There has been a surge in interest from the preschool community recently reflecting the acknowledgement of the importance of early intervention for children with or at-risk of dyslexia.
The DAS Specialised Educational Services Preschool Seminar “Supporting the Diverse Learning Needs of Preschoolers” on Friday, 16th March 2018 at the Lifelong Learning Institute was sold out with 320 participants. The preschool community was well represented with attendance from the PAP Community Foundation (PCF) Preschools, the Early Childhoold Development Agency (ECDA), SEED Insitute, KKH, NUH as well as preschool teachers from MOE Kindergartens and many other preschools. This is the 6th edition of our Preschool Seminar and all places were also taken up at the Seminars in 2016 and 2017.
We have also seen increased requests for more information. DAS conducted Dyslexia Awareness Talks in 19 and 25 preschools in 2016 and 2017 respectively. There have already been 20 requests from preschools for Awareness Talks since the start of 2018. Responding to feedback, DAS Academy has launched two Preschool workshops and a certificate for Preschool Teachers in 2018.
Consequently, enrolment for the DAS SES Preschool Programme increased from 275 to 319 from end of 2016 to end of 2017. The above reflects a growing awareness and wish for knowledge and skills to support preschool students at risk of dyslexia and specific learning differences. It also reflects the increasing recognition of the importance of early intervention for these children.
While it is too early to diagnose younger preschool children for dyslexia, all stakeholders agree that it is imperative we address their literacy difficulties early.
Lee Siang is the Chief Executive Officer of the Dyslexia Association of Singapore. He regularly notes down his thoughts on the DAS Blog.