A day of PD …

I’ve spent a long day in PD. I listened. Hard. I even concentrated. Hard. I’m tired … But I need to think about what the big ideas were. What did I learn?

10% of the population have dyslexia. Dyslexia is not funded but is a diagnosed disability in Australia.

Michelle Hutchinson shared her views and experience, profiling children who struggle with dyslexia as children who struggle to read and spell, and are usually creative .. . They are people who “think out of box”and  are solution focussed , but word retrieval and remembering names,dates and other facts are challenges for them.

This means that in a class of 20 children, we should expect that if we were to properly assess the children who had been engaged in intervention for a prolonged period of time  (at least 6 months) and fit the first two of the criteria below (and perhaps any/ some / none of the other criteria), 2 would have Dyslexia.

They :

  •  still  are slow and exude much effort in reading
  • still have poor spelling
  • might also be struggling with written expression and/ or
  • mathematical reasoning or number sense  are challenging
  • have  family history of Dyslexia.
    The Rose Report looks at “Best practice in teaching of early reading and synthetic phonics” and “Provision for children with significant literacy difficulties and the relationship of such targeted intervention programmes with synthetic phonics teaching ” amongst other things.

Dyslexia cannot be diagnosed in children younger than 8 years old. We looked at the image below (Simple view of reading Gough and Tunmer) and learnt how to place children in order to decide what kind of assessment might be required.


Screen Shot 2016-07-26 at 6.38.03 pm.png


I loved the way in which she speaks about standardised testing and the in-depth analysis of tests like the Single Word Spelling Test and how best this analysis can be used. Teachers who over analyse and send children off to self teach spelling based on the analysis might be barking up the wrong tree. Is it better to analyse looking for patterns in errors and organise our teaching, to groups of children, around this?

Many questions come to mind …

  • How do teachers cater for children with reading difficulties in their classes?
  • What will we do differently if suddenly put a label on a child?
  • Do children need to know that they have a disability and understand what it means?
  • Should parents know more about Dyslexia in order to support their children on their journeys?



About Jina Belnick

I am a full time learner - tumbling head first into education and joining my learners on the amazing adventures that we encounter daily at our PYP school in Melbourne, Australia.I am currently working in learning support, feeling the waters and seeing how teachers and learners are best supported, I am a listener and a leader, an inquirer and a follower. I'm loving the ride!
This entry was posted in Jina, Learning, learning support, Uncategorized and tagged . Bookmark the permalink.

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