Community Education

Three girls on blacktop

The goal of our Community Education program is to share the wealth of knowledge that exists about dyslexia, to promote dyslexia awareness, and to provide parents and teachers with research-proven practices to support dyslexic students. We hope you will join us for one of our events!

Community Ed Events

CLICK THE EVENT TO REGISTER. Space is limited and advance registration is required for Community Education Events. Continuing Professional Education credits are available for educators. Email learn@rawsonsaunders.org for more information.

SPECIAL GUEST PRESENTER: JUSTIN SU'A

JANUARY 7, 2019
5:00 - 7:00 PM
Tarrytown United Methodist Church

REGISTER HERE. Registration is required.

Justin Su'a is an inspiring speaker and the author of Parent Pep Talks. He is the mental performance coach for the athletes in the NFL, US Army, and the world champion Boston Red Sox. Justin will be sharing the same strategies and principles he uses with elite performers to help families win at home. He will teach how to cultivate the growth mindset, build confidence, and learn from failure.

FEBRUARY 21, 2019
6:30 - 8:00 PM 
Rawson Saunders School

REGISTER HERE. Registration is required.

The reading brain is an amazing system of processes and connections that fire at speeds faster than we can imagine. The dyslexic brain is that and so much more. It is extraordinary. Come to this event to experience a multisensory tour through the dyslexic brain and leave with a feeling of empowerment of all that individuals with dyslexia have to offer to our world.

APRIL 18, 2019
6:30 - 8:30 PM
Rawson Saunders Institute

REGISTER HERE. Registration is required.

Discover the brain-based causes of dyslexia through interactive activities. Examine the educational impact of dyslexia on students and the instructional methods that support their literacy development. Leave with tips on how to support dyslexic students at home and school.

MAY 4, 2019
9:30 AM - 11:30 AM 
Rawson Saunders School

REGISTER HERE. Registration is required.

Our most popular event! Join members of the Rawson Saunders faculty for an immersive and interactive event designed to simulate the challenges and frustrations dyslexic students face daily when their dyslexia is misunderstood or unsupported. Following the simulation, participants will engage in a thought-provoking discussion.

 

Here are some of the events we offer throughout the year:

Dyslexia 101

Discover the brain-based causes of dyslexia through interactive activities. Examine the learning profiles of students with dyslexia as well as instructional methods that support their literacy development. Learn about local and national dyslexia resources available to students, parents, and educators.

Understanding the Dyslexic Experience

Our most popular event! Join members of the Rawson Saunders faculty for an immersive and interactive event designed to simulate the challenges and frustrations dyslexic students face daily when their dyslexia is misunderstood or unsupported. Following the simulation, participants will engage in a thought-provoking discussion.

Bringing Fun to the Home Reading Assignment

Your child is required to read to you for a certain number of minutes each night. Do you struggle with motivating your child to complete the requirement? Come to this session to learn ideas for bringing fun back to this time with your child.

Making Sense of Math with Visual Models

Solving math word problems can be—well, a problem!—for many students, especially in the ways that reading and understanding also come into play. Visual models are valuable tools to help students "see the math." Dr. Janna Smith, RS Math Department Chair, will share strategies we use at Rawson Saunders to help students decode the language of math and become powerful problem solvers.

Dyslexia FAQs

What is dyslexia?

Dyslexia is a neurologically based, specific learning difference that interferes with the acquisition and processing of language. Varying in degrees of severity, dyslexia primarily affects a person’s ability to read text and often also affects writing, spelling, handwriting, and sometimes math. Individuals with dyslexia are bright and may have significant strengths in multiple areas.

Who does dyslexia affect?

According to the International Dyslexia Association, 15-20% of the population have symptoms of dyslexia. It exists in every part of the world, in every country and culture, wherever there is written language. Dyslexia affects individuals regardless of gender, race, native language, or socio-economic background. Dyslexia is genetic in origin and tends to run in families.

What causes dyslexia?

The precise causes of dyslexia have yet to be discovered but anatomical and brain imagery show slight differences in the way the brain of a dyslexic person develops and functions, specifically in regards to reading. Written language is a code of abstract symbols and individuals with dyslexia have varying degrees of difficulty deciphering that code. Because dyslexia is a genetic trait, many members of the same family may be dyslexic. It is important to note that dyslexia is never due to lack of intelligence, motivation, nor an inability to learn.

What are the signs of dyslexia?

There is a wide spectrum for dyslexia, from mild to severe, and its impact is different for each individual depending on the scope of their dyslexia and the effectiveness of instruction and remediation. Dyslexia can manifest itself in the following ways:

  • difficulty decoding words (reading)
  • difficulty encoding words (spelling)
  • lack of awareness of sounds in words
  • unusual speech patterns such as halted speech, mixing up sounds of words, mispronunciation, confusing words that sound alike, or difficulty rhyming
  • poor sequencing of letters in words when reading or writing (this can also occur with numbers)
  • problems with reading comprehension
  • difficulty expressing thoughts in written form
  • difficulty with handwriting
  • difficulty in mathematics, particularly sequencing of steps, symbol confusion, and rote memorization of facts
  • confusion about directions in space or time (right and left, months, days)
  • poor organizational skills

Can dyslexia be treated?

