Why does my child have to have tuition before he can get a dyslexia diagnosis? 

Some children's reading difficulties do not stem from dyslexia.  Sometimes they may have been ill or have had a number of ear infections as a child.  Others have shifted schools a number of times, resulting in disruptions to their learning. Other students simply learn at a different pace or style from that which is being taught in the classroom.

For a number of students, their problems originate from the school's choice of a poor reading or spelling program or from ineffective teaching.   
By having six months intensive targeted tuition using a recognised and effective intervention program first, it is possible to differentiate those students / adults who are a casualty of limited schooling and those whom do actually have dyslexia.  
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 My child has problems with maths and needs hands-on experiences.  How can this be done online? 

Using concrete materials is vital for children to develop an understanding of Maths.  It helps them create a visual image of what numbers or shapes look like, what the magnitude of numbers looks like and how our place value system works. It is a good idea to obtain (second hand is OK) some manipulatives for your child to handle during the sessions.  Your tutor will suggest which ones are needed for your child.
However, unlike five years ago when there were not a lot of online maths manipulatives available, there are now many high quality resources available to teachers.  Your tutor will also use these and enable your child to access her computer to use them too.  These tools will help your child to visualise concepts that cannot be covered with the other resources you have and still have that 'hands on' experiences even though they are working over the internet. 
  

My child has poor 'Working Memory'.  What does this mean for his/her schooling? 

 Psychologists have known for a long time about ‘long term memory’ and how the brain stores information.  What is now known is that there isn't a 'short term memory', rather a part of the brain that psychologists call Working Memory. 
 Working Memory is a bit like a tradesman's work bench. All our 'tools' (information and sub steps to a task) are kept here and manipulated as need be.  Most adults can hold about 8 items at a time.  For some children, it can be quite a bit lower.  However, when information is presented or learnt in chunks (for example. learning a telephone number) and when new material is presented in a way that it can be attached to existing knowledge, it is able to be stored more easily and retrieved more readily.  If too much information is presented in one 'go' or if there is a disruption to the person's train of thought, all the items in the Working Memory are discarded and the 'bench is wiped clear', meaning the person must begin the process again.​​
 The implication of this is that a number of things need to happen in order for new learning to be remembered:
* New information must be presented with links to older, ‘known’ information.
* The amount of new content introduced at any one time should be restricted.

* New information must be presented in different ways, with visual and concrete/physical activity reinforcement if it is to be retained.
New information MUST be regularly reinforced and revised if it is to be retained.
* Students need those extra prompts readily available to them all the time (charts on the walls, concrete materials always available etc).

* Stressful situations, such as timed tasks (speed maths, spelling competitions, etc), cause the brain to be less efficient and ‘shut down’.