Having problems with DS's spelling and handwriting. They've always been commented on at first school, he's now year 5 at Middle School. He can read well but hates reading to someone.
He used to enjoy English at First school but increasingly hates it at Middle School with homework becoming a big issue. This evening I tested him on his spellings and he got very upset. It is hard to read the spellings in the first place. I corrected the ones that were wrong and he said he had spelt 'chiefs' correctly - he had written 'chifes' though it is very hard to tell as his handwriting is poor. He gets very stressed and says his ear and throat hurts when he's trying to do it.
A fair few of his cousins have dyslexia and his sister has dyspraxia . He's been screened comprehensively for dyspraxia by an OT and physio and his old Headteacher did a test for dyslexia, I have no idea which one. They did CAT tests back in the Autumn and he scored 141 in the Verbal.
I asked him earlier if the words ever moved on the page when reading and he said they do after about 5 mins. He's very resistant to handwriting practice, says he wants to be a research scientist and will just use the computer.
Parent's evening is soon and I'm seeing the teacher and would like to cone up with a way to get him to enjoy English again. Does anyone have any thoughts on what I've written?
Very hard to know if this is dyslexia or not but can understand why you're suspecting it.
I'd talk to teacher openly about your worries that it isn't just that he's not engaging but that he may be slightly dyslexic.
In terms of his aspirations to be a research scientist - use that against him. If he wants to be a research scientist he's got to pass a number of written exams (GCSE & A Level). If they can't read what he has written, if it is riddled with spelling errors - this can seriously hurt his chances of doing well on exams.
Handwriting may be improved in other ways than practicing writing out words:
painting drawing calligraphy
all use fine motor skills.
I know one friend had great success with her DS (who hates writing) by encouraging him to make cartoon strips. He's really got into it - his writing has improved, his vocabulary has improved - and his illustration skills have been put to good use (as far as his Mum is concerned).
Often mild dyslexics have serious problems transcribing (so can read things well enough on the page/ screen but can't copy them accurately). You could raise this problem with the teacher and say that it is causing problems at home. Hopefully the teacher will offer to check through his list or some other solution (i.e. posting spellings on-line, etc...).