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Issue 10: July 2022


On the cover is Nick Grissom




The July 2022 issue of Dystinct Magazine brings to you:

1) The Dystinct Journey of Zavier Cruz - interviewed by Zahra Nawaz (https://www.instagram.com/cruz.woodworks.furnishings/)

The story of 11-year-old homeschooled entrepreneur Zavier Cruz and how his mother, Maelisa Cruz, combined his love for building things and entrepreneurial spirit to make learning fun.


2) Foundational Knowledge for Teaching Reading - Dr Pledger Fedora (Director at Dyslexia Institute for Literacy and Learning https://www.dyslexialiteracy.com/)

Dr Pledger Fedora elaborates on the revised Knowledge and Practice Standards for Teachers of Reading (2018) developed by the International Dyslexia Association (IDA), which have been designed to guide the preparation of all teachers of reading.


3) Three Common Mistakes We Make When Teaching or Parenting a Child with Dyslexia (and what they tell us about ourselves) - M. Colleen Cruz (Educator, Author, and Consultant. https://www.mcolleencruz.com/)

M. Colleen Cruz talks about the three common mistakes parents and educators of children with dyslexia make, what these mistakes reveal about our beliefs, and how we can rectify them.


4) Why Did John Need to Change Schools? - Cheri Dotterer (Dysgraphia Educational Consultant, international speaker, and author https://www.cheridotterer.com/)

Cheri Dotterer discusses how the frustration and anxiety associated with dysgraphia can affect students' motivation to engage in classrooms and provides an overview of how educators can support and strengthen the social-emotional well-being of students with dysgraphia.


5) Decoding Math: How understanding the science of math can transform instruction - Rebecca Lord (Elementary Math Coach, Special Educator, and Middle school Math Teacher http://lordmath.com/)

Rebecca Lord explains how humans are born with an innate number sense and how understanding the neuroscience behind how the brain processes numbers can help instructors deliver math instruction that improves number sense and mathematical learning for all students.


6) The Dystinct Journey of Nick Grissom - interviewed by Zahra Nawaz

Nick Grissom is a determined young man with a brilliantly positive attitude. In this article, he shares his journey of how he went from raising 12 chickens to now operating a flourishing farm.


7) Both Sides of the Table - By Erica Kaufmann (Literacy Coach)

Erica Kaufmann, a literacy coach and a parent of a child with dyslexia, talks of her experience supporting struggling high school students with their literacy needs and offers practical tips for both parents of children with learning difficulties and educators of high school students.


8) Dyslexia - How to best reduce anxiety and lift self-esteem - Paloma Forde (Educational Trainer, Consultant, Speaker, and Author https://screening4dyslexia.com/)

Paloma Forde discusses how children with dyslexia are susceptible to low self-esteem and anxiety and how schools can ensure that their staff are trained to spot this and provide simple adjustments to alleviate it.


9) Ten Ways to Incorporate the Science of Reading into the Balanced Literacy Classroom - Wendy Darasz and Jen Yagid (Wilson certified and credentialed Dyslexia Practitioners https://informedliteracy.com)

Wendy Darasz and Jen Yagid provide ten creative ideas for educators to incorporate the Science of Reading into their classroom routines that can have a big impact on student growth.


10) Tutoring or Dyslexia School? -Factors to consider - Lisa Parnello (Dyslexia specialist, Wilson credentialed trainer https://www.parnelloeducation.com)

Lisa Parnello enumerates crucial factors to consider when choosing between tutoring or specialist dyslexia schools for a child diagnosed with dyslexia.


11) Starting AT Off Right: What to Do Once AT Has Been Added to the IEP - Katie Larew (Assistive Technology Specialist and Dyslexia Practitioner https://assistivetechnologyfordyslexia.com)

Katie Larew outlines factors to consider in preventing roadblocks in your child's use of Assistive technology, both at school and at home, so the AT support in the child's IEP can be utilised effectively.




💡Every child needs to find their own outlet!

There is so much wisdom in this piece of advice from Lisa Grissom, mum of Nick Grissom, who is featured in this issue (page 79). While we scramble to find our struggling children academic help and ferry them to and fro from their various therapy sessions, we should be mindful of what enriches their little hearts. Children need to feel like they excel at something and pursue it to their heart’s content. After all, the struggle with the school system only lasts until they graduate from school. These passions of theirs will most likely turn into a career path for them where they will excel.

I hope you enjoy reading this issue and all the specialist content covered.

Please get in touch with me if you have any feedback, ideas, or stories to share to change the narrative surrounding learning difficulties.


Zahra Nawaz Shafeeq




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