The Five Steps to Learning for Dyslexics

Dyslexic children are right-brained and have a different learning style from left-brained students.  Dyslexics need to start with a whole concrete or real concept and then learn the individual parts.

They don’t do well with sequential or step by step methods because they need to see the whole picture first.  Also they will have many questions about what they are learning and how to present it when doing an assignment about the subject that is being taught to them.

The five steps listed below cover the main areas that concern a dyslexic student when they are learning new skills and building knowledge about a subject.  If a dyslexic is taught their school work in this manner they will be able to understand, absorb and successfully complete class work.

  1. WHY? Why must I learn this? (Purpose) The brain must first know WHY it should accept an assignment or do a lesson.
  2. WHAT? What do you expect to find in my answer(s)? The brain must be trained to take notes, choose appropriate materials, focus, organize and develop answers that present ideas in a logical sequence on the question or topic to be discussed.
  3. HOW? How do I present my answers? Orally or written? Single words, sentences, paragraphs or essays? How do I write each of these forms? The skills required are the basic rules of grammar, sentence structure, paragraph and essay formats. The right-brained student must be shown full procedural systems of these language forms for organizing the ideas and answers either on paper or for oral presentation.
  4. WHEN? When do I start, finish and hand in the assignment? The brain must be instructed as to when to start on the assignment in class or at home, and when it must be finished for correcting or handing in for marking. Without these instructions it does not understand the time limits involved or panics because it doesn’t know them.
  5. OUTCOME? What have I learned? How will I use this information in future? The brain must understand the whole picture, its outcome and future applications in lessons or assignments if it is to do the work.

In view of the right-brained students’ learning styles, these five steps set out the criteria that needs to be provided for them each time you teach them a new lesson, analyze new information, give out an assignment or expect them to complete the work to meet your expectations.

Thanks for listening.

Check our website for more info and solutions for teaching dyslexics: or


Karen Hope

3 thoughts on “The Five Steps to Learning for Dyslexics

  1. Pingback: Seven Major Causes of Dyslexia « Rants & Raves from Dyslexia Victoria

  2. Good suggestions. I might also add that rather than making the suggestions for only dyslexics that , as in many things about dyslexic learning, the suggestions would apply to all students.

    There are many good teaching ideas suggested for dyslexics that could be easily included for all students with little investment of resources or time.

    The more dyslexia friendly teaching methods that are adopted for all students should help everyone. Take phonics as an example. There is no reason that a well developed phonics system could not be taught to all. That a dyslexic might need more intensive phonics instruction on their own time does not mean that having a sound base from general instruction is not helpful.

    My point is that there are many educational changes helpful to dyslexics that would also be helpful to other students as well .

    • Thank you, thank you, thank you John. You get it! Yes I have said the very same thing, a well integrated “dyslexia friendly” classroom will help all the students. Karey Hope, the co-founder of our website has 2 friends who are teachers in California and they advocate the very same thing. They go as far as to say if only our governments would just fund more training for regular teachers then the teachers could naturally integrate these “dyslexia friendly” methods into the regular class format all for the benefit of the kids with little wasted time. Good point John and we have just aligned ourselves with a gentleman from England who was instrumental in forcing their government to recognize Dyslexia and now their schools get actual funding to help. In fact there have been Dyslexia Resource Centers running for over 10 years in England. Yes it does seem that England and Australia and New Zealand are decades ahead of Canada and America when it come to actually doing something about accomodating the kids.
      Again, thanks for your comment and if there is anything in particular you would like us to comment on in our blog or newsletter or weekly chat just let me know. Maybe you have noticed I get a little passionate about getting the rest of society educated on how simple it is to deal with the idea of accomodating for learning difficulties as a whole.
      Hope to here from you again and glad to have connected with you.

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