ASK Annual Seminar Series

How Dyslexics Learn

As many as 10% of children experience dyslexic difficulties. Dr. Saunders will explore the difficulties that underpin dyslexia and how these impact on learning, but also the potential learning strengths of the dyslexic individuals.

Practical examples will be given of teaching techniques utilising these strengths to overcome the weaknesses. Golden rules of dyslexia teaching, including multisensory teaching and dyslexia friendly classroom teaching will be explored.

Course objectives

  • Understanding what underlies dyslexic learning
  • Understanding how to teach the way dyslexics learn

Paula Frederica Hunt, M. Ed., Ph. D.

Paula is owner and principal consultant of DED – Disability, Education and Development – Lda. Paula is an experienced teacher of students with special educational needs, both in special and inclusive classrooms. Paula was a teacher and special education program director in the USA, for close to 20 years. Paula also lectured in undergraduate and master’s levels courses in regular teacher education programs in the USA, on subjects related to students with exceptional learning needs. Her dissertation work focused on the knowledge, skills and attitudes needed for regular education teachers to ensure ALL students learn in inclusive environments. Paula has been an expert consultant on Inclusive Education with UNICEF Regional Office for CEECIS, and has provided capacity development related to Inclusive Education and children with disabilities in various countries in Europe and Central Asia.

Practical details

Thursday, 12th November, 2015 (SMARTER Planning for Academic Diversity)
18.30h-21h30 – Registration at 18h
Webster University, LLC Hall, Commons Rm
Route de Collex 15, Bellevue, GENEVA

Saturday, 14th November 2015 (Universal Design for Learning)
10.00h-15.00 – Registration at 9.30h
ZIS – Lower School,
Steinacherstrasse 140, 8820 Wadenswil, ZURICH

Fees: ASK members CHF195, Non-members CHF225, Door CHF275

Raising the Achievement of Low Prior Attainers

This practical and interactive workshop offers solutions to raising the achievement of students with age appropriate thinking but who have low prior attainment due to weak basic skills. A range of evidence based approaches will be presented which help individuals without always needing to give individual help – an important consideration when working across the range of ability and need found in most European classrooms. The importance of compensating for poor working memory will also be addressed in the form of strategies to create “memory lite” situations that accelerate reading for meaning, spelling jargon words and getting ideas down on paper. These strategies have been carefully selected to operate effectively in classrooms throughout Europe, including the second/additional language settings found in European and International-schools.

Course Objectives:

  • Engage with and practice a range of evidence based approaches which raise the
    achievement of low prior attainers
  • Appreciate the impact of poor working memory on learning and develop strategies
    which promote achievement despite poor recall
  • Gain confidence in their ability to notice smart students with weak basic skills and
    adjust teaching in order to raise achievement

Paula Frederica Hunt, M. Ed., Ph. D.

Paula is owner and principal consultant of DED – Disability, Education and Development – Lda. Paula is an experienced teacher of students with special educational needs, both in special and inclusive classrooms. Paula was a teacher and special education program director in the USA, for close to 20 years. Paula also lectured in undergraduate and master’s levels courses in regular teacher education programs in the USA, on subjects related to students with exceptional learning needs. Her dissertation work focused on the knowledge, skills and attitudes needed for regular education teachers to ensure ALL students learn in inclusive environments. Paula has been an expert consultant on Inclusive Education with UNICEF Regional Office for CEECIS, and has provided capacity development related to Inclusive Education and children with disabilities in various countries in Europe and Central Asia.

Practical details

Monday, 19th January, 2015
18.30h-21h30 – Registration at 18h
ZIS – Lower School,
Steinacherstrasse 140, 8820 Wadenswil, ZURICH

Tuesday, 20th January, 2015
18.30h-21h30 – Registration at 18h
Webster University, LLC Hall, Commons Rm
Route de Collex 15, Bellevue, GENEVA

Fees: ASK members CHF195, Non-members CHF225, Door CHF275

Working memory, executive functioning and meta-cognition: Strengths and weaknesses in individuals with dyslexia

Description/Outline

This seminar will discuss differences and similarities between individuals with and those without dyslexia. It will focus mainly on research looking for differences in children and adults, but will also consider some of the practical applications of finding individual differences within both populations. Given the focus on dyslexia, much of the discussion will be relevant to the development of reading; and, although the discussion will concentrate on work performed in the English language, there will also be a consideration of learning to read across difference languages. Overall, the seminar will focus more on higher-level functioning associated with working memory rather than basic recall skills. The area of training that the current work suggests may be particularly useful is that related to meta-cognition – helping individuals to understand how to learn, as well as how to plan. Although individual differences within the groups studied mean that these strategies may not be appropriate for all individuals, they should add to our understanding of specific learning difficulties and provide addition tools with which to support learning.

