It takes a lot of courage to undertake a dyslexia program as an adult. The last few weeks I had the pleasure of working with a female in her late thirties. She is smart and successful; but was feeling overwhelmed in her role as a coordinator of many areas of a company. There was a lot of listening involved in her role and many emails, back and forth between various people. She came to me feeling that she could not articulate herself well; she couldn’t understand her emails easily and would get bogged down when trying to reply. She would sit in front of her screen, feeling blank.
We spaced the program out over more than a month, working together for a day at a time, once a week. As a result of this, she had time to try out her new tools and methods in her real job and come back with real life experiences to work on.
It was wonderful. She has learned to use her tools so well. She can calm herself down, centre herself and get focused. She feels that her emails have been more to the point. She knows what outcome she requires and can articulate herself well enough, to achieve this. She has methods for attacking reading no matter how complex. Her spelling and pronunciation are improving, with ongoing work in this area she will continue to improve.
She is doing follow up work mastering the words through clay… We will catch up in her ongoing review sessions.
I work as a Davis Dyslexia Facilitator. I often come across people that hate maths. I on the other hand have always loved maths. It kept my focus, it made sense and it had a right or wrong answer. Many people unfortunately, find that maths is like a foreign language. No matter how easy people tell them it is, it just seems hard.
I remember the first time I came across the Davis Maths Mastery program during my training in New Zealand. I was so excited. I was buzzing! The program seemed ingenious. Every aspect of maths was covered simply and logically. Each step built on the previous and it made a lot of sense. I knew I could use it to help people that struggle with Maths.
Since then I have worked with many people doing the Davis Maths program. Most have had some level of dyscalculia. The funny thing is quite a few have been quite brilliant! But just struggled a bit with certain aspects of doing maths.
Most clients that have dyscalculia have missing concepts - they are not good with sequences, time, maybe they are disorganised. The Davis Maths Mastery Program always starts with the foundation concepts of Change, Consequence, cause/effect, before/after, time, sequence and order/disorder. These concepts are the basic concepts for Maths and funnily enough for life. Ron Davis, who researched and developed these concepts over many years – is such a genius for having discovered these concepts and presenting them in their simplest forms. Everyone who does the Davis Maths Mastery program benefits from doing these Basic Concepts. We investigate each concept in real-life scenarios. Then we create an example from Clay, then the person teaches it to themselves.
The example below is showing ice turning to water as result of applying heat to it. This was an experiment that we created, observed, timed and photographed in its various stages of change.
My young client is showing how the cause of the ice melting, is similar to the cause of the maths equation of 2 becoming 1, by taking 1 away from it. My clients is pointing with the arrow to the cause of the ice melting and has circled the cause of the maths change.
Following the Basic concepts, we address the language of Maths. Some people are confused by the language of maths – this is similar to dyslexia where certain ‘terminology’ is difficult to fully comprehend. When a person creates a definition from clay for the maths-term, it seems to make sense. Maths terms could be - add, subtract, multiply, equals, perimeter, circumference, radius etc. Below is an example of my young client's representation of the term ‘add’. She is showing how adding an ingredient to a cake mix, is similar to maths addition.
The Maths program progresses by looking at various aspects of maths in a logical fashion, introducing each topic one step at a time. We are always looking for true understanding, not memory; so that the person is empowered and can figure out maths rather than simply memorise it. Things such as place value, fractions, decimals, multiplication are addressed so the person can gain confidence.
The young girl whose photographs are being used was amazingly bright. Despite this, she was struggling at school and did not like maths. After a fun, intensive program spent together – where I could barely keep up with this brilliant girl – I received the following feedback from her mother.
She reported that the Davis Maths Mastery Workshop had been awesome for her daughter. She had become confident and was hoping to be in the top maths group soon! This was such a turn-around from the previous term, when she was lacking confidence and feeling stupid.
The Davis Maths Mastery program is not tutoring. It addresses the foundation concepts for maths and results in the client being ready to catch-up on the maths they have missed during their years of confusion. Dependent on the age of the client and the level of dyscalculia, it may take some time for them to catch up to grade level. However, in my experience, all people that undertake the Davis Maths Mastery Program, experience an immediate improvement in their ability to understand maths and their confidence around maths.
A while ago, I had the pleasure of working with a 7-year-old boy named Alan. He was the son of two University Professors. These highly academic people could not understand how their extremely bright son was unable to read. Somehow, the dad found himself in my office. He admitted to being there somewhat reluctantly, as the ‘alternative’, Davis Dyslexia Program was not very well known and didn’t use conventional methods.
Alan was a bright, chatty boy, but was lacking confidence because he could not read. In fact, during our consultation, he was unable to read one sentence, without extreme difficulty.
Alan and I embarked on the Davis Dyslexia Program together. We had an enjoyable and successful 5-day program. Alan was open to the experience, curious and enthusiastic. Dad took 2 days off work to observe and participate in the training portion of the program. Alan certainly improved during the 5 days and gained in confidence.
