Why is it that we are happy to spend our hard-earnt money on “limited edition” items believing them to be rare and special but struggle to celebrate our own uniqueness in the same manner? Surely, this same philosophy should extend to celebrating our own / our children’s learning differences (or more commonly termed learning difficulties!). In my field of study and work it has become more and more evident that some of the secondary characteristics of dyslexia (such as low self-esteem/anxiety) are often overlooked, despite being potentially very damaging to a child’s emotional wellbeing and general health. I have worked with countless adults that still fear reading/writing tasks because of the traumas they recall at school where they were labelled the “stupid child” or the “naughty child”. Seeing the majority of my clients (regardless of age) suffering in this manner led me to organically developing the Dyslexia Coaching service. This is a gentle and bespoke intervention aimed at building confidence, self-esteem, creativity and courage. I use approaches that are most suited to the need / age group I am working with (this could include: re-framing, hypnotherapy, art etc) to help individuals recognise and celebrate their uniqueness. More often than not, where there is a deficit (such as with phonological awareness), there will also be a strength (for example spatial reasoning). I coach children and adults to explore and nurture this.
So, with the new academic term only around the corner, I too am busy preparing my daughter to start school and embrace the adventure that awaits her. I feel that emotional, as well as physical preparation (the uniform, stationary…), is essential. See if you can encourage your child to identify their differences and to celebrate them. Support them to be more creative in their learning and play. As a parent (and professional), I believe that a happy and emotionally healthy child will naturally perform better in class, be more courageous in their decisions, and connect socially.