In our previous blogs, we’ve discussed reasons why dyslexia is so misunderstood and it’s so difficult to find help for your child with dyslexia. Much of the problem stems from not looking at the whole child when exploring learning difficulties. We discussed dyslexia using the analogy of a tree—the leaves, the branches, and the trunk.
Level Four: Roots, Trunk, Branches, and Leaves
The fourth layer includes the trunk, branches, and leaves, and adds the nourishment of the tree that comes from the soil, the roots, and the growing conditions. This holistic fourth level brings them all together to show how they influence and interact with each other.
All of these affect how the tree grows, and they affect how your child with dyslexia operates. For your child, this translates to:
• How safety and security affect your child’s learning.
• How your child’s unique brain chemistry impacts his or her learning ability and capacity.
• How environment and heredity influence brain chemistry.
• How good and bad nutrition affect brain function.
• How your family’s routines around eating, play, exercise, and sleep affect your child’s learning.
Level four takes into account the whole child and the long-term picture, not just immediate crises. When you work with me, you’ll see more than just the trees near you, to continue with the tree analogy. I see the forest and the path out to the sunshine, and I can show them to you and your child. We help free you from a particular mindset from being stuck in the dense forest for so long. We show you another angle—a bird’s-eye view, so to speak.
The fourth level encompasses all the possible factors affecting your child, not just those you or the schools have been able to identify. This is important, because if you plant your child in a different forest next year (meaning you send him or her to a different school or try a different treatment), but you don’t address all the factors you can, the problem may have a different environment, but you haven’t made headway in solving anything.
At this level, we want a lasting solution, not a quick fix. We don’t want a band-aid, we want a therapy that works. We want results that truly help your child for the long term. Therapies that do this are few and far between. We expect fast answers and quick solutions. With dyslexia, there are none.
Some approaches, such as Waldorf Schools and Montessori Schools, set up an environment that helps children with dyslexia to be independent and self-regulating. They help your child succeed by focusing on him or her as an individual. Books Neural Therapy™ (BNT), a structural and neurological repatterning technique, helps your child to release patterns in the nervous system that blocked the learning process.
Unfortunately, you will need to go outside the public school system to find this type of expansive, holistic therapy. Within the schools, your child’s Individual Educational Plan (IEP) includes only the services available in the school district. This means that your child is likely to receive care he or she doesn’t need instead of the therapy he or she does need.
When you work with therapists or schools that offer this expansive view, your child with dyslexia will improve, but following through on those recommendations may require investment of money and time for a certain time, typically several months to a year or more.
If you’d like more information about BNT or the Waldorf or Montessori schools, please contact me.