【新时代英语:教育报道】秘密老师:我们把有诵读困难的孩子培养成失败的感觉.

StephenZhu2018-04-22 09:11:01

Secret Teacher: we're setting dyslexic children up to feel like failures

Pupils with dyslexia are at a disadvantage in tests, and we don’t have the resources to give them the help they need

Although we do our best to support all children, it is ad hoc and chaotic. I see them falling behind in their learning as a result.’ Photograph: Alamy

It is Monday morning and our year 3 literacy lesson is under way. The child I’m funded to work with is using an iPad while they have a break, watching a show aimed at helping children with additional needs develop communication skills. I walk around the classroom supporting others. We’re looking at using adjectives in Roman myths. Jenny asks how to spell “tiny”; Kearon needs the spelling for “flaming” at the same moment Behnam wants “sanctimonious”.

John is struggling more than the others. Even if I write the word for him he rarely copies it correctly and his letters are back to front, upside down, and sometimes more a squiggle than anything else. Out of the corner of my eye I see him drawing a cartoon on the side of his page. I ask him to start writing. He strings a few words together, and then goes back to drawing. I don’t have any more time to support him because my 1:1 is ready to begin work.

I have some first-hand experience of the struggles my class are facing. I was never diagnosed with dyslexia – there were no assessments for it when I was at school – but I feel I have some of the characteristics. The noise of the classroom interferes with my ability to hear sounds in words. I regularly need to use a spell checker, and feel lucky that the schools in which I have worked have been happy for me to do so.

But I believe the current system is failing dyslexic pupils. Research suggests dyslexic children are more likely to suffer low self-esteem, poor motivation and concentration. Our local council’s dyslexia guidance stresses the importance of early recognition and intervention, and there are a number of ways teaching can be adapted to help meet students’ needs – simplifying written instructions, presenting only a small amount of writing to them, or using audio devices. Yet shortage of time, staff and technical equipment means it’s very hard to give such targeted assistance.

I’ve seen huge delays in assessments to determine what support a child might need – right across special educational needs (SEN) in the schools I work with. This is particularly the case for specific learning difficulties such as dyslexia that may not be deemed severe or urgent.

I write endless lists of observations about children struggling with a range of issues, including spelling. Meetings are set with teachers or senior management for those with education, health and care plans (EHCPs), but there are many children without plans who also need help. Funding attached to the EHCP buys in people like me to work with specific students, but the others seem to slip through the cracks. Although we do our best to support all children, it is ad hoc and chaotic. I see them falling behind in their learning as a result.

The leadership teams at the schools I work with are aware of the problem but are working under the same constraints as the rest of us. There simply isn’t time, with the staff we have, to embark on interventions.

In a 2016 National Education Union survey of ALT members working in state-funded schools in England, 83% reported that children with special educational needs were not getting enough support. One teacher said: “It’s frustrating and heartbreaking to see the amount of children not getting adequate support, let alone the in-depth support they need, due to lack of money, and the system’s reticence to actually put a child on the SEN register.” From what I can see, the situation has not improved.

Sats also present a challenge. There is no specific support for dyslexics in these tests, although it is possible to apply for extra time for any child as long as there is supporting evidence. At two of the schools in which I’ve worked, children can use spell checkers or dictionaries during the essay-writing component, but the work has to be edited independently by the child. Those who can’t spot misspelt or wayward words will still be at a disadvantage.

Previously, teachers and union leaders have raised concerns over the impact of “draconion” spelling tests on dyslexic children. Changes made this year allowing teachers to judge overall aptitude rather than expecting children to meet every criteria should help those who struggle with spelling. According to Sarah Hannafin, senior policy adviser for NAHT, dyslexic children should be “less disadvantaged... than they were in previous years”. But judging pupils on such narrow measures doesn’t give us a rounded picture of ability or intelligence.

If I took the Sats test today, I doubt I would pass it. I moved through school at a time when spelling and grammar were important but not essential. I was given the support I needed to grow. This gave me space to develop my creative writing without worrying about perfect spelling. I gained the confidence in myself as a learner – starting out in the remedial maths and English set at school and ending up with a PhD in health education.

The picture is very different for the children I teach. As a result of too little targeted support and stringent tests, I worry many will enter secondary school believing themselves to be failures. But I don’t feel I’m in a position to give these children the level of help they need or deserve.


