My name is Lottie, I am 8 years old and I go to school at St Mary’s RC Primary in Edinburgh. I have dyslexia and dyspraxia, which can make school and life tricky sometimes.
Two friends in my class, Lauren and Scarlett both also have dyslexia, and we all face different challenges. At school, friends sometimes wonder why certain tasks are harder for us, whilst we find other things really easy. Other people wonder why I have a slope board to write on. We decided that we wanted to talk to our classmates about dyslexia and dyspraxia, and to explain how it can affect people. Our teacher, Miss Murphy encouraged us to share our ideas. It all started as ‘The Lottie Project’ and we ended up calling it the ‘Lottie, Lauren and Scarlett Project’!
The Lottie, Lauren and Scarlett Project
We decided which things were important to us and, with the help of my mum (who works with people who have dyslexia and dyspraxia), we put together a session plan. We talked about what dyslexia is, how it affects us and explained that there is a good side, like being creative. We used activities (reading blurred writing and trying to write with the wrong hand) to show how it can feel, and how frustrating it can be to have dyslexia/dyspraxia. We showed photos of famous people, like Lewis Hamilton and Princess Beatrice, who have dyslexia. When we used a pretend brain to explain how we are wired differently, people loved it!
Helping classmates to understand
Afterwards, we watched a film about one boy’s experience of having dyslexia. We also explained the things we can find hard and things that help us. Our classmates were allowed to ask us questions at the end, and this let us explain anything they did not understand. People were able to borrow from a selection of books about dyslexia and dyspraxia. They also took leaflets home for their parents and fun worksheets to complete.
We really enjoyed presenting our session and our teacher was so impressed that we were awarded Certificates of Achievement at Assembly in front of the school. Having a teacher like ours who understands dyslexia and encourages us, helps a lot.
Want to start your own project?
For a copy of the session plan and book list, please contact: firstname.lastname@example.org
Pupils: Lottie; Lauren and Scarlett (P4a)