June, 2015
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Should Your Child Work on School Skills Over the Summer or Take a Break?

By: Mark Griffin

It's understandable why parents want their kids to take a break and recharge their batteries. But it's very important to find ways to keep working on reading skills over the summer.  The long vacation doesn't simply hit the "pause" button on reading, math and writing skills. It can actually erode these skills. When it comes to certain kinds of knowledge, kids really do have to "use it or lose it." This is especially true for kids with learning and attention issues.


Here are some thoughts on how to put together a summer learning schedule that reinforces academic skills while still having lots of summer fun.

  • A good tutor who specializes in learning issues may be the single best way to maintain and perhaps increase your child's skills over the summer. Talk with your child about when and where to schedule these tutoring sessions during a summer of fun.

  • Encourage your child to keep a daily journal. Give your child the freedom to choose what to write about, but work with your child to come up with a minimum length for each entry and other details such as correcting misspelled words. And have her share the journal with you each day so she knows it's important to keep up with it.

  • Read the same book as your child and have an informal "book club" discussion. Or watch TV together with the sound off, have your child to read the captions, and pause the show every now and then and discuss what's going on.

  • Cooking is a great way to work on reading and writing. Ask your child to write the grocery list, find items in the store and read the recipe aloud during cooking time.

Tapping into your child's interests is a great way to help your child "smell the roses" and balance having fun with retaining skills. When she returns to school in the fall with her skills intact, she'll feel rested and more confident about the upcoming year. Would you like more information? Click here.


Powerful Images Show What It's Like to Read When You Have Dyslexia  

When he was 18, Dan Britton was failing every subject except science and graphic design. His graphic design teacher suspected something was wrong and took him to be tested. The test results showed that Britton had the reading ability of a 10-year-old and the writing ability of an 11-year-old.

Britton, now a talented graphic designer in the United Kingdom, was diagnosed with dyslexia. Suddenly, all of the previous trouble he had in school made sense.

Britton's new design project aims to show the world what it's like to live with dyslexia. Britton created a typeface that mimics the experience of reading with dyslexia. To create the font, he removed about 40 percent of each letter, including its key characteristic-for example, the cross-bar in the letter "A."

The font is not designed to show you precisely what letters look like to a dyslexic person, but rather to slow normal readers down to the pace of someone with dyslexia and teach them about the experience, figuring out what words the letters form slowly and painstakingly. "It simulates the frustration and the work and the outright embarrassment of reading with disability," Britton says.

Britton says he wanted to tackle dyslexia because it is greatly misunderstand and, even more, miscommunicated. Because dyslexia is an invisible disease - those around you can't tell you have it, or see you experiencing it - "there's no feeling of empathy in the subject of dyslexia. Non-dyslexics can't understand what it's like to be a dyslexic," he says.

He says that if we could do better at addressing the challenges facing dyslexic people, society would certainly benefit. "You could only imagine where the world could be in a few years' time. Maybe we'll have a few more Richard Bransons and a few more Elon Musks," he said.

To read the full article, 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!


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.

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