While there is no “cure” for dyslexia, specific teaching techniques and remediation have been proven to greatly reduce the difficulties associated with dyslexia. Early intervention and specific structured learning strategies such as multisensory instruction, individualized attention, and academic language therapy are key to rapid remediation. With appropriate teaching methods, dyslexics can excel academically and become skillful, life-long readers.

Dyslexia’s challenges are outweighed by tremendous advantages, specifically in intelligence and creativity.

“Dyslexia is an island of weakness … surrounded by a sea of strengths.” —Sally Shaywitz, M.D., The Yale Center for Dyslexia & Creativity

Reading/Viewing

Be sure to check out the Rawson Saunders Facebook page for the latest in dyslexia news!

Websites

The International Dyslexia Association is a world-wide nonprofit organization dedicated to helping individuals with dyslexia, their families, and the communities that support them.

Understood is a welcoming and comprehensive online resource and support center for parents of children with learning and attention details.

The 1 in 5 Initiative is Learning Ally's campaign to promote public awareness of dyslexia and offer inspiration and resources to the millions of individuals affected by it.

The Yale Center for Dyslexia & Creativity serves as a nexus for research on dyslexia and is a leading source of information and advocacy to better the lives of people with dyslexia.

Made by Dyslexia is a global charity led by Richard Branson and other successful dyslexics. Their purpose is to help the world properly understand and support dyslexia.

Dyslexic Advantage is an offshoot of the book by the same name and is a tremendous resource for dyslexia information and advocacy. It has become one of the world's largest dyslexia-focused communities.

Headstrong Nation is a positive and empowering advocacy group created by and for dyslexics.

Decoding Dyslexia is a parent-leg grassroots movement for dyslexia.

The Dyslexia Foundation is a nonprofit organization founded in 1989 to identify and assist children with dyslexia through specialized programs, conferences, and research projects throughout the world.

The Power of Dyslexia is dedicated to focusing on the positive effects that dyslexia can have on a person's life and in the world.

Science and Dyslexia at the Harvard-Smithsonian Center for Astrophysics conducts research on dyslexia and specifically how and why dyslexics may have natural aptitudes in science.

The Child Mind Institute is committed to finding effective and compassionate treatments for childhood psychiatric and learning differences.

Target the Problem is a tool to help parents and classroom teachers understand the specific problems a child may be having with reading. This site provides practical suggestions on what you (and kids themselves) can do to help students overcome or deal with their reading difficulties.

Books

Blogs

Film/Video

For Kids

Professional Organizations

International Dyslexia Association is a nonprofit organization dedicated to promoting reading excellence for all children through early identification of dyslexia, effective literacy education for adults and children with dyslexia, and teacher training.

The National Center for Learning Disabilities is an advocacy group which works to ensure that the nation's 15 million children, adolescents and adults with learning disabilities have every opportunity to succeed in school, work and life. This website includes information on services, educational programs, and legislative initiatives.

Academic Language Therapy Association (ALTA) Academic language therapy helps develop effective secondary language and written communication skills through proficiency in reading and writing. The Academic Language Therapy Association® (ALTA) is a nonprofit national professional organization for the purpose of establishing, maintaining, and promoting standards of education, practice and professional conduct for Certified Academic Language Therapists.

The Academy of Orton-Gillingham Practitioners and Educators promotes public awareness of the needs of children and adults with dyslexia, and of the Orton-Gillingham approach for the treatment of dyslexia. They also provide teacher training and certification as well as accreditation of programs that train Orton-Gillingham practitioners and educators.

The International Multisensory Structured Language Education Council (IMSLEC) is an accrediting organization setting high professional standards in the preparation of Multisensory Structured Language specialists — clinicians and teachers.

Learning Ally is a nonprofit volunteer organization, and is the nation's educational library serving people who cannot effectively read standard print because of visual impairment, dyslexia, or other physical barrier.

The Society for the Scientific Study of Reading (SSSR) promotes the scientific study of reading and disseminates information and related areas as language and literacy, making research in this area widely available.

US Department of Education has information on the government's policies and procedures concerning the education of our children, including those with special needs.

Admissions Information Sessions

Admissions Information Sessions are parent-only.

Sessions begin at 9:30 AM and conclude at 11:30 AM. 

To reserve a spot, please submit this rSVP form.


For those interested in our Upper School, please contact the Admissions Office directly.

Request Information

For more information or if you have any questions, please call (512) 476-8382, email admissions@rawsonsaunders.org.

Rawson Saunders
Office of Admission
2614A Exposition Blvd.
Austin, Texas 78703