Objectives

  • Increase understanding of the potential differences in working memory and executive functioning between those with and those without dyslexia, and how these differences might influence learning to read.
  • Develop background knowledge to support successful learning through the enhancement of planning skills and increasing awareness of how to learn.
    Further recognition of individual differences and how these can impact on learning.

Prof. John Everett

John Everett is a Professor of Education in the College of Education, University of Canterbury, New Zealand. Before moving to NZ, he lectured in Psychology at the Universities of Wales and Surrey in the UK. Currently, he lectures primarily on postgraduate courses in inclusion and special education, and on reading and writing acquisition. He also supervises PhD students in research related to learning difficulties, additional language learning and cross-language/orthography comparisons. This work has led to his involvement in many research projects across the world, particularly those looking at ways to assess and support students with dyslexia from different language backgrounds.

Practical details

Monday 23rd March, 2015
18.30h-21h30 – Registration at 18h
ZIS – Lower School,
Steinacherstrasse 140, 8820 Wadenswil, ZURICH

Tuesday 24th March, 2015
18.30h-21h30 – Registration at 18h
Webster University, LLC Hall, Commons Rm
Route de Collex 15, Bellevue, GENEVA

Fees: ASK members CHF195, Non-members CHF225, Door CHF275

The Dyscalculia Solution: Teaching Number Sense

Dyscalculia is a specific learning difficulty affecting the acquisition of numerical skills. It is estimated that dyscalculia affects about 5% of the population. A far larger number of people, while not dyscalculic, fail to acquire the basic numerical skills required to function as citizens. Whatever the cause of low numeracy it is essential that these difficulties are identified and addressed. The solution is to use a structured, multi-sensory approach to teach all pupils to understand numbers so that they can use them to solve problems.
Patricia will outline what it means to have a concept of number and why difficulties may occur. The focus of the course will be on what to teach and how to teach it in order to develop knowledge and reasoning skills. Thebuilding blocks of numerical competency are: the concept of number, the four operations, and place value. This will be an interactive session in which delegates try some of the activities discussed.

Course Objectives:

Understanding how to  use a structured, multi-sensory approach to teach numeracy
Understanding the importance of developing reasoning skills with small numbers so that knowledge can be generalized to larger numbers

Patricia Babtie

Patricia Babtie teaches children and adults with numeracy learning difficulties, as well as conducting training for teachers. She is particularly interested in devising ways to integrate SEN interventions into classroom teaching. Patricia and Jane Emerson are co-authors of the books The Dyscalculia Assessment and The Dyscalculia Solution: Teaching number sense. These books make the ideas and techniques developed at Emerson House in London accessible to teachers and parents. Emerson House is a specialist centre for pupils with dyslexia, dyspraxia and dyscalculia. Both Jane and Patricia work with Brian Butterworth, Emeritus Professor of Cognitive Neuropsychology at University College London, to try to incorporate the findings from educational neuroscience into teaching. They are also collaborators on the project ‘Digital interventions for dyscalculia and low numeracy’ run by Professor Diana Laurillard, London Knowledge Lab, Institute of Education.

Practical details

Monday 4th May, 2015
18.30h-21h30 – Registration at 18h
Webster University, LLC Hall, Commons Rm
Route de Collex 15, Bellevue, GENEVA
Register for the Geneva session

Tuesday 5th May, 2015
18.30h-21h30 – Registration at 18h
ZIS – Lower School,
Steinacherstrasse 140, 8820 Wadenswil, ZURICH
Register for the Zurich session

Fees: ASK members CHF195, Non-members CHF225, Door CHF275

Past Seminars

  • Arithmetical Disorders in Dyslexia
    By Brian Butterworth, Emeritus Professor of Cognitive Psychology, University College London
  • Supporting Children with Working Memory Problems in the Classroom
    by Professor Susan Gathercole, Medical Research Council Cognition and Brain Sciences Unit, Cambridge
  • Addressing the Effects Sensory and Perceptual Dysfunction on a Child’s Learning
    By Lois Addy, Specialist Lead SpLD, Children & Young People Services, Northallerton County
  • The Resilient Child: Empowering Our Children with the Gift to Bounce Back, Bound Forward and Flourish
    by Laurence van Hanswijck de Jonge, Psychologist, Resilience and Positive psychology
  • Bringing It All Together – The use of resources for pupils with Specific Learning Difficulties
    By Barbara Hunter, Director, Reachout International, SpLD consultant and trainer