All the latest news from Helen Arkell Dyslexia Charity.

Big Walk for Dyslexia 2024

We’d love you to come and join us for our Big Walk for Dyslexia on the afternoon of Sunday 12 May. As last year, we will be walking in beautiful Farnham Park – just along from the Helen Arkell Dyslexia Charity in West Street in the centre of Georgian Farnham. And once again, we’re absolutely thrilled to be part of the Farnham Walking Festival.

Teddy Arkell was all set to eat every crumb of cake last year and this year we are determined not to let him, so he will be on his best behaviour and there should be plenty of tea and cake for you all after the walk, back at the Centre.

Join in wherever you are!

If you can’t attend on the day, why not do a ‘virtual’ walk for us (and virtual cake munching) and tag us as you share your photos on social media?

It’s a fun family day out, with dogs very welcome, but of course, the most important bit is that it is all to raise money to help the charity support adults and children with dyslexia and to raise awareness of dyslexia and the work we do here at Helen Arkell so we would love your support.

You can find out more and register here. See you there!

Tesco Stronger Starts!

We’re in the customer vote for a Tesco Stronger Starts!

This is a scheme which gives community projects like us grants of up to £1,500. This money could make a huge difference by helping us to support children or adults with dyslexia who might otherwise be unable to access this life-changing help.

Tesco customers can vote in the following stores during April, May and June to decide how much funding we get, so please support us next time you shop at Tesco!


Alton Express, Anstey Lane, GU34 2NF

Four Marks Express, GU34 5HG

Bordon Tesco, GU35 0AX


Banbury Extra, OX16 1LX

Banbury Express, Middle Road, OX16 3QT

Banbury Express, High Street, OX16 5EG

Find out more about Tesco Stronger Starts

New Spotlight: Assistive Technology: Practical Demonstrations

In January we ran a great Spotlight entitled Empowering Learning: The How of Assistive Technology. This Spotlight gave an overview of Assistive Technology and how it can be used to enhance learning outcomes for neurodiverse students.

People who attended this Spotlight let us know that they are also keen to see the Assistive Technology in action so, we have invited Myles Pilling and Julia Clouter back to do just this!

The Spotlight Assistive Technology: Practical Demonstrations will be held live online on Tuesday 23 April at 6 pm with a recording available afterwards. The live webinar will include a Q & A session. Tickets are £10.

You can find out more and book here

See you there!

By |2024-05-09T13:48:44+01:00March 13th, 2024|Course news, Latest news, Research news|0 Comments

New Spotlight on Employment Rights

New Spotlight webinar on Tuesday 12 March at 6pm.

Join Katie Harris from specialist law firm Boyes Turner to discuss the value of employing people with dyslexia and the challenges and benefits of having dyslexia in the workplace, how employment law protects people with dyslexia, and the practical steps employers can and should be taking to better support people with dyslexia and comply with their legal obligations towards them.

The webinar will include an opportunity to ask questions.

If you can’t join live, recordings will be sent out.

Book here.

By |2024-05-09T13:50:54+01:00March 5th, 2024|Course news, Latest news|0 Comments

Come and see us at the Dyslexia Show 2024!

NEC, Birmingham

Friday 15 March to Saturday 16 March

Once again, we are delighted that the Helen Arkell team will be there at this national exhibition dedicated entirely to dyslexia.

The Dyslexia Show is open to all and focuses on awareness and understanding of dyslexia in education, parenting and the workplace.

The line-up

CEO Andy Cook will be a panellist in the Keynote Theatre at 10:15 on Friday alongside friends and colleagues from Patoss, British Dyslexia Association and Nasen. Book here.

Claire Harvey, Head of Education here at Helen Arkell, will be speaking at 11 on Friday, giving a talk entitled: Gaining reading accuracy and fluency: Why is it so tricky and what can we do to help? Book here.

Rachael McMullen, our Head of Dyslexia Support, and Thea Andrews, our Shop Assistant and Administrator, will be on our stand – Stand C302 – and looking forward to meeting people.

Do pop and see us if you are coming along!

For more details and to book your place, see the Dyslexia Show website.

By |2024-04-24T09:29:52+01:00March 4th, 2024|Homepage featured, Latest news|0 Comments

Neurodiversity workshops with expert Fintan O’Regan

Once again, we are are pleased to offer workshops with neurodiversity expert Fintan O’Regan. These will be useful to parents and teachers who have children with:

  • Autistic Spectrum Condition (ASC)
  • Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder (ADHD)
  • Oppositional Defiant Disorder (ODD)
  • Pathological Demand Avoidance (PDA)
  • Learning, behaviour and socialisation difference


  • Friday 10 November 2024, 1 to 4 pm – Fin O’Regan’s ASC and ADHD Workshop We are able to subsidise places on this course for lower-income families.
  • Friday 26 April 2024, 1 to 4 pm – ODD and PDA Workshop for Educators
  • Friday 3 May 2024, 1 to 4 pm – ODD and PDA Workshop for Parents We are able to subsidise places on this course for lower-income families.

All the courses will be held at The Museum of Farnham, 38 West Street, Farnham – just a few doors down from our Centre.

About Fintan O’Regan

Fintan was the Head Teacher of the Centre Academy from 1996 -2002, which was the first specialist school in the UK for students between the ages of 7-19 specialising in issues related to ADHD, ASC, ODD and PDA.

He is an associate lecturer for Leicester University, Michigan University, the National Association of Special Needs, the Institute of Education, the Helen Arkell Dyslexia Charity and is a member of the council of CReSTeD and the Special Educational Needs Consortium.

