Wednesday, February 26, 2014

Classical Home Education and the dyslexic child

I read the Well Trained Mind a long time ago like when my oldest was about 2.  I wanted to do that.  I wanted to educate my children classicly at home.  Until my oldest hated reading and writing and was diagnosed with dyslexia.   I put those thoughts away because I really thought it wasn't possible.

And then a friend told me about Classical Conversations and I looked into it again.  I even tried 5 weeks of CC at home to see if it would work for us.  I went to visit a CC open house.  If you don't know what Classical Conversations is click here.

I liked a lot of things about it and found that it could possible work for dyslexics but I knew it wouldn't work for us.

But it peaked my interest in classical education again and I checked out the Well Trained Mind from the library and started to re-read it.  I found that reading it this time around - the things they talk about are doable with us.  Even with a kid who doesn't like to read and who hates writing.  It is actually painful for him to write so I understand it.

So he couldn't read a lot of books on his own but I could read books aloud to him and to the rest of the kids.  We have tried read alouds so many times and I have failed with them so many times!  This time I lowered my expectations.  This time I don't "have" to finish a chapter.  This time I make it more enjoyable.  I allow a little bit of craziness as long as it is quiet craziness and they can retain something.

And narrations - and notebooking - I love them now.  I thought I couldn't use them because he couldn't write well and he can't draw well either.  But I can write it for him. He learns so much from listening.  He could tell me about two pages in 5 minutes but I can't write that fast. 

Memorizing was another question I had because it can take him a long time to memorize things but once it does - it sticks!  But you don't just have to memorize boring facts - you can memorize poems, Bible verses, and yes even boring facts in a non-boring way - like to music!

I'll be talking more soon about how I make classical homeschooling work for a dyslexic child and the rest of us soon.  We aren't strictly classical though and I would probably consider us a little more eclectic.  We are always learning what works for us.


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