Such fabulous stuff!

Hello all,
Just wanted to share some lovely Easyread news with you-Steven told me today in our session completely out of the blue that ER has really helped him with his English and that he was able to plan his English assessment and felt confident to do so.
Saud said that he’s finding his reading a bit easier and Will, who couldn’t / wouldn’t even pick up a reading book back in September has just got 100% in his accelerated reading test.  Such fabulous stuff! :)

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I love reading now!

To David,

I like Easyread a lot. I’ve liked the stories, and the riddles, the jokes and the games.

It has helped me to read. I am reading a book now, called Magnus Fin and the Moonlight Mission. I started it yesterday, and I am already on Chapter 23. Without Easyread, I would still be struggling with reading.

I love reading now.

Thank you very much.

Love from Hannah

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Easyread at The Cherwell School: a heart-warming end-of-term celebration lunch

It was a great way to end the autumn term at The Cherwell School in Oxford, as we celebrated what was the end of implementing a huge systemic change in their approach to literacy intervention.

Following a successful pilot trial with 8 students last academic year, The Cherwell are now employing the Easyread programme as their main intervention for struggling readers and writers at key stage 3. Over this year and next, over 80 students will participate in the scheme, with the impact on reading and spelling ages being measured and evaluated along the way.

It was amazing to be able to end 2014 hearing such positive stories as the first wave of students started to get to the heart of level 2. Most were approaching around lesson 35 by the end of term and so were just starting to see some of the exciting changes that usually occur in their literacy at this stage of the programme.

The Year 7 students in particular, as you might expect, have really taken to the programme with one student asking for Easyread homework! Whilst we expected them to enjoy it, we never dreamed of this level of enthusiasm and dedication!

One student in Year 8, who has reached the top level of the reading assessor already, has noticed for himself the difference it is making to his spellings in class. Teachers have also commented on the noticeable improvement in his confidence and approach to lessons over the last couple of months, feeling he has more faith in his own abilities to succeed.

The overall feedback, even this early on, was that students who have struggled with reading for nearly their entire school lives were starting to see that there is a way that they can learn to read and spell, and that they aren’t just ‘stupid’ after all.

We are very much looking forward to what spring brings!


rachel headshotRachel Wallace is a former English teacher and KS3/4 Leader, and current Literacy Specialist for the Easyread System. Easyread is an online intervention for children with reading difficulties, dyslexia, auditory processing problems and more.

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We were at our wits end…

My boys did the easy read course last year.
We were at our wits end at what to do with our eldest Robert then 10.  He was a clearly bright boy failing at school and was getting so angry about it that we felt he was about to fall into huffy refusal and perhaps even into delinquency.   Ironically, he loved books and always had, he could memorize an entire book, but he had strange problems reading – he could do the big words but got all the little words wrong.  Bizarre.  Totally bizarre.
Of course, we asked the teachers what the problem was but they just kept telling us to practise.  We did, over and over, but it was always the same.   In the end, we thought he must be dyslexic (its in the family) and had him tested by the local university.  Yes, he came back as IQ 130 but slightly dyslexic.  The next question was what does dyslexic actually mean and how do we solve it?
It was googling about dyslexia when I stumbled on David youtubing.  AT LAST someone else describing Robert’s reading style; gets the big words right and the little words wrongI CANT TELL YOU THE RELIEF.  Emboldened by the offer of money back (they must be confident – right) we signed up the next day.  The mood of the whole house changed instantly.  I think that Robert knew that he had a problem & he felt optimism and relief that there was a way to sort it out.  Alex couldn’t bear to be left out of the fun so we signed him up too.
The course was really fun.  The boys loved their sessions. We did it everyday, it was our priority.  The first shock was that they needed the eye tracking exercises, particularly Alex.  What a difference that made.  Alex’s teachers knew that something had happened – they didn’t know what – when he came back from the holidays we’d done the exercises in.
Shock number two was that on Easyread’s urging we took Robert to the behavioural optometrist and discovered that he needed coloured lenses; green thank goodness, not pink..
Then I would say two weeks after the start of the true part of the course, Robert’s reading improved.  Just like that.  It improved.  We kept going on the course and his spelling improved too.  Not perfect but SO SO SO much better. He now goes to school and he doesn’t look noticeably more tired that his class mates at the end of the day as he used to. His confidence and attitude have both improved enormously.  His reading aloud is not perfect but I no longer think of him as being dyslexic. The school kept back his work to show to OFSTED.   We buy books in sets and have 8-10 books at a go from the library.  The funny thing is that he has such a way with words and an amazing imagination that I wonder if he will become an author.  Alex meanwhile is a fabulously good reader but rather slow and is quite a good speller.
Finally shock number 3 was that I discovered that nonsense words have sounds and my spelling has improved!  I guess that I needed a bit of the ‘ole magic too (PhD physics Oxford).  Never too well qualified to learn some more..
So there we have it.  Easyread really did change our lives.  I often wonder what would have happened if we hadn’t found the course.  Would we ever have twigged that the “issue” for Robert was actually a jigsaw of three parts; a light sensitivity, an eyetracking weakness and a failure to connect with phonics?  I doubt it.  Would Alex have gone through his entire life without discovering that he needed rather trivial eye training?  A boy with a massive IQ undermined because his eyes didn’t back and forth very well.  Would Robert have become a frustrated, bitter, no-hoper by aged 12?
Fortunately, we will never know.
And for that, we will be forever grateful.
Sincerely yours,

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