He has written a number of books and published articles and works as a trainer and consultant both nationally and internationally with regard to supporting schools, children and families with SEND and behaviour issues.

Book today!

By |2024-05-09T13:52:51+01:00March 3rd, 2024|Course news, Latest news|0 Comments

New April dates! Supporting Learners with Dyslexia/SpLDs

Supporting Learners with Dyslexia/Specific Learning Difficulties is a very practical online course for Teaching Assistants or anyone supporting learners. You will be shown lots of useful, tried and tested strategies to enable you to support learners effectively. You will also have the opportunity to make attractive, practical resources that you will be able to use with your learners. The course starts on Friday 19 April and comprises six three-hour sessions:

  • Overview of Dyslexia and SpLDs
  • Introduction to Phonological Awareness and Phonics
  • Learning Preferences and Multi-Sensory Teaching
  • Reading Accuracy and Comprehension
  • Spelling and Writing
  • Numeracy

Each session can be booked individually and recordings of sessions will be available if you cannot attend.

Book here

By |2024-04-24T09:29:55+01:00March 2nd, 2024|Course news, Latest news|0 Comments

Book our annual Golf Day now!

Join us at Worplesdon Golf Club for our annual golf day – a morning of golf followed by a delicious buffet lunch and raffle.

This is a wonderful opportunity to play this stunning course while raising money for those in need of dyslexia support. Worplesdon is one of the classic Surrey heathland courses, laid out in 1908 by J F Abercromby. Why not get a team together for a fun day out?

Please register here.

We look forward to seeing you at Worplesdon Golf Club on May 9th!

Dyscalculia Awareness Day 2024

With Dyscalculia Awareness Day just around the corner, we explain what dyscalculia and we look at helpful tips and tricks to support people who struggle with maths…

What is dyscalculia?

The SpLD Assessment Standards Committee (SASC) defines dyscalculia as:

‘Dyscalculia is a specific and persistent difficulty in understanding numbers which can lead to a diverse range of difficulties with mathematics. It will be unexpected in relation to age, level of education and experience and occurs across all ages and abilities. Mathematics difficulties are best thought of as a continuum, not a distinct category, and they have many causal factors. Dyscalculia falls at one end of the spectrum and will be distinguishable from other maths issues due to the severity of difficulties with number sense, including subitising [perceiving a number of items in a group without counting them], symbolic and non-symbolic magnitude comparison, and ordering. It can occur singly but often co occurs with other specific learning difficulties, mathematics anxiety and medical conditions.’

Around one person in 20 has dyscalculia.

The Dyscalculia Network and Jane Emerson and Patricia Babtie in their book ‘Understanding Dyscalculia and Numeracy Difficulties’ states that indicators include:

  • Inability to subitize (recognise up to 4 or 5 counters without counting)
  • Counting errors
  • Miscounting objects
  • Lack of one-one correspondence
  • Sequencing errors
  • Inability to count backwards
  • Not understanding the count 70, 80, 90, 20, 21 / 48, 49, 51, 52
  • Calculation difficulties
  • Persistent counting in 1s
  • Cannot remember number facts
  • Uses unstructured dots or makes tally marks to do calculations
  • Difficulty with mental arithmetic
  • Cannot remember times tables facts
  • Misunderstanding of maths language
  • Errors writing numbers
  • Reversing digits
  • Not understanding zero as a place holder
  • Inaccurate estimations
  • Inability to recognise if an answer is reasonable
  • Weak reasoning e.g.. inability to see number relationships
  • Weak at making connections e.g. 4 + 4 = 8 therefore 14 + 4 = 18
  • Problems with money and time
  • Lack of place value understanding
  • Errors when completing formal calculations

Tips for maths difficulties:

    1. Use imagery: Link mathematical facts and equations to images to help build memory. For example, an octagon has eight sides like how an octopus has eight arms.
    2. Use mind mapping: For example, create a mind map with the word ‘circumference’ in the middle. You could draw initial arms on this mind map to help the person, the arms could be labelled ‘write an equation’, ‘draw it’, ‘define it’, ‘write a question involving it’ – this encourages the person to interact with the information in different ways whilst acting as a revision tool. For the ‘write a question involving it’ arm, this is a good chance to talk through language by discussing how the person could have made the question clearer and correct mathematical terminology to use, whilst of course celebrating anything they do well! Then, you as the person teaching could use the question that they wrote to demonstrate how to approach problems, which links to the next tip …
    3. Think aloud: When demonstrating how to answer a question, speak aloud every step of the process: reading, annotating the question, making notes from the question, trialling an approach, trying a different approach, reaching a final answer and finally checking. Watching somebody do the whole process really makes it clear to the person you are helping.
    4. Build confidence: When assessing the person, don’t only ask questions that push the person to the limits of their capability but also ones that you know that they can answer – no matter how easy! The person can then see that they have remembered some knowledge that they didn’t know before!

Dyscalculia and maths resources and books

We have many resources and books in our shop that can help teach maths and numeracy. These include:
dyscalculia products in the shop

Fraction segments

Tabletop number lines

Awesome Games and Activities for Kids with Numeracy Difficulties

GCSE Maths for Neurodivergent Learners

All About Dyscalculia 


Want to understand more? We were joined by Dyscalculia Network’s Rob Jennings for a Spotlight webinar on the subject. We offer dyscalculia top-up assessments, and we offer specialist maths tuition and maths Personalised Learning in the Easter and Summer holidays to children.

By |2024-04-24T09:29:58+01:00March 1st, 2024|Homepage featured, Latest news, Team blog|0 Comments


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