My journey with the Dyslexia Association of Singapore (DAS) started back when I was in Primary school. I had just been told that I had dyslexia and would be attending lessons at DAS, I remember very fondly the first day that I visited the DAS Learning Centre in Feng Shan Primary School. Little did I know what was in store. Back in Primary School, I had always had a hard time during my lessons. While everyone at school seemed to excel at things, I was slowly crawling by in comparison. Not being able to read and write as well as my peers greatly affected my self-confidence in Primary School, I remember clearly how much I struggled to spell the word “Because” during one of my school’s spelling tests and try and try as I might, I unable to do so, causing me a great deal of frustration and disappointment.
Then came the day I went for my lessons at DAS and my teacher at the time taught me a trick to overcome my peril that I will forever remember till this day, she told me “to spell ‘because’ you just need to remember that Big Elephants Can Always Understand Small Elephants”. That alone changed my life, as small a thing as it might seem, it brought back all the confidence I needed. I went back that day and could not hold in my excitement, exclaiming to all my family members how I could spell the word “Because”!
In retrospect, this memory is what taught me that dyslexia isn’t something to be scared of or to be ashamed about. It is this and many other experiences similar to that, which have helped me to embrace the English Language instead of shy away from it. It was what gave me the confidence to pick up a novel for the first time and that too started another change in my life. These all came to fruition during my GCE N-Level results where I was awarded an award for “Distinction in the English Language” as well as “Top in the English Language”, something that till this day I cannot believe. This kept me motivated and ready to take on the next chapter of my life in Polytechnic. Due to my results, I was able to get into the Poly Foundation Program and kick-start my new life in Poly!
I have just recently graduated from Nanyang Polytechnic with a Diploma in Infocom Security and am currently pursuing my dream of serving in the Singapore Police Force, a dream that I had for many years. Being here today where I am now is all thanks to the hard work, patience and support of the teachers in DAS.
Encore to Tobias
Well done Tobias! Continue to achieve what is thought to be the impossible and strive for your aspirations. Your success and achievements proves to students with dyslexia that nothing is unobtainable if one set their hearts and minds to it.
You have come this far, despite the odds and
I am truly happy and proud of you!
Senior Educational Therapist