Dyslexia and Specific Learning Difficulties (SpLD)

Dyslexia and Specific Learning Difficulties (SpLD)

Welcome to Learning Support's Dyslexia and SpLD page. We have developed a graduated approach to support pupils with specific learning difficulties in line with Bradford's Matrix of Need.  Click on the link below to download the document which outlines the support we provide pupils and schools at the different SEND Code of Practice stages.  

Our Graduated Approach to support pupils with SpLD (Dyslexia) 

What is Dyslexia?

Simply it is a difficulty learning to read and write despite appropriate teaching.  The difficulties are often referred to as UNEXPECTED because pupils tend to present with an uneven profile of strengths and weaknesses.   As an authority we adopt the Rose Report and British Dyslexia Association (BDA) definitions of Dyslexia.

The 2009 Rose Report defintion.

Dyslexia is a learning difficulty that primarily affects the skills involved in accurate and fluent word reading and spelling.

  • Characteristic features of dyslexia are difficulties in phonological awareness, verbal memory and verbal processing speed.
  • Dyslexia occurs across the range of intellectual abilities.
  • It is best thought of as a continuum, not a distinct category, and there are no clear cut-off points.
  • Co-occurring difficulties may be seen in aspects of language, motor co-ordination, mental calculation, concentration and personal organisation, but these are not, by themselves, markers of dyslexia.

A good indication of the severity and persistence of dyslexic difficulties can be gained by examining how the individual responds or has responded to well-founded intervention.

For further information on the Rose Review, you can access the Rose Report here


The BDA has also adopted the Rose Report's definition but added the additional paragraph below:

In addition to these characteristics, the BDA acknowledges the visual and auditory processing difficulties that some individuals with dyslexia can experience, and points out that dyslexic readers can show a combination of abilities and difficulties that affect the learning process.  Some also have strengths in other areas, such as design, problem solving, creative skills, interactive skills and oral skills.


Our Training

Learning Support provide a range of Scheduled and On-Demand courses (delivered in settings).  

Alphabet Arc (On-Demand)

20-20 Reading (On-Demand)

Precision Teaching of High Frequency Words (On-Demand)

Recognising and Managing Dyslexia and Difficulties in Literacy (On-Demand)

How to Use & Interpret the GL Dyslexia Portfolio Assessment (Scheduled)

The Multi-Sensory Literacy (MSL) course (Scheduled)


Advice Sheets

Checklist with ideas for support and intervention

Assistive Technology for pupils with Literacy Difficulties

Microsoft 365 Assistive Technology Support

How to support reading difficulties

How to support spelling difficulties

How to support working memory difficulties

Indicators of Dyslexia

Supporting pupils in the classroom

Developing Handwriting Skills


Useful Websites

British Dyslexia Association

Leeds and Bradford Dyslexia Association

Made By Dyslexia


Useful Resources

TextHelp Read/Write Gold






 Developmental Dyscalculia was defined by the Department for Education and Skills (2001) as:

 “A condition that affects the ability to acquire arithmetical skills. Dyscalculic learners may have difficulty understanding simple number concepts, lack an intuitive grasp of numbers, and have problems learning number facts and procedures. Even if they produce a correct answer or use a correct method, they may do so mechanically and without confidence.”

 Indicators of Dyscalculia are:

  • Difficulties understanding concepts of number and place value
  • Difficulties estimating quantity
  • Difficulties with money
  • Difficulties remembering sequences
  • Difficulties with telling the time

To support children with dyscalculic difficulties, it is important to identify their mathematical understanding and establish their misconceptions. This information should then inform personalised objectives to be incorporated into their daily teaching.   Teaching strategies should incorporate lots of over- learning, be cumulative and highly multi-sensory.


What our team offers

Members of our team can support schools in identifying pupils with Maths Difficulties and provide advice and support in line with our graduated approach.  


Below are some games and resources you may find useful.

Maths Ten Top Tips

Maths Ideas with Playing Cards and Dice

Maths Games to Play with a Pack of Cards

Rhyme to learn number bonds

Addacus: This is a structured programme that can be delivered on a one-to-one basis or in small groups. Follow the link for more information. If you require training using the Addacus programme, please contact your link teacher.

Numicon Programmes: These are resources that can be incorporated into maths teaching or used as an individual programme. Follow the link for more information

The Dyscalculia Toolkit by Ronit Bird: This is a tool kit with practical activities to teach key mathematical concepts.

Plus 1 and the Power of 2:  These books teach early maths skills and may be used as part of an individualised programme.

Dynamo Maths:  This is an online programme programme designed for pupils with dyscalculia or maths difficulties.

Catch-Up Numeracy: Teaching Assistants need to be trained to deliver this course.  The programme is a structured approach to teaching key number concepts.  Contact Nicola Robinson, Beth Roberts or Nicola Gaunt for more information about this programme.


Some Memory Game Resources

Page owned by Fiona Whitaker, last updated on 18/01/2023. This page has been viewed 6,682 times.