What is it?
The Dyslexia Tool Kit is an easy to use handbook. It’s a collection of tools and techniques designed so tutors, teachers, and parents can help people with dyslexia, or any reading difficulty, learn to read. While there were dyslexia systems and programs already available, they tended to be very expensive, time consuming, and complex, and many ignored most or all of the dyslexia research conducted over the last 20 years. The Dyslexia Tool Kit tools are described and explained in the book Dyslexia Tool Kit for Tutors and Parents: what to do when phonic isn’t enough
. Schools and organizations can also arrange for hands-on Educator’s Workshops
Phonemic-awareness and phonics based reading programs abound. These are effective for many people, even many dyslexic people, and the Dyslexia Tool Kit
does not attempt to revisit what these programs have already covered. Instead, the Dyslexia Tool Kit
targets students for whom a phonics based approach is not the most effective route. These tools bypass the “sound decoding” step that stymies many dyslexic readers, and uses instead the strong pattern-recognition skills which many dyslexics possess.
Also, many phonics based programs are expensive and time consuming. The Dyslexia Tool Kit presents techniques that can be learned and used quickly, one at a time, in any order, with minimal prep time for the educator. All suggested materials are readily available and inexpensive
Who can use it?
You don’t need an education degree to use the tools. The tools are based on the extensive research done over the last few decades, but they are presented in an easy to use and understand format, giving parents a hands-on means of successfully taking charge of their child’s reading education.
How much training will I need?
Educators and parents are more likely to use a tool that doesn’t require a huge amount of time to learn, or a large expenditure to buy. Teachers don’t have time to incorporate a complex alternative reading curriculum into their already packed classroom time. The Dyslexia Tool Kit is inexpensive, fast and easy to learn, and requires minimal prep time. The mix and match nature of the tools makes the Tool Kit highly accessible to educators or busy parents. The tools work for any struggling reader, regardless of a dyslexia diagnosis, and the tools can be adjusted to any level K-12.
What do I have to buy?
All you need is one book. Reading programs can cost a school $100,000! Even individual programs designed for tutors or parents use can easily run $500 or more. And most require computers or iPads for each student on top of that. Results are seldom exciting. Yet, research is now available which informs simple techniques using any printed material as well as highly effective use of the text-to-speech technology available on iPhones, iPads, Kindles, etc. to launch even older non-readers into the literacy stream. Most students already have access to some form of technology which can be used for reading. When taught to use it correctly, reading scores and therefore all academic scores go up. About 10% of students are identifiable as dyslexic. These tools can set them free to soar academically. But dyslexic students are not the only ones who will benefit. The tools taught in the book will also raise reading ability for the 40% of students who struggle with grade-level reading comprehension. The more a student reads, the higher his/her vocabulary level. Higher vocabulary results in higher test scores and better comprehension. Higher test scores predict better post-school outcomes for students and help schools reach target goals. Better reading is better for everyone.
How could these tools help my school?
Reading comprehension/vocabulary is a core standards benchmark at every grade level and in every subject. Even math scores improve when reading improves. At least 10% of students exhibit identifiable dyslexia, while 40% struggle with grade level reading speed or comprehension (Marion Blank, The Reading Remedy, p.2). Improving reading improves academic success.
What is presented in a Dyslexia Tool Kit Workshop?
The Workshops are hands-on half day or full day sessions where parents and educators can learn how to use the tools from the Dyslexia Tool Kit. Workshops are suitable for teachers, administrators, home-schooling parents, and any other group who wants to help students who struggle with reading speed and comprehension. The 24 tools in the book, Dyslexia Tool Kit for Tutors and Parents, are explained, discussed, and demonstrated. The first 12 tools are covered in the half day workshop and all 24 tools are covered in the full day workshop.
Who are the workshop presenters?
All of the workshops are taught by one or both of the co-authors of Dyslexia Tool Kit for Tutors and Parents: what to do when phonic isn’t enough: Yvonna Graham, M.Ed., and Dr. Alta E. Graham.
How are the workshops structured?
The Dyslexia Tool Kit is introduced and an overview given to the entire group. Each tool is demonstrated and explained, with reference to relevant research. Participants then work in groups to practice the techniques under the direction of the presenter. Half-day workshops last 3-4 hours and full-day workshops last 6-8 hours, including the Q&A time. Presenters bring all necessary supplies and do not require any technology in order to present.