An Introduction to Davis Techniques:
FREE Information and Discussion Event
This is a great opportunity for you to find out Davis techniques, our philosophy and insights into learning difficulties known as Dyslexia, dyscalculia, AD/HD and dyspraxia. To see if our techniques will finally give you the ability to overcome your or your child's difficulties.
No previous diagnosis necessary.
Professional services described as Davis®, including Davis® Dyslexia Correction, Davis® Symbol Mastery, Davis® Orientation Counseling, Davis® Attention Mastery, Davis® Math Mastery, and Davis® Reading Program for Young Learners may only be provided by persons who are trained and licensed as Davis Facilitators or Specialists by Davis Dyslexia Association International.
Dyslexia, AD/HD, Dyscalculia and Dyspraxia Specialist Services in West Sussex
3 SIMPLE STEPS
1. INITIAL ASSESSMENT
I will conduct an assessment which usually lasts about 2 hours, that will establish your, or your child's strengths and any areas that might need addressing.
Parents are welcome to stay as this is a great opportunity for you to ask questions and find out how Davis can help your child.
Call me on 078 234 71801 to make your booking.
2. BESPOKE PROGRAMME
The student will then have one-to-one sessions with me, a fully qualified and licensed Davis facilitator. A dyslexia programme is 30 hours and is given over 5 days. A Maths or AD/HD programme is approximately 45 hours and given over a maximum of 8 days.
By the end of their programme, the student will have learned to use the Davis tools efficiently, to concentrate, to stay focused. They will be able to read with better fluency and have the skills to develop sound comprehension and recall of the text. They might also appear calmer, more in control and more confident.
3. ON-GOING SUPPORT
After your programme has been completed, I will be available to support you as much and for as long as you need at no extra cost.
Follow-up work is necessary after a Davis programme as you will need support with your newly acquired skills. If you do not have a support person, arrangements can be made for me to support you.
HELLO AND WELCOME
Tania Blackmore-Squires is a fully qualified teacher, Winchester University College, with over 20 years’ experience in classrooms. She has a BA (hons) with a Qualified Teacher Status (QTS) degrees and has taught in both state and independent primary schools. She has a current Davis Dyslexia Association International Certification (DDAI).
She has spent the last three years facilitating children and adults to be independent learners using their natural innate strengths and abilities.
'Teaching individuals with learning difficulties provides an ideal opportunity to identify what motivates them to learn. I enjoy discovering, with my client, gaps in their knowledge and understanding and then helping them to take control of the way they think and learn. When they take ownership of their own learning it isn't long before self-esteem, confidence and achievement improve. Finding out how and what motivates you to learn is a life changing process.'
Davis Learning Strategies tap into the creative learning process of all children and adults, regardless of their learning style and speed. Davis Programmes are one of the most widely used Dyslexia programmes in the world, with a 97% success rate.
IS IT DYSLEXIA, AD/HD OR ANOTHER LEARNING DISABILITY AND HOW DAVIS HELPS THEM ALL.
An excellent video from my colleague Carl Nigi, simplifying terminology and explaining how Davis works.
Click the watch button to view.
WHAT IS DYSLEXIA?
The theory is that dyslexic individuals are picture thinkers who experience perceptual disorientations in the senses of time, vision, hearing, and/or balance and coordination. The programmes I provide give a solution based on two key elements:
A method for controlling perceptual disorientation.
A method for eliminating the causes for perceptual disorientation.
Resolve the Disorientation.
Fortunately, it is very easy to stop the disorientation. All I have to do is teach the student how to recognise when they are disoriented, and then how to use their own mind and awareness to turn off their disorientation – or, in other words, to become 'oriented.' This really is no more difficult than teaching a child how to hold their breath while swimming underwater; it is simply a matter of learning to consciously control something that usually happens in our minds without our awareness.
Resolving disorientation is necessary before the student can progress, because otherwise the student will continue to misperceive letters and words. If one word sometimes looks like bat, and at other times looks like tab or pat or tap or tad – there is no hope that the student will ever be able to recognise the word. A parent or teacher might think that the student has memory problems and encourage drill and repetition, whereas the student is confused and frustrated because the tutor seems to be showing him different words each time.
Fortunately, the methods are easy to teach. Since it involves a skill that dyslexic children are good at – using their imagination – they usually catch on very quickly.
Sometimes, especially with older children and adults, the results from Orientation Counseling are extremely dramatic, resulting in an immediate jump of several levels in reading ability. This is because for these children, their disorientation has been the major barrier to progress. They may have already had years of education or tutoring; once disorientation is resolved, all their past experience clicks in to place, and progress is typically extremely rapid.
