Wednesday, 31 May 2017

Exams

we are coming into exam time at the moment (in the UK atleast) for people in school or college etc. i thought it a good time to write a blog about dyspraxia/ dyspraxics and exams but also for other as i know exam time can be difficult for a lot of people not just those with learning difficulties

but im going to start by saying that in my experience exams have never seemed to be an accurate or efficient way of testing knowledge or skill to me atleast they have always seemed more like a memory test especially with subjects that dont have definitive answers like english etc.however i can see that subjects like maths (and to an extent) science the correct answer is always going to be the correct answer so is perhaps a slighlty more accurate way although it is still a test of memory (how tu do certain aspects of it)

but in terms of preparing for exams revision is important even if it is just quick testing of yourself but dont just sit revising (reading) for hours take regular breaks when you need to otherwise i found you can just start getting bored and stop taking stuff in  and by testing yourself you can find what you are not so good or confident at and focus a bit more time to those things although you should contine to work on the other things aswell. revising is just like anything else in that most importantly you need to find what works for you whether that is taking tests, reading up on things or leaving notes around the house.

getting the correct supports in place is something that is also incredibly important especially for those with learning difficulties if neccesary this could be variety from having extra time to using a laptop or a scribe/reader. for my exams i had a scribe from GCSE's through to university and it helps if you can be in a different room which i wasn't for GCSE and sixth form. i have mentioned some of this in a previous blog here http://bit.ly/2qiOAfx

Monday, 1 May 2017

Memory

memory and dyspraxia is something that many people dont seem to understand. how someone could forget something they've only just been told and poor short term memory is a common trait among many but not all dyspraxics.
as just mentioned short term memory is said to be poor amongst dyspraxic people but they tend to have quite good mid to long term memory and that kind of describes me a little bit i often tend to forget things sometimes even though i repeatedly tell myself to do them for example fairly recently i needed to re-send an email and everytime i went on to my laptop i could never remmebr to do it even if i was on my email and it eventually took about 3 or 4 days to do it yet i can remember some things in quite a lot of detail from 10+ years ago whether they were quite memorable events or sometimes even just some other random things.
when it comes to very short term memory i do think that if its a single instruction without much interuption then its all ok but if theres more than one thing to do and more than one instruction then im likely to forget some part of it which is something that is quite common among dyspraxics which is why when you see things about learning disabiloity and teaching teachers are advised to simplify their instruction and go through any steps that may be needed one at a time which is something we could potentially do in everyday life as well.
some tips to help with remmbering to do things could be to have notes as reminders around the house or a list of things to do and tick them off as they are done or even setting a range of alarms/reminders on phones etc.

Friday, 14 April 2017

Sensitivity

sensitivity or hyper/hypo sensitivity is something that can and does impact on many dyspraxic people quite a lot and in this blog post im goign tot go through what it means and how people can be affected.

to start with all the aspects of sensitivity can be affected by dyspraxia such as taste, touch,sight, smell and sound. all these senses are quite clear to most people but those who have dyspraxia can have very different reactions to the same or only slighlty differring situations and thats where hypo and hyper sensitivity comes in hypo-sensitivity means someone may not react at lot less if at all compared to someone else and hyper-sensitivity is the exact opposite and someone feels something very strongly and it can be quite extreme either way. the same person can experience both ends of the scale as well for example somehting fairly minor like a little bending of the finger hurt quite a lot but something severe a broken leg (tibia-shin bone) didnt really hurt at all.

this can often affect clothing some people may not like the feellof certain clothes or if the fit is not just right it can prove difficult to wear certain items for me one is jeans which ive never worn.  

it is not just touch/feel that is affceted often light has an impact aswell such as when a light is turned on in the dark which can hurt the eyes sometimes or they struggle to see and visibly have to adjust and its not always that extreme it can just be the differnece in light in different room/buildings. this is something that happens to me sometimes often when ging from outside to inside.

tatse and textures is something that a lot of dyspraxics can have trouble with as well potentially even not being able to taste the flavours of certain foods but the texture often causes the biggest problem even making it almost impossoble to eat certain things but i'll go through this in another blog.

Sunday, 26 March 2017

Travel/New Places

i thought of combining this blog with the public transport one but felt it best to do this on its own because as dyspraxics newplaces and new situations can be quite daunting and not just the travelling part of it although that can have a large impact.

as i said travel can be large part of some difficulties when going to new places because of short term memory and sense of direction as well as spatial awareness which can make it diffcult travelling not just too a certain place but possibly even exploring new areas however new technology such as phones satnav etc. make it a lot easier and the internet something like google maps street view is something that has helped me alot as you can sometimes see 'markers' on street view things like signs, a certain building etc. that you then recognise to reassure yourself or use as refernce points when travelling.i actually used google street view to plan most of the cycle i did almost 2 years ago (streetviewed over 2000 miles)

something that isnt noticed that much i find is that you become a bit more aware of your self when in new situations and have to focus a bit more on things very simple such as sometimes even walkingso that you dont walk into something or someone whereas when you are somehwere you know you ont really have to think about certiain things as much

Wednesday, 15 March 2017

Public Transport

Public transport buses, trains etc. can be quite daunting for some people whether neurodiverse or not especially if travelling somehwere new or on your own. if its a journey that you know you will be doing regularly like a new school or workplace it gets a lot easier and becomes a part of your routine although if its a one off journey you may not be that comfortable and there might be bits of the journey that you dont know like where to go to get from train to bus or how to get to the next platform for me when im at train stations i dont know i often doubt myself and start thinking am i in the right on the right platform and in some cases is the next train the one i want to get on or not. when i first went to my high school i had to get a train and then a bus i found the train quite easy because it was a short journey i got on at the 1st stop and got off at the last but when it came to the bus i had no idea which bus went anywear near my school and i remmebr that there were two peoplein the same school uniform in front of me and when i got on the bus i just said the same things as them hoping it was the right place as this became a regular journey i got used to it and eventually i started to cycle or walk the bus part of the journey. sometimes not very often i travel to london by train which i can find a little bit awkward as some of the station are very big and quite busy and i can struggle to find my way around them and sometime si find myself looking around trying to work out where i am and where i need to be and more often than not i end up asking someone where the platform is hoping its fairly simple.
some useful tips are if you have a smart phone then you should be able to check times etc. if youre unsure and sometimes whether there are delays or you could have a small pocket size notepad and write down all the times and what platforms and any direction if needed.