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5 Easy Exercises For Dyslexic People

5 Easy Exercises For Dyslexic People

Everyone should know what the term “Dyslexia” means. It actually is a very common educational condition. According to Emily Lapkin from the website understood.org,

“It’s a common condition that affects the way the brain processes written and spoken language.”

This condition is primarily associated with trouble reading and many specialists and educators may refer to it as a “reading disorder” or a “reading disability.” You probably cannot imagine how many people in the world are affected by dyslexia, some of us might think that this issue is not too serious, or that people tend to grow out of it as they age. It is really important that if you have a child with this condition, you immediately look for specialized dyslexia teaching or help and support online (yes, there are many simple exercises for dyslexic people that you can actually do right from home).

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Here are 5 easy but effective activities you can do with dyslexic children or people to improve their skills.

1. Practice syllable and phoneme segmentation

This exercise consists of identifying how many syllables are in a word or phrase. Take time to sit with your child and ask him to tell you how many syllables a word has; repeat each syllable, counting along with numbers as well. This way, the child will be hearing, repeating and learning the correct form of the exercise.

The next step you can do is practicing the phoneme segmentation; you can read aloud to your child and let him identify how many sounds are in a syllable or a word.

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2. Missing syllables

Separating the syllables of a word can be very easy for some of us but for dyslexic people, it can be a challenge. To practice this activity, you can ask your child (or friend, or yourself) to omit a particular syllable from a word. Here’s a good example: What would be left if we remove the second syllable from the word “caramel”?

Caramel
How many syllables? 3 syllables
Divided into syllables: car-a-mel
What would be left? carmel

3. The substitution of syllables

There are many exercises that strengthen our articulation and phonology knowledge. The substitution of syllables is an easy one. Similar to number two, you ask the dyslexic person to replace a certain syllable of any word with another word. Example: Replace the 2nd syllable from the word “but-ter-fly” with the first syllable of the word “reduction.” It will result “but-re-fly”.

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Another alternative exercise you can do with syllable substitution is identifying which syllable gets repeated in two or more distinct words. For example, which letters or syllables sound the same in “alligator”, “actor” and “calculator”? The answer is the syllable “tor”.

4. Apps for Learning Disabilities

The tech market develops millions of applications for many devices every year, including some that offer educational support and learning exercises. Lectio, for example, is a mobile application built to encourage independent reading for students with language-related learning disabilities.

This way of learning has been getting really common and not only for those who have this disorder. Many schools are using this software in their programs for additional support.

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5. Sing!

Rhythm and rhyme, plus a melody make the learning process easier. Singing is poetry set to music, and kids will love this activity. Using a “sing-song” voice can be really useful in helping a child understand the concept of a syllable. Singing is a very effective way of becoming more aware of syllable and sound sequence.

Above all else, the most effective treatment for dyslexia is early detection. It’s a lifelong problem, and children with dyslexia may need special education. Attention paid at a young age can make all the difference in the future.

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Last Updated on September 10, 2018

Overcoming The Pain Of A Breakup: 3 Suggestions Based On Science

Overcoming The Pain Of A Breakup: 3 Suggestions Based On Science

We thought that the expression ‘broken heart’ was just a metaphor, but science is telling us that it is not: breakups and rejections do cause physical pain. When a group of psychologists asked research participants to look at images of their ex-partners who broke up with them, researchers found that the same brain areas that are activated by physical pain are also activated by looking at images of ex-partners. Looking at images of our ex is a painful experience, literally.[1].

Given that the effect of rejections and breakups is the same as the effect of physical pain, scientists have speculated on whether the practices that reduce physical pain could be used to reduce the emotional pain that follows from breakups and rejections. In a study on whether painkillers reduce the emotional pain caused by a breakup, researchers found that painkillers did help. Individuals who took painkillers were better able to deal with their breakup. Tamar Cohen wrote that “A simple dose of paracetamol could help ease the pain of a broken heart.”[2]

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Just like painkillers can be used to ease the pain of a broken heart, other practices that ease physical pain can also be used to ease the pain of rejections and breakups. Three of these scientifically validated practices are presented in this article.

Looking at images of loved ones

While images of ex-partners stimulate the pain neuro-circuitry in our brain, images of loved ones activate a different circuitry. Looking at images of people who care about us increases the release of oxytocin in our body. Oxytocin, or the “cuddle hormone,” is the hormone that our body relies on to induce in us a soothing feeling of tranquility, even when we are under high stress and pain.

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In fact, oxytocin was found to have a crucial role as a mother is giving birth to her baby. Despite the extreme pain that a mother has to endure during delivery, the high level of oxytocin secreted by her body transforms pain into pleasure. Mariem Melainine notes that, “Oxytocin levels are usually at their peak during delivery, which promotes a sense of euphoria in the mother and helps her develop a stronger bond with her baby.”[3]

Whenever you feel tempted to look at images of your ex-partner, log into your Facebook page and start browsing images of your loved ones. As Eva Ritvo, M.D. notes, “Facebook fools our brain into believing that loved ones surround us, which historically was essential to our survival. The human brain, because it evolved thousands of years before photography, fails on many levels to recognize the difference between pictures and people”[4]

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Exercise

Endorphins are neurotransmitters that reduce our perception of pain. When our body is high on endorphins, painful sensations are kept outside of conscious awareness. It was found that exercise causes endorphins to be secreted in the brain and as a result produce a feeling of power, as psychologist Alex Korb noted in his book: “Exercise causes your brain to release endorphins, neurotransmitters that act on your neurons like opiates (such as morphine or Vicodin) by sending a neural signal to reduce pain and provide anxiety relief.”[5] By inhibiting pain from being transmitted to our brain, exercise acts as a powerful antidote to the pain caused by rejections and breakups.

Meditation

Jon Kabat Zinn, a doctor who pioneered the use of mindfulness meditation therapy for patients with chronic pain, has argued that it is not pain itself that is harmful to our mental health, rather, it is the way we react to pain. When we react to pain with irritation, frustration, and self-pity, more pain is generated, and we enter a never ending spiral of painful thoughts and sensations.

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In order to disrupt the domino effect caused by reacting to pain with pain, Kabat Zinn and other proponents of mindfulness meditation therapy have suggested reacting to pain through nonjudgmental contemplation and acceptance. By practicing meditation on a daily basis and getting used to the habit of paying attention to the sensations generated by our body (including the painful ones and by observing these sensations nonjudgmentally and with compassion) our brain develops the habit of reacting to pain with grace and patience.

When you find yourself thinking about a recent breakup or a recent rejection, close your eyes and pay attention to the sensations produced by your body. Take deep breaths and as you are feeling the sensations produced by your body, distance yourself from them, and observe them without judgment and with compassion. If your brain starts wandering and gets distracted, gently bring back your compassionate nonjudgmental attention to your body. Try to do this exercise for one minute and gradually increase its duration.

With consistent practice, nonjudgmental acceptance will become our default reaction to breakups, rejections, and other disappointments that we experience in life. Every rejection and every breakup teaches us great lessons about relationships and about ourselves.

Featured photo credit: condesign via pixabay.com

Reference

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