However, learning to control disorientations does not resolve dyslexia. All it does is resolve a key symptom of dyslexia, not the underlying cause. Until you fix the cause, the symptoms will inevitably recur.
Resolve the Factors that Trigger Disorientation:
The reason that controlling disorientation is not enough to resolve dyslexia is that the disorientation is a response to confusion, frustration, or stress. In the case of reading, this response is triggered by confusion over letters or words. As long as this confusion exists, and there is no picture for what a word represents, the student will continue to become disoriented when reading.
For reading, writing and spelling improvement, I use three basic steps:
Mastery of the alphabet and basic language symbols.
Mastery of words for which the dyslexic has no picture or meaning.
Building sequencing and comprehension skills during reading.
Resolving Letter Confusion — The (Clay) Plasticine Alphabet:
Disorientation is often caused by individual letters that are visually or auditorily confusing to dyslexics. For example, a client may find it difficult to distinguish c from e because of their similar appearance; others have problems with c and s or c and k because they often represent the same sound.
Thus, the first step toward resolving dyslexia is to create the letters of the alphabet in (clay) plasticine. We use plasticine because it is a three-dimensional medium and also involves a creative, participatory act. By molding the letters in plasticine, the alphabet is no longer something arbitrary but something my client has made, and thus becomes a part of them.
Through observation of how the student forms the letters, and how they react to saying the names of the letters, we can find which are ‘triggers’ for disorientation, confusion and misperception; and help the student overcome the confusion aroused by that letter.
Alphabet Mastery is followed by similar work with punctuation marks and pronunciation or speech sounds.
With this knowledge, the student is equipped to use one of the most important tools for learning that we can provide the picture-thinker: the ability to explore the meaning of words with the dictionary.
Putting Pictures to the Words: Davis Symbol Mastery
The words that cause the most confusion for dyslexics are common words, such as ‘it’ or ‘from.’ Often a student will easily read a longer word in a story, such as ‘crocodile,’ but hesitate or stumble over a word like ‘the.’ Because these words lead to disorientation, we call them trigger words.
This is because the dyslexic student thinks with pictures. It is easy to envision a crocodile, but very difficult to imagine a picture for the words ‘of’ or ‘this.’
We resolve this problem through a process called Davis Symbol Mastery. After looking up a word in a dictionary and discussing a definition with me, the student models an object or set of objects which accurately represents the meaning of the word, as well as the letters of the word in clay. This process goes far beyond the multi-sensory and phonemic awareness strategies that are recommended for dyslexic learners. It engages the creative process and establishes a lasting mental image for a specific word and series of letters. It produces comprehension and long-term retention of the spelling and meaning of a word without the need for phonetic decoding or memorisation. It stops the word from causing any future disorientations.
There are more than 200 trigger words in the English language that have to be mastered, but once this is done the student has developed a working arsenal of sight words – words that are both recognised and understood as soon as they are seen.
The other goal is that the student has learned a method that can be applied to any word or concept. Davis Symbol Mastery can also be used to master the vocabulary of any subject. The word ‘polygon’ or ‘cytoplasm’ can be mastered even more easily than the word ‘by.’ As the student grows older, they have a method that will enable them to master any concept that causes problems.
Three Steps to Easier Reading.
To help dyslexic students master the mechanics of reading, and increase reading speed and comprehension, we use a set of three techniques: Spell-Reading, Sweep-Sweep-Spell, and Picture-at-Punctuation. One problem that dyslexics have is that it is not natural for them to sound out words letter by letter, or even track the letters of a word from left-to-right, taking in one letter at a time.
As picture thinkers, they want to look at all the words at once. Their struggle to sound out written words leaves them unable to comprehend written material and usually necessitate re-reading the same text numerous times often at the cost of severe headaches. The exercises I use allow dyslexics a way to quickly, comfortably and easily learn to visually track, decode, and comprehend written material using their natural abilities.
A detailed explanation of the Davis Theory of dyslexic thinking and development as well as a step-by-step instructions for the Basic Davis Methods can be found in the book The Gift of Dyslexia, you can find the link below in the further reading section.
I CAN'T DO MATHS
- and how can a Davis programme help?
Why should it be that almost as soon as we start our formal education so many of us develop difficulties, and in some cases, almost amounting to a phobia, about working with numerals?
