In 1994, Lois Letchford was told that her son had failed first grade. Nicholas was only seven, but his ability to focus and, as a result, read and write, was – his teachers said – far behind what his peers could do.
Even after a whole year of school, by the end of year one Nicholas could only read ten words. Standardised testing showed that he had “no strengths” and a low IQ.
Lois sought an alternative option. She took Nicholas out of school, becoming both his teacher and his advocate.
In 1994, Lois had no idea that, twenty years later, she would see her son cross the stage at Oxford University to receive his Ph.D. in Applied Mathematics.
Through her journey with Nicholas, Lois discovered a passion for education and nurturing the talents of seemingly learning impaired children. She became a reading specialist, teaching children who failed to learn to read through numerous traditional reading programs, and wrote a book about her experience with Nicholas, titled ‘Reversed: A Memoir’.
These days, Lois speaks to parents and teachers worldwide at conferences, events, and schools about strategies which can be used to assist students in becoming successful readers. In March, this year, she is teaming up with SPELD Queensland in presenting similar workshops around Queensland – including a stop at All Saints Anglican School at Merrimac, on the Gold Coast, on Monday March 18.
In a two-for-one workshop, you will hear from both Lois and Marion McMahon about ways to understand and address learning differences. Marion will kick things off at 3.30pm with a workshop that focuses on Understanding Learning Differences, and Lois will speak on the topic, ‘Teaching the Gifted or Dyslexic Child: Same or Different?’ at 4.45pm after a short break.
Tickets are $33pp for SPELD Members, and $55 for the general public to attend both sessions. Head to www.speld.org.au to register your attendance.