It’s been eight months since we discovered that Josh has dyslexia. We’d long suspected that he might. Over the last eight years or so, we’ve tried countless phonics programs and reading approaches.
We’ve tried intensive teaching and patient (at least on the surface) watchful waiting. We’ve done choral reading, sight words, and lots of reading aloud. All those things helped a little, but nothing got us where we needed to be – fluent, independent reading.
First, we completed Lexercise’s free dyslexia test. After it showed that Josh might have dyslexia, we had him take the full evaluation, which confirmed the suspicion.
When we started school in July 2012, we also started Lexercise’s dyslexia treatment. We have met with our clinician, Tori, every week since July with the exception of a few holiday weeks.
In between sessions with Tori, Josh plays online games designed to reinforce that week’s concepts. He’s currently worked through about 25 of Lexercise’s 32 levels and I couldn’t be happier with the results.
Last week, Tori worked with Josh on a progress evaluation. The results?
- Improvement of two full grade-levels (in 5 months, y’all!) on word reading (using the San Diego Quick assessment)
- Reading fluency shows an improvement from 66 correct words per minute at 90% accuracy to 85 correct words per minute at 95% accuracy
- Phonemic decoding efficiency has improved from the 7th percentile to the 23rd percentile
Josh still struggles with his rate of reading, but I think that will improve as he reads more independently. Additionally, Tori suggested that recorded books could be a big help to him. To that end, I’ll be investigating Learning Ally, which whom Lexercise has recently partnered.
Learning Ally helps to provide audio books to people diagnosed with reading disabilities. The books are read by people, not computers. (This makes a huge difference according to Brianna, who has used both, though not through Learning Ally.) The folks at Lexercise tell me this even includes textbooks not available through any other audiobook company.
Josh – reading aloud with confidence!
In addition to this partnership, Lexercise is also developing instructional videos to go along with their online practice games. The videos will allow the student to watch a short video at their current level before playing the games.
This means the student can work independently on concepts, so that online treatment time with his clinician can more effectively be spent working through areas of difficulty. Because the treatment sessions will be more focused, it will allow the student to make progress through the treatment program more quickly.
That’s great news because the quicker a child can progress through the program, the quicker he can get on with the business of improving. It’s an exciting time to be involved with Lexercise!
In addition to his reading progress, I’ve noticed improvement in Josh’s spelling. I’ve got a Post-It note that I’ve put aside to keep. It was a note Josh left for Brian one evening. There was only one misspelled word on the entire note and he’d spelled it correctly in another spot, so I think it was just that he got in a hurry. That’s exciting stuff after the struggles we’ve had!
Finally, Tori commented on the improvements in Josh’s writing samples, saying that his most recent sample, “looks more ‘grown up'” and that “the types of errors he is making show growth. His errors are correct phonetic spelling patterns (which they weren’t before).”
I’ve told many, many people, both in person and online, since we started Lexercise: If you suspect your child may have dyslexia, I strongly encourage you to have them take the free screener. This is something I wish we’d discovered years ago. Don’t waste years struggling and being frustrated. There is help for children with dyslexia.
For more feedback on how Lexercise is helping kids with dyslexia, visit Maureen at Spell Outloud and check out her Lexercise progress report. You can follow Lexercise on Twitter and Facebook to receive all the latest news, updates, and tips for helping your dyslexic child.
I was privileged to receive this service at a discounted rate in exchange for advertising space and writing a review, but I would gladly have paid full price for it. I received no other compensation for this review, nor was I required to post a positive review. The opinions expressed are my personal, honest opinions. Your experience may vary. Please read my full disclosure policy for more details.
Kris Bales is a newly-retired homeschool mom and the quirky, Christ-following, painfully honest founder (and former owner) of Weird, Unsocialized Homeschoolers. She has a pretty serious addiction to sweet tea and Words with Friends. Kris and her husband of over 30 years are parents to three amazing homeschool grads. They share their home with three dogs, two cats, a ball python, a bearded dragon, and seven birds.