As a parent of a dyslexic child, all you really worry about on a day to day basis is ensuring that your child are happy, healthy, getting on well at school and having a successful education. However, because your child is dyslexic, the reality is that getting the most out of education can be a challenge – sometimes, regular schooling just can’t offer the specialist help that may be required.
So as a parent, how can you ensure that your dyslexic child gets the best start in life?
One option that many parents might consider is home-schooling. This is a big decision of course, but it can be a good way to ensure that your child gets the level of specialist attention that he needs in order to get the most out of his future education.
There are pros and cons to homeschooling your dyslexic child of course, so how can you make such a decision?
Downsides & Challenges
Taking a dyslexic child out of school and home-schooling them yourself isn’t an easy option – it can be very challenging and requires a lot of patience and understanding.
One of the biggest challenges with a dyslexic child is knowing what to teach and how, you will need to follow certain guidelines (depending on where you live), but you have a lot of flexibility too.
You will need to learn how to teach effectively and how to find or create learning resources that are suitable for the topic and your child’s needs. Remember that generic teach resources are not necessarily going to be suitable for a dyslexic child.
Finally, you will need to devote a lot of time to home-schooling. For many parents, making this decision will mean giving-up or postponing a career in order to stay at home, there is support available, but you will have to be strong and totally dedicated.
What Are The Benefits?
The good news is that if you can overcome these challenges, home-schooling your dyslexic child can be very beneficial to their education, and just a year or two of home-schooling before sending them back to a regular school can make a big difference.
By teaching a class of one, you can give your dyslexic child more focused attention than would ever be possible at a normal school. The entire class can go at his or her pace and if the child is feeling overwhelmed you can take breaks as needed or work whenever you are both feeling the most productive.
As a homeschool parent you can also make learning more interactive and less focused on text-books (a big benefit to your dyslexic child) by taking your child on educational field trips and taking them out.
Finally; home-schooling can be a powerful bonding experience. Every parent would like to spend more time with their children and by home-schooling you can do exactly that. By helping your child to learn and develop you can become closer than ever!
How to get Started
The biggest challenge of home-schooling is learning to become a teacher. Since you are probably not already a trained teacher, you will need to learn to create lesson plans and actually teach an effective lesson to your dyslexic child.
The first step to becoming a home-school teacher is finding out what the local regulations are. Some areas are stricter than others in terms of what you need to do to be allowed to take your child out of school. The easiest way is often to speak to your local council or even school.
Once you have jumped through the relevant hoops you will need to start looking at the curriculum to find out what you actually need to teach and what you are expected to cover and to test on.
It may be worth considering hiring a tutor at first, just to help with lessons and getting started. A good tutor may even be willing to help you to plan lessons for your dyslexic child and it may be possible to work together so that the tutor can teach an hour or two per week whilst you fill in the rest of the time.
If you are lucky there may be a local home-school support group, but if not, there are certainly national ones on-line. Sign up and try to find other home-school parents who you can talk to for advice.
When starting out there is a lot to learn and it can feel somewhat overwhelming, so having this support in place can be very beneficial. Above all else though, you need to be patient and determined – you can make this work for your dyslexic child, and if you do the benefits can be great.
Ricky Peterson is a father of two, a writer and a tutor who writes for UkTutors.com. Thanks for reading this article on homeschooling your dyslexic child.
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