“Dyscalculia: a condition that affects the ability to acquire mathematical skills. Dyscalculic learners may have difficulty understanding simple number concepts, lack an intuitive grasp of numbers, and have problems learning number facts and procedures. Even if they produce a correct answer or use a correct method, they may do so mechanically and without confidence.” (Department for Education and science, 2001).
Acalculia: cannot perform arithmetic at all.
So, how does dys/acalculia occur? Generally, up until the moment children start school, most are happily developing mathematical skills and awareness. Most master one to one correspondence as they begin to identify 'Self' as a separate individual and recognise the separateness of those around them. Spatial awareness also begins to develop. Children know where things belong and is confused if things are not in their proper place. Before children get to school, most will be able to draw a picture of a house with windows and doors in reasonable places, and a face with two eyes, one nose and one mouth. They can clearly recognise the quantity ‘two’. Mathematical development is progressing just as it should, increasing as the child makes more sense of the surroundings that orders their life.
Alongside this, a growing awareness of numerals develops. Numerals are all around us and, unlike letters, there are only 10 individual symbols that we used to represent numbers, so they crop up frequently. Numerals are the only symbols that represent quantity. Children will happily and often very proudly, recite numerals as far as they can go. This is not counting. Pre-school children are in an absorbent phase for language. Words hold a fascination for them. They recite nursery rhymes, repeat dialogue from screens and chant the alphabet and numerals - the last two, usually, with much encouragement from adults around them. This does no harm at all to the Child’s mathematical development.
Before introducing children to arithmetic, it is essential to be sure they recognise the links between the numerals (abstract), the quantity they represent and the sound we make when we speak about them. Children become ready for abstraction at different rates - some children take longer than others to come to an understanding of these concepts. If children are taught arithmetic before they have grasped it through experience, this lack of understanding can interfere with their ability to do even the arithmetic we consider simple. Failure affects self-esteem and can lead to phobia.
The best way to prevent dyscalculia is to keep your children away from full maths instruction until they are truly ready for it. Many children starting school are not ready to learn to do arithmetic with a pencil - abstract learning. This fact is at the root of the problems that can develop and our label dyscalculia. Put simply, this is why dyscalculia happens.
By the time the child has learnt to 'hate' maths and feels they ‘can't do it’ and are possibly on their way to creating a phobia, their parent or indeed they may feel it's too late and there's noting that can be done. They just 'hate' maths and 'can't do it.'
So, how can a lack of understanding of maths be helped? By mastering the basic concepts, of which there are 11 and then understanding basic maths concepts using visual imagery and by experience, of which there are 12 exercises in a Davis Maths Mastery programme.
My job as a facilitator is to assist a client in in eliminating the causes of the blocks to their learning. A Davis Maths Mastery programme will help adults and children.
Call me on 07823471801 to see how I can help.
DOES THE DAVIS METHOD WORK?
The Evidence Base of Davis methods
Facilitators in Calgary, embarked on a program of pre- and post-program testing of all of their clients, using the Ekwall-Shankar Reading Inventory.
Their data from more than 360 consecutive clients showed average improvement of almost 4 full grade levels in reading over the course of a basic 5-day dyslexia program. More than one-third of their clients showed improvement of 5 or more grade levels; more than three-quarters improved their reading skills by at least 3 grade levels. Level of improvement correlated positively to student age. Children age 8 - 12 had average gains of slightly above 3 grade levels. Teenagers, age 13-18, averaged almost 5 grade levels and adults, ranging in age from 19 - 57, experienced an average improvement in ability of 6 grade levels.
Pilot School Program
In the late 1990’s, Ron Davis also assisted educators in developing and piloting a primary level, school-based foundational program called Davis Learning Strategies. This program was created by a team of three Davis Facilitators who were also experienced teachers, led by Sharon Pfeiffer, and conducting research under the guidance of Dr. T.F. McLaughlin of Gonzaga University. The Davis tools were modified for use with younger children in classroom group settings. Students in multiple classrooms at California public schools were provided with supplemental Davis-based instruction as they progressed from grades K-2. Their progress was later compared with students in demographically matched classrooms at the same schools, taught with the same curriculum but without the Davis component.
The Davis groups scored significantly higher on tests of sight word recognition, and no children from the Davis groups needed further intervention or special education support. Results for first graders were later compiled and published in a peer-reviewed journal.
In 2003, a team of prominent Italian researchers compared outcomes of students receiving 8 different forms of dyslexia intervention, at various learning centers in their region. This included a group of 16 children in grades 3-8 who had received a Davis-based intervention relying on Davis Orientation Counseling as described in The Gift of Dyslexia. The researchers reported that the Davis group showed the greatest increase in reading speed, with passage reading at a rate that was double or triple the speed of students in other groups. Because the Davis group had also received fewer hours overall of intervention than any of the other groups, the researchers reported that the attention-focus training the group received was the most efficient intervention for increasing reading speed.
