A variety of exercises and methods are carefully designed to take advantage of how these young children learn.
The activities have the following features:
To heighten their attention
- We use hands on experiences (move, draw, place, pull)
- We use colourful and engaging materials that draw children’s attention.
To guide their efforts
- We encourage constant verbal participation to engage them. (explain and describe what they see.)
- We use constant verbal feedback to outline success and to direct their efforts.
To make sense of abstract symbols. (the alphabet)
- To attach meaning to abstract symbols, we use
pictures and stories.
that form strong associations between the sound and the alphabetic letter. For example, the 's'
resembles a nake.
- We rehearse these letters in isolation and concurrently, in the context of fun drills, familiar
words, and stories.
Why do some children have difficulties reading ?
According to a study published in the July 15, 2002 issue of Biological Psychiatry, dyslexia is caused
by a genetic flaw in the part of the brain used for reading. Bennett Shaywitz and other Yale University
researchers scanned the brains of 144 children – both with and without dyslexia. Both groups took a reading
skills test while measured by magnetic resonance imaging to pinpoint the part of the brain activated by
reading. While non-impaired reading is concentrated in the back of the brain where letters and sounds are
integrated, the researchers found that this area is disrupted in children who are dyslexic. Instead, the
brain activity in dyslexic children is concentrated in the frontal region, which governs articulated speech
and reasoning. This frontal part of the brain is not neurologically specialized at integrating sounds and
visual letters, so these children have difficulty deciphering the code of reading.