One week after the program I received the following…
' My wife and I were both a little nervous going into the course as we did not know what to expect and what, if anything you would be able to do. I said today, however, we particularly liked that you were stripping everything back to the basics and rebuilding from there -- we both know from our own work that the foundations are crucial and once these are taken care of everything flows from there.
Since last week I think that Alan's reading has improved markedly - and he is certainly much happier and more confident. Alan's writing today blew me away as I have never seen him write to much and so quickly -- or with such enthusiasm. It was lovely to watch. Thank you.’
Over the course of the subsequent months, Mum and Dad religiously completed the follow-up work (making the clay models for the spelling, pronunciation and meaning of the sight-words. They also did 10 minutes of reading, using the relaxed Davis Dyslexia Reading methods every day). Alan and his parents benefitted from their commitment to the program and the follow-up work.
This was confirmed when 2 years later I heard from Alan’s Dad. He sent the following note:
‘Alan’s reading improved dramatically after the Davis Dyslexia program and he is now a different boy. He is happily reading 600 page Harry Potter books in 2 days and his confidence has sky rocketed. Thank you so much for what you did for him.’
That was so fab to hear. I admire the tenacity and belief of Alan and his parents in bringing about this change. Apparently many years later he is absolutely flying!
Ever felt like this? If you’re dyslexic there could be a very simple explanation for this.
Dyslexics have a lower than normal threshold for confusion. What does that mean? It means that for some people – ‘word thinkers’, - the threshold for confusion is quite high. When they were young they would often come across things that they were unsure about and couldn’t figure out. They got used to that feeling. It is called confusion. Confusion is simply the opposite of certainty.
For picture-thinking people – which simply means that their imagination works like a movie or a memory of real life. Ah, you thought everyone thought like that didn’t you! Well they don’t. Apparently some people think predominantly in words. Such as when they think about a tree, they don’t ‘see’ a real tree in their mind; some people see the word ‘t-r-e-e’ or simply think the word tree. Who knew! I’d love to get inside their mind for a minute, just so I can completely understand it. Then I’d want to get out again, as it must be quite boringJ
Picture thinkers have a lower than normal threshold for confusion, because when they were young and they came across real things, they could figure them out – what they were, what they could be used for etc. They simply looked at the thing, then sort of looked at it from different angles in their mind, until they recognised it, or figured it out. They were good at it! But when they went to school because they were not use to being confused, they would instantly try to understand, but sometimes we can’t. We need to wait to get more information – we need to listen for longer, or read on to get more information.
For the dyslexic, it is difficult to read on, or to listen for longer… Why is that? They get disorientated. They go over things in their mind, or lose track when reading, or lose interest, go blank, get distracted, frustrated etc. This is disorientation. What is needed is a way to recognise it and a way to overcome it. Focus on Learning uses Davis Dyslexia Correction methods for correcting disorientation. We then work on methods to remove the confusions that are triggering disorientation. “I’ve tried!” I hear you saying. But not like this. The Davis Dyslexia Correction methods are simple. They can work every time. They will give you certainty, or methods to create certainty! This is what dyslexics need to feel confident. If you’re interested, contact Bets for a chat or to arrange a consultation.
Over the years I've worked with many dyslexic clients. Usually it is an intelligent person that feels frustrated because they are unable to make sense of what they're reading and their spelling is atrocious.
Recently, I worked with a particularly bright man in his 40s. He made his alphabet from Clay and he mastered it and de-triggered all confusions with it, so he had certainty. He was intrigued when I said to him, that with this alphabet he could spell and write any words he liked. He was astounded by the power that if he felt from this. As we proceeded to master the punctuation symbols and to identify how these symbols would be used in writing, the sense of empowerment grew and his confidence grew with that.
As we mastered the trigger words, such as ‘it’ and ‘the’; my client was amazed that these words actually had a meaning and how they influenced the sentence. Prior to this, he hadn't really noticed most of these words, he might accidentally skip them or didn't think they served any function.
This client went on to do continued education in marketing and felt that he could write more accurately and could read and comprehend more easily. Using the tools that he learned and the simple techniques that he adopted, he managed to overcome years of frustration. His confidence grew and he understood how to reach his true potential. Feedback from the Marketing course was that his unique perspective was particularly interesting in the online forums, to which he contributed. This is the true Gift of Dyslexia. Once you remove the problems the gifts can be exposed.
With the methods and techniques that are gained through Davis Dyslexia Programs at Focus on Learning in Sydney, you can improve your confidence and performance. If you’d like to overcome problems with reaching your potential, call me for a chat or email to make an appointment for a consultation.
Dyslexia Correction Program, Sydney, Australia
Davis Dyslexia Correction programs are fun, easy solutions to dyslexia or learning difficulties. Eliminate the issues associated with dyslexia and allow the gifts to blossom.