convention Archives - Lexercise

The Case for Audiobooks

Some people will argue that listening to a book does not have the same benefits as reading it yourself. That is true, but just because it does not have the same benefits does not mean it is any less effective.

A popular model of reading is called “The Simple View (Gough & Tumner)” which says that there are two fundamental processes contributing to reading:

  1. decoding
  2. language processing

“Decoding” refers to figuring out words from print, but “language processing” refers to the same mental processes you use for oral language. They are both equally important, and language processing is worked on when listening to a book.girl with earphones

Audiobooks are especially useful for children with dyslexia. When reading is not their favorite thing to do, the next best tactic is to subject them to as many words as possible audibly. They may not be able to decode words as well on the page but they will be able to use them in their everyday conversation.

Another reason why audiobooks are good for children with reading disabilities is that usually, they have superior oral comprehension and high vocabulary. Audiobooks will expose them to complex words, storylines, and concepts that they otherwise would sacrifice by only reading books at their reading level.

Audiobooks will allow children to have a positive relationship with storytelling. They will gather all of the same information without all of the frustration. Listening to audiobooks is not cheating.

You can become a subscriber to audiobooks through one of our partners, Learning Ally.

If your child has trouble with reading skills, visit our website to learn more about what we can do to help.

Dyslexic Advantage in Entrepreneurship

How to Correct Your Child Without Discouraging them (31)Dyslexics tend to go through life unconventionally. They have to come up with alternative routes to garner successful results– and often by themselves. They regularly deal with adversity and build up resiliency.

This is why dyslexics excel in entrepreneurship, the dyslexic advantage.

In small businesses, almost nothing goes as planned and the likelihood of failure is high. Dyslexics learn from an early age that the odds are stacked against them and they must think creatively to surpass their barriers. Those without a learning disability may not have this same learning curve as a child which can lead to being risk adverse.

planning-meetingJulie Logan, a professor of entrepreneurship at the Cass Business School in London compiled a report regarding dyslexia in business. She found that 35 percent of entrepreneurs identified themselves as dyslexics in America. She also found that dyslexics are more likely to delegate authority and to excel in oral communication and problem solving and were twice as likely to own two or more businesses.

James Banister, a successful CEO has discovered that being dyslexic has advantages in business.

“Its strengths are ones which are particularly useful in building a strong company – problem-solving abilities, strong reasoning and being able to picture how circumstances will evolve,” he says in an interview with The Guardian. “I consciously focus on the wider picture and likely consequences, for example in formulating my business strategy. Dyslexia doesn’t impede my ability to see and analyze things – I may simply see them differently from other people.”

Lexercise provides children with the tools they will need to be successful in the real world, helping with the “school stuff” so they can go on and build upon their natural talents.


Teaching Dyslexic Students: A Guide

How to Correct Your Child Without Discouraging them (11)Unfortunately, public school educators are usually overwhelmed with the amount of children in their class so they cannot take the time to alter their techniques for everyone. They are forced to stick with teaching styles that will help the majority of students. But as a parent, you’re only interested is in one student– you’re own. Here are some things you can discuss with your child’s teacher in order for him or her to get the most out of their classroom experience.

  • Ask the teacher if they can provide a handout of their lesson for your child to reference during the teachings. This way they can follow along with visual cues, and they can go back to the outline when they get home. The information is more likely to go from short term memory to long term memory.
  • Ask the teacher to check if your child has written their homework down correctly. Add that it would be helpful to make sure that your child has the appropriate worksheets and books needed at the end of the day.
  • Tell your child to take down the number of some of their friends. This way they can become homework buddies and help each other if one has forgotten what the homework tasks were. Make sure these numbers are stored in a safe place. If your child is too young to get phone numbers, ask the teacher for some parents’ phone numbers.
  • Ask the teacher to use the board to communicate messages and day to day classroom activities instead of sending them verbally. This will benefit all students by adding a visual element to tasks that need to be remembered.
  • 13584535514_c2bb726231When your child gets home, work with them to create a to-do list for the evening. Do this with the intent of eventually having them create their own to-do list without assistance.
  • Ask the teacher to make sure your child sits at the front of the classroom. This way distractions will be minimized and it will be easy for the teacher to see if your child is struggling.

In addition to these tips, check out what Lexercise has to offer your child here. We guarantee a grade level increase within the first two months or we pay for the third. Don’t be discouraged, there is help for your child!

Harnessing Stress for Student Success

Making Stress Work for Students Unfortunately, stress will always be a part of a student’s life– even more so when the student has a reading disability. But, what if your child harnessed their stress to make it work in their favor? Kelly McGonigal, a health psychologist, and lecturer at Stanford University recently presented a TedTalk explaining how to do just that.

At a recent “Learning and the Brain” conference McGonigal said, “In a number of situations, accepting and embracing the stress instead of trying to calm down helped students to do better.”

The physical side effects stress produces can often make students underperform. McGonigal calls that reaction a “threat response” to stress, but says if teachers can help students have a different response. She calls this positive response to stress a “challenge response,” which includes the realization that the student has the resources to handle the situation.

McGonigal makes sure to mention that prolonged “threat response” stress can have negative effects on health, and suggests three intervention techniques to help students change their approach to stress and create resiliency for dealing with anxiety.


Caring for others builds resiliency against stress

kid meditatingThe biological reaction to stress naturally includes a desire to connect with others. Focusing on social relationships and closeness can dramatically reduce the harmful negative effects of stress.

Purpose in life reduces stress

Ask your child what they love to do, and support their hobbies. Remind them how that activity makes them feel and reward them for their interest and determination.

Focus on how stress can help students grow

McGonigal makes the point that if you are able to look back on your life and tell yourself a story about your stress that includes how you learned from it, it helps to create a narrative of strength, learning, and growth.

The Orton-Gillingham method focuses on building students up and harnessing the “good stress” that McGonigal speaks to. If you would like to set up a consultation with one of our trained therapists, you can visit this page on our website.


Positive Ways to Correct Your Child

How to Correct Your Child Without Discouraging themDyslexia is a frustrating and confusing disorder for children to deal with during the formative school years. They may develop some confidence issues, issues that should not be solidified by his or her parent. A parent’s job is
to encourage a child to do their best, not to highlight what they do wrong.

That being said, don’t sweat the small stuff. Don’t worry about menial tasks that they do not complete with ease, their job is to focus on their reading and spelling skills, not their coloring skills. Examples of tasks you should leave alone are erasing pencil markings completely, using scissors correctly and coloring inside the lines.

These tasks may seem like they are important in elementary school, but you know that they won’t matter much in the real world– and they will figure it out when they need those skills. Chances are, you will be correcting your child more than you would an average student; so be mindful not to overwhelm them with instruction.12779343884_3fb3122e0a_o

That being said, the way you go about corrections is very important to your child’s educational career. Here are some helpful replacements for phrases you may feel you need to use.

  • “This is easy” —> “I know you can do this”
  • “Get it together and just learn to do it” —-> “Let’s take a brain break and try again in a few minutes”
  • “You are not applying yourself” —-> “Can you explain your process to me?”
  • “Try harder” —-> “Take your time, I’m proud of your effort”
  • “You knew it yesterday” —-> “Let’s think about how we did this yesterday”

Though your intentions may be coming from a place of love, you still have to be careful how you talk to your child when helping them with their homework. You may forget what you say by the next day, but your child will likely carry it with them to their next tasks.

Lexercise therapists are great at partnering with parents to give them tips on how to support your child throughout the week. You can schedule a free consultation with one of our therapists to learn more about our therapy program.