Some really helpful materials
Writing is not easy. It’s much easier to talk than to write. Be kind to yourself and your children – it’s hard!
1. Let your children see you reading and writing. Read, read, read to them. Get them to help you write a shopping list – try to be as specific as possible – this will build their vocabulary. Write an email together to a close friend or relative and tell a story within the email.
2. Around the table, at dinner time, talk about what you have all seen, heard, smelled, tasted, touched – that day. It builds up young people’s vocabulary and expressiveness.
3. Talk about an event in the news, find a good newspaper article about it and then discuss what the writer has done to make the scene come alive. Watch A Current Affair – which may seem like a crazy idea – but they use all sorts of language techniques – alliteration, metaphors in an attempt to persuade. With your child, work out how they use language to create effects.
4. Encourage your child, to write for five minutes about something that happened during the day – you could all do it. Don’t dwell on the grammar and spelling – what matters is the idea and what has been captured. The more we all write – the better we are. Find great examples of writing – letters home from ANZACS in WW1 are all extraordinary and beautifully written and then use them as a model to write something. Songs are wonderful too – find the lyrics of your favourite tunes and then show them to your child and then work out together why they are so moving or brilliant – have a go then at writing your own lyrics.
1. Be specific – don’t say food – say crispy roast potatoes.
2. Work hard to show not tell – don’t say – she was beautiful – say you are more lovely and temperate than a gentle Summer’s day. Ban all the following words – beautiful, gorgeous, great, fantastic, so cool.
3. Leap into a story/take a position – start in the middle – “Brian, get out of the fire!”
4. Use the senses -what can the character see/hear/taste/touch/smell?
Common spelling errors
Check you have capitalised the first letter of a sentence and all proper nouns.
Read through your work and check you haven’t forgotten a word. Add the correct word.
Check you have added a full stop at the end of a sentence and that you have inserted quotation marks.
Check your spelling.
Some common features of dyslexic writers
1. Omission: Omit a single letter
occuring for occurring
2. Insertion: Insert a single letter
off for of
3. Substitution: Replace a single letter with another single letter
definate for definite
4. Transposition: Misorder two adjacent letters
lable for label
A single letter is misplaced by more than one position in a word
litgh for light
5. Grapheme substitution: A plausible but incorrect choice of
their for there
thort for thought
5. Wrong use of a split vowel digraph
gole for goal
If you know a young person who makes these kinds of choices – he or she can be helped.
Please see: Information from ACARA on the adjustments available to young people with disabilities.
Information from ACARA on the adjustments available to young people with disabilities.
Information from the Victorian Education Department on dyslexia
Information from the Yale Centre for Creativity and Dyslexia
1. A helpful shortcut sheet for anyone wrestling with analysing unseen texts.
Please download: Unseen texts cheat sheet
2. For the NSW HSC student in the house …
Please download: Discovery thesis statements
3. It may not look like gold but these verbs are the cornerstone of every English essay.
Please download: Verbs