Dyslexia and learning.

Imeera

New member
I have moderate dyslexia and have problems with sequences (esspecially if they are said quickly) and my right and left. I have been trying to work on Rachle Brice's Serpintine, most of it is okay but sometimes it is NOT dyslexia friendly. Right left right, left right left while going up or down fast sequence said very fast and in opposite because she is facing the camera AAHHHH!!! By the time I have worked it out she has already moved up to full speed. I like the DvD but it is certainly proving challenging. I have used the rewind button more than usual. Its very hard to keep up. So wondering, are any of you dyslexic? How did you get over the complex fast right and left combos and the fact they are doing it opposite to you on the screen? Did you just battle though it taking longer doing the moves or did you have a trick to help you?
 

Darshiva

Moderator
Try popping a portable mirror in front of the tv so it reflects rachel & you can see it but preferably not your reflection (or you may end up more muddled. The mirror will reverse the image so what she's doing will correspond to what you're seeing.
 

Yame

New member
I am not dyslexic, but I would probably have some difficulty in this situation. I think most people have trouble following someone who is in front of them, facing them, and NOT mirrorring what they are doing.

What I usually do when a DVD is recorded that way is just follow whatever the image is doing and ignore the direction prompts. For example if the person lifts her right arm, I will lift my arm that mirrors their right arm, which will be my left arm, even if she is telling me to lift my right. I'm not sure if that would still be confusing to you, though.
 

Greek Bonfire

Well-known member
I am not dyslexic either but I do find it easier to always mirror the person who is demonstrating something to me. In fact, many instructors will do just that - they will tell you to move right while they are moving left.

Darshiva has a great suggestion for this too.
 

Rue

New member
I'm not dyslexic either...but I have some left/right confusion which doesn't help...and I seem to be blessed with an over-abundance of slow-twitch muscles...

I can figure it all out...but it takes me forever...longer than average...

Regardless of the reasons...I think you'll find yourself in good company!:lol:
 

Aziyade

Well-known member
Imeera, as a person with dyslexia, do you have any particular issues with any classroom instruction? I ask because I don't know if any of my students ARE dyslexic, but I never thought about how that would affect how I teach.

Do you have any insights on this? Maybe a "what I wish teachers knew about dyslexia" kind of post? I'm sure a lot of us would find it helpful, now or at some point in the future. Thank you!
 

Shanazel

Super Moderator
I am seriously right /left challenged and have completely given up giving my students right/left directions. I point out east/north/west/south and use cardinal directions in class.
 

Rue

New member
I am seriously right /left challenged and have completely given up giving my students right/left directions. I point out east/north/west/south and use cardinal directions in class.
LOL...I can do directions just fine too - and figure it out quickly ...but NOT left and right - that takes me forever...and it just doesn't make sense to me.

If I have to I'll write an L and an R on my hands...to speed things up a bit...
 

jenc

New member
i have the problem of not being able to follow sequences - to paraphrase Eric morecombe - I know all of the moves - not necessarily in the right order.

One of my tchers says clockwise or ant-clockwise for turns. i have to imagine a clockface and then twist it into the corresponding orientation - by which time we've finished the routine. i prefer to turn across the body or to turn back - clear to me and the right/left challenged. It is also easier for me then to remember which way to turn first if we repeat the move facing in the opposite direction.
 

Kashmir

New member
I have a weak verbal grasp of right & left ie the words take a while to process but I know what side my watch used to be on and I do the watch side/other side thing sometimes in my head. Basically if I hear someone going Right Left Left Right - I start on the correct foot (hip etc) and just listen for the changes - that is I used them for just timing prompts while dancing. If I get out of step it takes a while to slip back in. While actually learning I can work out what is needed and train my body.

This has all been made worse by teaching - ie facing the class I say "left" and move my right; back to class left is left again. But it does mean I learn all choreographies in mirror as well as straight.
 

SidraK

New member
My teacher, depending on how busy/underslept she is, sometimes uses "left" and "right" interchangeably and irrespective of the direction she's going. We do however have the luxury of a studio with mirrors, so she can face in the same direction as us. Sometimes it's best just to follow!

I did a duo a few years back with a dyslexic friend and our biggest challenge was practicing in my living room and attempting to orient ourselves to each other and the layout of the venue we usually perform at. We ended up taping signs up: "audience", "stage door", "back of stage" because my friend found it easier to relate to a fixed object than "you start to my left". There was a lot of spinning and moving back and forth across each other in the choreography which was very difficult for her.
 

Kashmir

New member
I did a duo a few years back with a dyslexic friend and our biggest challenge was practicing in my living room and attempting to orient ourselves to each other and the layout of the venue we usually perform at. We ended up taping signs up: "audience", "stage door", "back of stage" because my friend found it easier to relate to a fixed object than "you start to my left".
I had a student once who knew exactly what direction she was facing. We had to practice facing south because that was how the stage faced! Took me a while to work out the problem. I'd thrown a row of cushions and said "that's the audience" and she kept insisting they were behind us!
 

Imeera

New member
Imeera, as a person with dyslexia, do you have any particular issues with any classroom instruction? I ask because I don't know if any of my students ARE dyslexic, but I never thought about how that would affect how I teach.