【参考译文】

秘密老师:我们把有诵读困难的孩子培养成失败的感觉。

患有阅读障碍的学生在考试中处于劣势,我们没有足够的资源来帮助他们。

周一早上,我们三年级识字课正在进行。我资助的孩子一起工作是使用iPad的时候休息一下,看一个节目旨在帮助儿童有额外需求发展沟通技巧。我在教室里走来走去支持别人。我们正在寻找在罗马神话中使用形容词。珍妮问如何拼写“小”;Kearon需要拼写“燃烧”在同一时刻Behnam希望“伪善”。


约翰比其他人更多的挣扎。即使我写这个词对他来说他很少复制它正确地和他的信件回到前面,上下颠倒,有时更比任何其他乱涂乱画。角落里的我的眼睛我看到他画一个卡通的页面。我问他开始写作。他弦一起几句,然后回到绘画。我没有更多的时间来支持他,因为我的1:1准备开始工作。


我有一些亲身经历的斗争正面临我的类。我从来没有诊断出患有诵读困难,没有评估当我还在学校,但我觉得我有一些特点。教室的噪音干扰我听到声音的能力。我经常需要使用拼写检查器,感到幸运,我曾工作过的学校已经为我感到高兴。


但我相信当前系统没有诵读困难的学生。研究表明,患有诵读困难症的孩子更有可能遭受低自尊,贫穷的动机和浓度。我们当地的委员会的阅读障碍指导强调早期识别和干预的重要性,有多种方式教学可以适应帮助满足学生的需求,简化书面指示,提出只有少量的写作,或使用音频设备。然而短缺的时间,人员和技术设备意味着很难给这种有针对性的援助。


我看到巨大的延迟评估来确定支持一个孩子可能需要在特殊教育需求(SEN)和我一起工作在学校。尤其阅读障碍等特定的学习困难,可能不被视为严重或紧迫。


我写不尽的观察关于儿童面临一系列问题,包括拼写。会议设置与教师或高级管理人员的教育、医疗和护理计划(EHCPs),但也有许多孩子没有计划也需要帮助。资金在EHCP购买在像我这样的人与特定的学生,但其他人似乎成为漏网之鱼。虽然我们尽力支持所有的孩子,它是特别的和混乱。我看到他们在他们的学习落后。


和我一起工作的领导团队在学校意识到这个问题,但在相同条件下的工作,其余的人。根本没有时间,人员,进行干预。

在2016年的全国教育联盟对英国公立学校的ALT成员的调查中,83%的人报告说有特殊教育需求的孩子没有得到足够的支持。一位老师说:“看到孩子们得不到足够的支持是令人沮丧和心碎的,更不用说他们需要的深度支持了,因为缺钱,而且系统不愿让一个孩子进入生源。”从我所能看到的情况来看,情况并没有好转。


sat也是一个挑战。在这些测试中没有对阅读障碍的特殊支持,尽管只要有证据支持,就有可能为任何孩子申请额外的时间。在我工作过的两所学校里,孩子们可以使用拼写检查或字典,但必须由孩子独立编辑。那些不能辨别拼写错误或不听话的人仍然处于不利的地位。


在此之前,教师和工会领袖们已经对“draconion”拼写测试对诵读困难儿童的影响提出了担忧。今年的变化使得教师能够判断整体的能力,而不是期望孩子满足所有的标准,这应该有助于那些与拼写斗争的人。NAHT的高级政策顾问Sarah Hannafin认为,诵读困难的儿童应该“不那么弱势……”比往年都要多。但是,从这些狭隘的角度来判断学生,并不能给我们一个全面的能力或智力。

如果我今天参加sat考试,我肯定会通过考试。我在学校的时候,拼写和语法很重要,但并不重要。我得到了成长所需的支持。这给了我空间去发展我的创造性写作,而不用担心完美的拼写。作为一个学习者,我获得了自信——从学校的补习数学和英语开始,最后获得了健康教育的博士学位。


我教的孩子们的情况大不相同。由于缺乏针对性的支持和严格的测试,我担心许多人会进入中学,认为自己是失败者。但我觉得我没有能力给这些孩子们他们所需要或应该得到的帮助。