Summer of Balance
Tagged: Academic Ascents, Academic Skills, Breckenridge, Colorado, Decoding Dyslexia, Dillon, Dyscalculia, Dysgraphia, Dyslexia, Frisco, individualized instruction, Learning Styles, Multisensory instruction, Orton Gillingham, Private Tutor, Silverthorne, Summer Fun, Summer Slide, Summit County School District
For most students summer means the absence of school and the presence of camps, sports, art, exploration, and lots of time for play! As a teacher, I totally understand this sentiment, especially when thinking about our students with dyslexia who see school as a daily struggle. Summer is their lifeline, their chance to leave their struggles behind and spend time doing the things they are passionate about and excel in. The critical question for parents is how do you balance your child’s need for a break with their need for support in academics?
There are lots of creative and fun ways to engage your child during summer break. Allow your child the opportunity to explore and further develop their areas of strength and interest. Summer is an opportunity for students with dyslexia to realize their potential in areas that a traditional school setting doesn’t allow for. Our kids are smart and talented so support them in their exploration this summer to experience success for themselves.
Despite the desire that our students may have to take a break from tutoring, reading, writing, spelling and any other skills that give them trouble in school, it is essential to continue to target these areas of challenge. Students with dyslexia cannot afford to “take a break” for the summer because the resulting regression will only further set them back in school. However, you can once again use your child’s areas of strength and interest to engage them in tasks that are more difficult. Have them listen to or read books that target their strengths and interests. The advice from the Yale Center for Dyslexia and Creativity is “to find ways to expose [your child] to the empowering world of words. There are many ways to create a word-rich life, and they are not all dependent on independent reading.”¹ Any instruction should be individualized to their specific needs, provided by a tutor trained to work with students with Dyslexia, and should have all the components that a Dyslexic learner needs: https://dyslexiaida.org/effective-reading-instruction/
If you are looking for something more there are great camps all around the country and right here in Colorado that are well balanced in their approach to targeting the academic, social, emotional, and physical needs of your child. For children ages 7 to 13 I highly recommend Rocky Mountain Camp based in Indian Hills, CO. Older children ages 11-16 who are looking for an overnight camp option can attend Durango Mountain Camp. More information can be found for these respective camps on their websites: http://rockymountaincamp.org/ and http://durangomountaincamp.com/
¹Redford, Kyle. “Summer Fun.” Summer Fun * The Yale Center for Dyslexia & Creativity. The Yale Center for Dyslexia & Creativity, n.d. Web. 21 June 2016. <http://dyslexia.yale.edu/PAR_summerfun.html>.