It is essential to carefully examine the struggles faced by a child during the learning process in order to provide the appropriate intervention (P1 syllabus must include teaching pupils basics, by Madam Chan Mei Mei, Feb 9).
I used to be a slow learner who hated reading due to a lack of motivation. My mother played a big role in helping me form the habit of reading, by piquing my interest with cartoons of fairy tales, buying me books on topics I was interested in and spending time reading with me.
Some children can find reading challenging due to their learning differences.
For instance, dyslexia affects a child's ability to recognise, spell and decode words as his brain processes written material differently. This is not the result of poor teaching or upbringing.
It is important to help such children become independent learners with appropriate and timely intervention, as their parents may not be able to support the child due to work commitments and lack of training.
Students with learning differences have a broad and diverse range of needs. A one-size-fits-all approach may not work.
The Ministry of Education (MOE) supports schools with allied educators trained in special needs, specialised remediation programmes and school-based itinerant support services provided by social service organisations. MOE psychologists also work with schools to provide consultation to these students.
Children with dyslexia may also enrol in the Main Literacy Programme at the Dyslexia Association of Singapore (DAS) to address their literacy challenges.
They can also access specialised support at DAS to address co-occurring challenges that include dyspraxia and Asperger's syndrome.
Sathi Menon (Mrs)
Educational Advisor, Main Literacy Programme
Dyslexia Association of Singapore