Dyslexia is a term that is often stigmatized and is a learning disorder characterized by difficulty in reading and processing written and spoken communication. Many youth diagnosed with this learning disorder simply fall through the cracks in the public school system or even worse, are never correctly diagnosed, labeled as slow learners, and never attain the success in life of which they are truly capable.
Amariana Thomas, a resident at one of our Texas communities, is a youth program participant and also living with dyslexia. Rainbow’s onsite Resident Services Coordinator (RSC) noticed that Amariana, who is always so vibrant and outgoing, was having difficulties with her assigned homework during the Youth Programming Homework Power Hour. After speaking with Amariana’s family and discovering she was diagnosed with dyslexia, Rainbow’s RSC reached out to her school teacher to develop a plan to assist Amariana in overcoming her diagnosis and improving her grades.
Mrs. Gerber, Amariana’s school teacher, met with Rainbow’s RSC, Amariana, and her parents and together they solidified an afterschool curriculum to assist Amariana with her school work. Free tutoring twice a week at Rainbow’s Youth Learning Lab (provided by Mrs. Gerber) offered Amariana an opportunity to practice her spelling words, learn new ways of understanding and comprehending reading assignments, as well as one-on-one time with her school teacher allowing for a more concentrated focus on Amariana’s studies.
Through the collaboration with Amariana’s teacher, Rainbow’s RSC also learned new tools that could be utilized to assist her with her homework or reading on days when Mrs. Gerber was not tutoring. After a few weeks, it was very evident that improvement was being made and Amariana’s excitement for reading and learning had flourished. Within a few months of working together, Amariana’s mother met with Rainbow’s RSC and shared she had received a phone call from Mrs. Gerber explaining that Amariana had moved up two reading levels and is at the highest reading level possible within her class.
Through the collaborative processes put into place by Rainbow, Amariana is on her way to continued academic success.[blockquote]”Amariana said to me while posing for her picture with her favorite book, ‘Thank you, Ms. Richlyn, for doing this article on me I feel special and now I’m going to go read another chapter!’ ”[/blockquote]
Rainbow Youth Learning Lab at Rush Creek apartments located at 1200 Sublett Rd, Arlington, TX 76017
For more information about Rainbow Housing Assistance Corporation, please contact Justin Walker, Director of Business Development at (480) 719-7498.