A father in Hertz, UK gives an overview of his daughter’s problems and progress:
Aged about 6 and a half (UK year 1)
Teachers informed us that Anne showed “dyslexic symptoms” and that they expected much better reading, spelling, and writing for someone “of her ability.”
Anne is assigned to a special needs teacher for reading one period per week.
At end of UK year 2 (aged 7 and a half)
Anne did the national standard assessment tests (SATs) — which all UK kids do — and scored about 1 year behind the average for reading. Spelling and handwriting were also very poor.
Anne continued with special needs into year 3, which included flash cards plus learning rules for how particular groups of words are spelt. However, we did not see much evidence that this was helping. At the end of year 3 Anne scored 10 percentage points below the year average in her school’s internal “English test.” We don’t know for sure but this is likely to have put her well into the 4th quartile.
In year 4 Anne continued with special needs from September but we began Edublox in January 2002 (aged just 9). At this point she was really struggling to keep up with classwork — including subjects like history, science and even Maths because of the reading required. She also found it very hard to write more than very basic and short answers to homework questions.
At end of year 4, having done 2 terms of Edublox
Anne had improved sharply in her English, scoring exactly on the year average in the internal school exam. Improvement in reading was noticeable but not dramatic.
At beginning of year 5, i.e. September this year
The pace of improvement quickened. Anne was noticeably a much more confident reader — e.g. she began reading to herself after listening to a story read by us. By agreement with the school Anne dropped the special needs classes. Her teacher also remarked on reading improvement. At end September 2002 Anne was assessed against the national reading standard. She scored a reading age of 10.02 years against a chronological age of 9.6 years.
Current state of play
Reading continues to improve steadily and we are starting to see movement on spelling and in writing confidence, although these two still lag. We aim to continue with Edublox till the end of March 2003 (all being well).