How I work
To be successful, children must believe that their knowledge can and will grow. I always do everything I can to ensure that the child can listen, be persistent, and achieve.
I believe in making learning a positive experience, so I ensure that each learning challenge is achievable.
When I first start working with a new pupil, I like to find out their exact learning level. I then create a personalised lesson plan that is designed to address your child’s knowledge gaps. In this way, your child can grow from their current level and learn at their own pace, with no peer pressure. A one-to-one approach can be key to advance your child’s learning.
My specialist skills and experience are teaching phonics and reading to very young children.
Phonological awareness skills are important to develop good reading skills, which will help the child manipulate, segment, and blend sounds into words. Phonological awareness is a basis for reading.
Children begin to read by listening to others read aloud, then by recognising sounds in words, sounding words out for themselves, recognising familiar words, and so on. By engaging in wordplay, children learn to recognise patterns among words and use this knowledge to read and build words. Cutting words into “sound bites” e.g., oc /to/pus will help the child learn to read, while also helping with writing too.
I have experience working with children who make slower progress in reading and writing. I also have experience teaching children with processing and comprehension difficulties.
Children who have a limited vocabulary or a “word gap” are disadvantaged since this can impact their entire lives. This child will make slower progress in reading and writing, and consequently achieve lower results in tests. Reading is an important way for children to learn vocabulary. It is more likely that the child will hear and learn a new word by reading than they will in spoken language.
I am very experienced in working with students of all levels and abilities. I can quickly identify and consequently support any needs that impact a student's progress.
Some tactics to help your child with learning include:
- Encouraging your child to select the book they wish to read themselves.
- Encouraging your child to read widely in their spare time, as well as reading aloud.
- Talking to your child, but not over them, and trying to create fun with words.
- Allowing your child to play with language and sometimes get it wrong.
- Retelling the story together with your child to help them finish a comprehension task, or later write the story.
- Ensuring that your child is relaxed, enjoying themselves, and having fun with reading.
Children with better vocabulary have better reading comprehension, and their comprehension improves more over time.
I have the experience to help reluctant writers.
Why may a child be a reluctant writer?
Experience in teaching children with dyslexia.
- A child may have too many ideas. To streamline these ideas, it may be helpful to write them down and let the child choose the idea that they like the most.
- The child may not know how to get started with the writing task. If this is the case, use this framework: who, what, why, where, when, however, because, at the end. These keywords will help your child structure their writing.
Each child with dyslexia is different. Dyslexia often occurs with other Specific Learning Difficulties. Often we think that the needs of a child will be met in the classroom through high-quality teaching and differentiated learning materials. Unfortunately, most schools lack the resources to help these students. Dyslexia can be a challenge, but with effective teaching and good support, each child can and will achieve success and can shine.
One of the well-known consequences of dyslexia is a problem with reading and writing, but children with dyslexia may struggle with confidence. I believe that it is equally important is to help dyslexic learners develop confidence.
I believe that all teaching must be systematic and presented in a logical order from the easy to more difficult ideas. This will help the child gradually build their confidence and learning skills at the same time. It is important to teach the child how to simplify written instructions by highlighting important information. Giving each child enough time to process information is vital.
Experience in teaching children with dyscalculia.
A child can learn quicker when playing games. For example, when learning mathematics, hands-on multisensory methods relying on counters, number lines, sweets, and blocks may be used. By using tangible objects, you are making the maths more real and not too abstract. When discussing the maths task with your child, it is important to ask the child to explain the mathematical concept. If they can explain the concept back to you, then you will know whether the child understands the given mathematical task.
Experience in teaching children with Autism/ ADHD/Dyspraxia.
Dyspraxia is a condition that impacts motor skills and means the child may have coordination difficulties when writing.
Children with dyspraxia will have a problem with balance, and spatial awareness. They may often struggle in school during gym, art classes, or have a problem with handwriting. Dyspraxia can impact attention and memory too. Sometimes the solution is simple. Listening to your child and supporting them is very important. When it comes to helping with handwriting, it might be good to use a wider type of pencil, apply a rubber grip, or, when the child is older, handwriting can be replaced with touch writing.
For children with ADHD, it is important to remain patient. Knowing a child’s strengths, interests and weaknesses is the first step to help them. Being positive, simple, clear, direct, and being able to repeat instructions is very important. The child may need extra time to complete their work. If possible, the activities should stay interactive.
Autism is a condition that impacts the way in which the child can see and understand the world around them. When I work with autistic children, I always refer to them by their first name so that they know who I am referring to. Autistic children may need extra time to understand what I have said and to react.
Children can often become easily frustrated, so we should always monitor their mood. They need plenty of opportunities to use their energy. Structure and routine are very important for reassuring the child that everything is planned and safe and this will help manage anxiety and stress. We need to remember to introduce any changes to routine and structure in advance to help a child prepare for what will happen next.
Experience working with anxiety and depression in children.
Anxiety may manifest as fear or worry, but can also make children irritable and angry. Symptoms of anxiety can also include trouble sleeping, as well as physical symptoms like fatigue, headaches, or stomach aches. Some anxious children keep their worries to themselves and so the symptoms can be missed.
Sometimes children are sad or feel powerless in their school life, and some children feel uninterested in things that they used to enjoy. When children feel persistent sadness and hopelessness, they may be diagnosed with depression.