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25th
Jan 2011

Curriculum for Dyslexia

Visual Learning for Dyslexia Students

This article outlines how subtitled educational videos provide the ideal learning and curriculum teaching environment for children with Dyslexia, and dyslexic students generally.

Visual Learning is defined as “a teaching and learning style in which ideas, concepts, data and other information are associated with images and techniques. It is one of the three basic types of learning styles that also includes kinesthetic learning and auditory learning.”

So while subtitled educational video provides the ideal solution for dyslexia and many special needs and learning difficulties, it is very important to understand that the educational video that is the tool, and it is the way you use the tool, or the technique, that defines how that tool can be use appropriately to cater for specific educational needs. This is less the case when we are talk about providing an education solution for children with Dyslexia simply because the video itself provides the all important option to the textbook, however when we look at improving the reading of the Dyslexic child, it is very important.

It is important to note that we are specifically talking about the use of educational videos that are subtitled, and not just any old educational videos. This is ultimately important because with subtitled educational video each child or student is provided with the choice to watch, to listen to, and/ or to read each presentation. Not only does this mean that each child is able to absorb and process the information that best suites their situation, and their individual abilities. It also means that in each situation, the subtitles can, and should be used to help improve each student’s reading skills.

So in providing curriculum for students with dyslexia, it means that the educational video is used to cater for the needs of the dyslexic child, but it should also be used to help improve their reading abilities.

One reasonably accurate description of Dyslexia is “an impairment in the brain’s processing of information that results in difficulty reading, spelling, writing, and related language skills.”

Therefore in providing a learning solution for the dyslexic student, it is obvious that an alternative way of delivering the necessary curriculum content or learning material, should be one where reading is not required. And video provides that ideal alternative.

For all children the use of video in education and learning is a compelling, interesting and much more fun way of learning. With the introduction of fun and interest, learning becomes much more of an enjoyable experience and therefore much more effective. As a result it motivates and incentivises the child to become more involved with, and engage in, the learning process.

This is exactly the same for the Dyslexic student, but at the same time it provides the child with dyslexia, a lifeline to their education and academic development. It’s fun and interesting, but at the same time it eradicates the need for the textbook by providing the all-important way in which the curriculum content can be delivered to them, irrespective of whatever reading disabilities they may have.

But this is not to say that the student with Dyslexia should ignore their limited reading skills, because in today’s world, having a reasonable ability to read is important because it is such an established means of communication.

So this is why the subtitles on each video should then also be used to improve that child’s reading ability. The subtitled video enables each child to see each word that is used in the presentation, they can also hear what that word sounds like when it is spoken by the presenter. And it also enables them to see and understand the context in which that word is being used.

Zane Education is currently the only provider of educational video that has been specifically developed for the teaching of the K12 curriculum that has included the subtitles with each video. Their online educational video subscription system provides access to the world’s largest online subtitled video library and they provide the following advice for children with Dyslexia.

“Use each video the first couple of times by watching and listening to the presentation. Then use the video with the sound turned off. The purpose now is to engage with the sub-titles. Use the Stop and Start buttons to go through the presentation attempting to read the subtitles. When you encounter a word that you are not sure about, turn the sound back on and listen to how that word sounds. This will also give the student the opportunity to develop an understanding of the context in which each word is used. Once you have understood how that word looks and sounds, then remove the sound once again and proceed on.”

Zane Education is also quick to point out that this style of processing the information, and attempting to improve the child’s reading ability, has another significant advantage. By going back and reusing the video a number of times both with and without sound, helps to reinforce that information in the child’s mind, and it is remembered far more effectively.

It is widely recognized in education that use of educational videos also enables all students to learn at their own speed, which is a significant factor in enabling each child to achieve their greatest potential. This type of learning activity also plays a big part in helping the development of a child’s independent learning skills. Never-the-less it is strongly recommended that if teachers or parents want to see an improvement in the child’s reading skills, that the child is accompanied during the second part of the process by a person whose aim it is to ensure that the reading of the subtitles is carried out and completed in a methodical page-by-page manner, with that person being on hand to discuss what is being read by the child, and asking questions as to the meaning and sounds of different words as they proceed, and making references to the graphics presented on each page.

So in closing, we would encourage all teachers and parents of children with Dyslexia or similar reading difficulties to take a hard look at Zane Education and their very unique library of subtitled educational videos. They currently provide a comprehensive range of online education video titles that teach 260 curriculum topics across 11 subjects. As well as their online educational video subscription service they provide an extensive resource for online testing in the form of online curriculum quizzes for each of those 260 curriculum topics which includes a total of 23,000 curriculum-based questions and quality answers.

Zane takes their work with dyslexic students and children with reading difficulties very seriously and they actively encourage communication with parents and teachers seeking Visual Learning solutions. You can access their website at www.Zaneeducation.com and use their contact page for all your questions. Alternatively you can join them on their FaceBook page where they will actively encourage your questions and participation.

AS A FOOTNOTE: Zane Education is currently upgrading their Education Links page so they invite those of you with education websites and blogs to submit your website and blog addresses for inclusion on our Links page. Reciprocal Links would be greatly appreciated.

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