FREE DYSLEXIA SCREENING TEST
This free, secure and confidential screening assessment will give a profile of learning strengths and weaknesses, including a measure of severity of symptoms.
Your answers are confidential. You do not need to provide any personal information to complete this assessment.
ACCESS TO WORK SCHEME
An Access to Work grant can pay for practical support if you have a disability which affects the way you perform at work, this includes dyslexia and dyspraxia.
To be eligible for the grant, you must be over 16 and either about to start work, in a paid job or self-employed.
Access to Work will pay 100% of all approved costs if:
you have started a new job and make a claim during the first six weeks
you are self-employed or run a small business
you work in a company with less than 10 staff members
you require a support worker/training.
However, if you have been in your job for 6 weeks or more, your employer will have to contribute towards the cost of support. The amount that they are required to contribute depends on the size of the organisation.
When cost sharing applies, Access to Work will refund up to 80% of the approved costs between a threshold and £10,000. The employer will have to contribute 100% of costs up to the threshold level and 20% of the costs between the threshold and £10,000. The amount of the threshold is determined by the number of employees in the company.
If you think you need help, contact your local Access to Work centre. You, not your employer, must contact with Access to Work initially.
Call 03452 688 489
or apply online at www.gov.uk/access-to-work
You’ll need to provide:
your workplace address and postcode
the name of a workplace contact who can authorise your Access to Work payments
your workplace contact’s email address or work phone number
your unique tax reference number (if you’re self-employed)
You’ll also need to explain:
how your condition affects you at work or getting to work
what help you’re already getting
what else could help you
To determine the most appropriate support (reasonable adjustments), a workplace assessment will be arranged with a workplace consultant. The assessor will visit your workplace and this gives you the opportunity to discuss the help and support you need. There is no cost for the workplace assessment. If you do not have a diagnostic assessment report, this may need to be arranged first. Access to Work may accept a good quality screening test for self-employed and some lower skilled jobs.
The assessor will write a report which will include three quotes for each support option. In most cases, as the employer has to pay towards the support so it is important to involve your manager from the start. It can also be useful to ask the assessor to meet with your IT department to ensure software recommendations are compatible with the corporate systems.
You do not have to use the companies that the report recommends. It is possible to choose your own and Access to Work will usually allow the switch if it is a reputable provider.
Contact Tania Blackmore-Squires for further information.
BURSARY FUNDS FOR DAVIS PROGRAMMES
Gifts for Dyslexia
Gifts for Dyslexia (G4D) is a Bursary Fund which provides assistance to people in financial need who would benefit from a Davis® Programme. G4D considers applications from people with dyslexia, dyspraxia, dyscalculia, attention deficit and other learning difficulties.
Davis®Programmes provide practical skills that remove obstacles to learning and everyday functioning by focusing on the distinctive dyslexic learning style. A style shared by all dyslexic individuals. Thus, the Davis® student can achieve the fullest expression of their innate gifts; moving to success in every aspect of their lives.
This programme is particularly helpful for ‘non-responders’ to phonics!
More information can be found in Ronald Davis’ book 'The Gift of Dyslexia.'
Frequently Asked Questions
What is the maximum amount of grant I can expect to receive?
Assuming funds are available, G4D will consider providing a bursary for up to 90% of the total cost of a Davis ® programme.
For more information contact Tania Blackmore-Squires or click the link below.
Davis theories and Philosophies
If you would like to find out more information about Davis, here are a few texts and links to purchase the books.
The Gift of Dyslexia
by Ronald D Davis
Here at last is a book that brings real help to people who have dyslexia.
The Gift of Learning
by Ronald D Davis
In the Gift of Learning, Davis applies his proven techniques to the four most common learning disabilities beyond dyslexia:
Attention Deficit Disorder (ADD)
Maths deficiency (dyscalculia and acalculia)
Handwriting Problems (dysgraphia and agraphia)
Why Tyranosaurus but Not If
by Richard Whitehead
'My child can read the word tyrannosaurus, but when it comes to words like if, they cannot. Why?'
This is a book of know-how about dyslexia that empower teachers, parents and dyslexics alike. Compelling insights into the workings of the dyslexic mind are coupled with proven practical strategies based on Davis techniques.
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How Was Your Experience?