Do you have any insights on this? Maybe a "what I wish teachers knew about dyslexia" kind of post? I'm sure a lot of us would find it helpful, now or at some point in the future. Thank you!
I wish all teachers were like you! Some of them don't care or treat you like a baby. Once I actually got asked if I needed something reading for me when I was nineteen. Nineteen! Just because I mentioned that I was dyslexic xD
In the class room specifically for belly dance, I don't think you will be doing any maths or spelling exercises there =p There are a few things that I, and others, may have problems with.
It depends on how dyslexic a person is and it different for all of us. With teaching you really have to be aware of one thing. Sequences! All dyslexic people have problems with this, to different degrees. Many things are effected because I have trouble remembering or taking in sequences.

It helps if you slow down when you explain a complex move, especially if it involves right or left, you probably do this already as a teacher for beginners but even if I was advanced and learning a new move it still needs a bit more time to sink in sometimes, if you say it too quickly I would probably remember the last thing you said and thats it xD Also putting a complex string of moves together for the first few times can be hard esspecially if they say things too quickly. Hence I have problems following choreography moves from DvDs, they are said too quickly and I forget what they said when they move onto the next thing and the first few times I have no idea what I am doing to the extent I am getting everything third or fourth move. What SidraK said about her friend is very true, turn, spin ect left or right has no meaning to us or we have to think for a bit about which is our left or right and then which way to spin or turn. Giving an object to turn to will help it can be anything like "turn towards the window" or "on the arm that is up, move it around spinning towards the pillar".

Also if we have to do it forward then backwards or vice versa. Reversing things can be difficult. Its like repeating, without reading, a long string of numbers in reverse from what was said to you. I can't do that past three numbers xD

I this is everything I can think of now. These things are general and I haven't said everything that could effect us because I may not know them. Because I don't know what is normal I can't say what is effected. The things I have said I have learnt about all my life so I know when to ask for help. The best thing really is, if you know they are dyslexic, is to ask what you can do to help. Also there are many things that overlap with things everyone experiences. This is true but it can be worsened by dyslexia and it never goes away ie you never get used to it. If you are worried ask your class if any of them have learning difficulties. There may be someone there with Autism or other learning difficulties. Then ask them if you can do anything different for them. It may be no if it isn't server, it may be yes. Its important that they know they can ask you for help without feeling embaressed either during or even after class. Thats a big thing. I have struggled in class without asking for help because I was too embaressed to ask for help as everyone else was getting it fine.

Thank you all of you for your help! It is wonderful as always! =D
 
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Caroline_afifi

New member
I have Dyslexia and was diagnosed as an adult through my work. I attended training courses and identified with everything, so went to occupational health for tests.

I cannot do left or right at all, I cannot do sequence, I see things in pictures and anything which changes direction too many times is a non starter for me.

I think it is important to realise your areas of weakness, try to do stuff and dont just assume you cant, but not beat yourself up and think you are stupid if you cant achieve it.

I generally laugh at myself now when I am charging in a different direction to everyone else..

I think people need to consider how many people are actually Dyslexic when they make up their routines and choreography.. I avoid them like the plague.

If shouting 'left and right', it is useful to signal with the arms too.
 

Imeera

New member
I have Dyslexia and was diagnosed as an adult through my work. I attended training courses and identified with everything, so went to occupational health for tests.

I cannot do left or right at all, I cannot do sequence, I see things in pictures and anything which changes direction too many times is a non starter for me.

I think it is important to realise your areas of weakness, try to do stuff and dont just assume you cant, but not beat yourself up and think you are stupid if you cant achieve it.

I generally laugh at myself now when I am charging in a different direction to everyone else..

I think people need to consider how many people are actually Dyslexic when they make up their routines and choreography.. I avoid them like the plague.

If shouting 'left and right', it is useful to signal with the arms too.
Of course =] I used to hate having to ask for help or admit I couldn't do it. If someone pointed out a mistake I used to snap at them. Now I just accept it and laugh. Like I found out my entire life I had been spelling lettuce wrong, I spelt it "lettus" and no one had told me until my partner pointed it out yesterday. It was hilarious.

Kashmir said:
I had a student once who knew exactly what direction she was facing. We had to practice facing south because that was how the stage faced! Took me a while to work out the problem. I'd thrown a row of cushions and said "that's the audience" and she kept insisting they were behind us!
Haha. Aww bless. She should have just said what was wrong =D I suppose if it works why not do it the other way around. If it was better for her. But I can see why she did it, that would totally confuse me as well xD
 

Imeera

New member
How do they diagnose dyslexia? What are some of the traits that show up?
You have to go though some tests. I was diagnosed at at around 8/9 but had to take a test at High school for my GCSEs, at College for my A levels and at Univertiy for my degree. At Uni the women who did it had the gaul to say it might have gone away in a really condescending way. What cheek! I showed her when I couldn't say numbers backwards =D

It was always differently but generally your timed reading, asked to sort shapes out, checked on your vocabulary and English skills (written and spoken) and maths skills which includes sequencing of numbers.

The traits are writting letters backwards or mixed up, which I do offten like writing a p as a b or a b as a d. Problems with maths and spelling (though most people will only say spelling but maths is affected too). Sequencing is a big one, I can't remember my phone number for example. Also people with dyslexia tend to not be slow as in stupid but it takes time for numbers or letters to go in to the brain and then to paper if saying them. People, even my family still, when I ask how to spell something, some of the time they say it too fast so I have to stop them and ask them to spell it slower so I can actually get the letters down. If your interested I would do some research on it. You will find more information than I have said =]
 
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