time:  6:00 p.m. - 7:30 p.m.

Conference Title: Assistive Technology Webinar

Location:  Online event

For registration, click here

IDA Los Angeles Conference

Date: Saturday, May 1, 2015

Conference Title:  Language & Learning 2015 (with Featured Keynote Address by Dr.  Louisa Moats, Ed.D)

Location:  University of California, Los Angeles

For information, click here

EdRev 2015

Date: Saturday, April 25, 2015

Time: 9:00 a.m. - 4:00 p.m.

Location:  AT&T Park, San Francisco

For information, click here 

Board of Directors
International Dyslexia Association, San Diego Branch

The San Diego Branch of the International Dyslexia Association (SDIDA) is pleased to present a forum for information to benefit its constituents. It is SDIDA's policy to not recommend or endorse any specific program, product, institution, company, or instructional material, noting that there are a number of such that present the critical components of instruction as defined by IDA's Knowledge and Practice Standards for Teachers of Reading. Any program, product, institution, company,  or instructional material carrying the IDA Recognized seal meets the SDIDA Standards. Opinions expressed in this newsletter and/or via links do not necessarily reflect those of SDIDA.

If you have a recommendation for an article topic, or wish to provide an article in its entirety for consideration to appear in a future issue, please email us.