Sydney Dyslexia

A fine site

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The Gift of Dyslexia Workshop

I hope that everyone who has ever considered changing career to helping dyslexic children and adults, has seen this flyer – and the rare opportunity to start the dyslexic training in Sydney. For most trainees this will be all they need to make an impact in the class room or with their own child.

If you have any questions or if you would like to work with me at Sydney Dyslexia afterwards, please contact me on email:

The official Registration Form – Gift of Dyslexia Workshop

Venue: Crows Nest Centre, Sydney, Australia

10-13 July 2017


Register early, as places are limited to 18.

Minimum numbers apply so do not make travel arrangements without sufficient insurance before you receive confirmation.

Early-bird – Registration & payment AU$1955 required by 13 June 2017

Registration after 13 June 2017 AU$2300 closes 3 July 2017


Please note that your place will not be confirmed until payment is received.


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(Charges will appear as Sage Learning Limited)


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Email form to:

Or Post to: 14 McLintock Street, Johnsonville, Wellington 6037, New Zealand


Any questions please phone: +64 4 478 2208 or email

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The Power Of Storytelling

Yes, I agree, storytelling is powerful and important – not only in classrooms. Every speech becomes more memorable and emotionally charged, when spiced with stories and we all rather like being entertained than lectured.

Picture this: Maria is highly visual and everything about school confuses her. She is only six, you know – and already there is a huge pressure. After all, in Year One there is an expectancy to read, write stories, do your numbers, sit exams and complete homework after a day, where nothing made sense. Just words, explanations. Everyone just talks and talks. Most of the words they use don’t even mean anything to Maria. They don’t add to pictures and if they do, the pictures seem to be wrong. Maria is very bright and was so looking forward to go to school and finally learn and enjoy it like her bigger sister. Now she just pretends to know it already, to find reading just boring, disrupts others when they read or makes fun. She already knows that she is different to her friends, who seem to understand so much more. ‘What’s wrong with me? ‘ she wants to know.

One day, she sits in class, looking bored and feeling stupid, chewing on her already diminished fingernails and chatting to her best friend Emma, when a new teacher walks in. A young girl, who just finished her teaching degree, asks them to sit around her on the floor and starts telling them a story about an ancient place a long time ago, when Pharaohs ruled the lands and slavery was common-place. She creates images in the minds of these children, who listen spell-bound, transported out of the classroom and into another world. Maria is now soaking up every word, filing it into memory – and loving her new favorite subject: history.

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Fidget Spinners

In case you are not up to the latest and hottest toy of this year – or were like me, very late to realize – you may have asked yourself the same question: What are Fidget Spinners?

According to Wikipedia, fidget spinner is a type of stress-relieving toy. … The toy may help people who have trouble focusing or fidgeting by acting as a release mechanism for nervous energy or stress. Invented in the 1990s, fidget spinners became a popular toy in 2017, as fidget toys in general began experiencing mainstream popularity.

I have asked a few of my clients about them – all of them actually had them in their school bag and were proudly showing off their spinners – and if they actually helped them to focus or feel less stressed. The answer was that it wasn’t really that, but they just either like to be having the latest, coolest tool or that it is a good toy to collect.

There seems to be no negative side effect and some people on the internet even claimed that it helped them to kick an addiction to an electronic device.

Have you had any experience? Good or bad?

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A Mother’s heart break story

I cannot tell you how familiar this story sounded, when I read it on another Davis facilitator’s site. I have literally heard these lines, word-for-word from mothers of my dyslexic students – and also as the mother of a dyslexic child, who had been struggling before I found Davis. Phrases like this mother expressed: “He will be fine,” “He just needs to try harder,” “He isn’t applying himself,” “He’ll catch up,” “You should read with him more,” “Make him read more…”

Getting clients to realize that they are not dumb, but just learn differently, is one of the main aims of a program – and of course that only happens when they prove their abilities to themselves, when that overwhelming feeling of ‘I get it now’ comes over them and you see that smile and start believing in themselves.

Yes, they still have their creativity and the genius way of thinking, inventing, dreaming – but after they unlock their potential, they also have a way of showing this to the world:

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I Suck at Poems

Well, that’s what my 14-year old client told me today and I wrote these words down vertically for him to give me an acrostic poem:

P.S. An acrostic poem is a type of poetry where the first, last or other letters in a line spell out a particular word or phrase. The most common and simple form of an acrostic poem is where the first letters of each line spell out the word or phrase.

am lost

o lost

U sually not so lost.

C losed shows

K iss my nose

A t the snow

T onight’s the night

P ity she’s not here

O pen mouth

E ats cake

M y stuff is tough

S o tough.

It certainly got him over writer’s block and opened the gate to writing and expressing himself. Why not try it yourself – it works with any message, of course. Often it’s very daunting trying to write an essay, when you are creative and your mind just seems to race in every direction – yet no words make it to the page.

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Invented Spelling

Have you ever heard of Invented Spelling? You may have seen it in your child’s writing, like I did, when my dyslexic boy was in Year 1, 2, 3 ….

I used to cringe, when I looked at Keanu’s very brief essay, spelling ‘finx’ (instead of ‘thinks’) among many other creative spelling ideas – but now a new study has confirmed that invented spelling has a lot of merit. Dr. J. Richard Gentry penned the essay ‘Raising Readers, Writers, and Spellers’ for “Psychology Today”.

His ‘invented spelling thesis’ is based on a study they did over years, following the level of literacy levels in students. To their surprise they found that those students whose literacy peaked early through memorization of sight words ended up with a lower level of literacy later in life than the children who learned over time by misspelling and not memorizing passively.

So instead of correcting your child, he suggests that it would be wiser to encourage them to keep on writing, reading it back to you. After that you can write their text correctly and ask them to read it again, yet never to point out the difference in spelling or any of their mistakes. Tricky words may look like Keanu’s ‘finx’, then evolve to ‘tinx’ – ‘thinx’ – ‘thinks’…all organically and when the child is ready. By then the word is truly integrated and actively known.

To read the full article, click here:

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Davis Gift of Dyslexia Workshop

I have recently decided to take on a Davis trained person to help me run ‘Sydney Dyslexia’ in Mosman. Ever since my lovely graphic designer friend made a new website ( for me and won several awards for it, it has been even busier than before. About a month ago he decided to also put up posters for the origami exercises all around Sydney CBD to create awareness of Dyslexia (all at his own cost!) and of the cool new site. Unfortunately/fortunately that has caused even more enquiries and I am not really in the position to look after each new potential client properly.

Unfortunately there are currently no new facilitators here in Sydney and the trainers from New Zealand have decided to introduce a new Gift of Dyslexia workshop for 10-13 July 2017. These four day-workshops are incredibly insightful and are often all that a teacher or tutor needs to help the children in his class or his clients. It also represents the first part of a training towards a certified Davis Dyslexia facilitator.

Please email me if you would like more information, prices (which I haven’t received yet) and details about it:…or reply to this blog.

Thank you!