Mrs Julia Try, SENCO at Akeley Wood Senior School, would like to pass on some learning tips that she believes will help ALL students with their learning – not just those with special educational needs.


TIP 1: Turn on the subtitles!

Turning on the captions whilst watching films / TV / YouTube videos will improve reading accuracy and fluency without our young people even realising. More information about how this works here Even some of our Year 10 and Year 11 students will benefit from this. See the clip form Stephen Fry below, where he talks about this.

TIP 2: Eye Behaviour For Reading.

We all know that regular vision tests are important, but it is also important to ask the optician to informally test eye behaviours that affect reading skills. Tracking, convergence (aka binocular vision) and accommodation are all key skills. A good optician will be able to refer your child on to a behavioural optometrist if required. DW Roberts are a chain of local opticians who offer a reasonably priced “School Vision Test”. Very often, parents and teachers wonder if young people are dyslexic when, in fact, a visual issue is a major factor in the symptoms seen during reading and writing tasks. Coloured overlays or tinted lenses in spectacles can help some people.

TIP 3: Reading Comprehension.

Even at Senior School, the very best way to improve reading comprehension is to read and discuss texts together. Extending vocabulary knowledge, by checking on word meanings, is vital. Well written novels are great but reading and discussing any sort of texts which interest your young person is valuable (websites, magazines etc.).