Hollywood stars Keira Knightly, OBE and Orlando Bloom are among the big names starring in a series of awareness training films designed to help teachers, educators and parents understand dyslexia and gain essential knowledge on how to recognise and support it, therefore creating a dyslexia inclusive classroom.

The five short movies, produced by global charity Made By Dyslexia, focus on the different way those with dyslexia think, the issues they face in a traditional classroom environment, and how dyslexic thinking and skills help companies meet the challenges of the 21st century workplace.

Shot as a series of ‘talking head’ videos, the Dyslexia Awareness training covers five areas:

Module One: An introduction to dyslexia

Modules Two and Three: The strength of dyslexic thinking and challenges that children encounter in education

Module Four: Advice on how teachers can create an inclusive classroom for all children

Module Five: How teachers and parents can identify dyslexia early – and how this can transform educational outcomes

Experts from two of the world’s leading schools renowned for their support to dyslexic students – Millfield in Glastonbury, Somerset, UK and The Schenck School, Atlanta, Georgia, USA – are featured in the films and helped shape content of the training.

Meanwhile, Microsoft has used the films to create a free online training resource about dyslexia, which will be hosted on its popular Microsoft Educator Community site available to teachers and parents globally and announced at BETT this week.

Made By Dyslexia founder and chief executive Kate Griggs explained:

“Dyslexics have a range of natural strengths that make them ‘hard-wired’ for the in demand skills of the future, as was outlined in the EY Value of Dyslexia report. But our Parent Teacher research found 91% say their schools need a better understanding of dyslexic strengths”.

”These films aim to help teachers and parents understand dyslexic strengths and highlight the importance of identifying and support children with dyslexia.”

In the films, familiar faces such as Keira Knightly OBE, Orlando Bloom, Chris Robshaw and Jamie Oliver talk about their experience with dyslexia throughout their lives. Meanwhile entrepreneur Sir Richard Branson and UK space scientist Maggie Aderin-Pocock MBE explain how dyslexia affected them at school and shaped their careers.

Taking the topic to stage at this year’s Bett Show, on Friday 25 January from 16.30 to 17.00 will be Maggie Aderin-Pocock and Kate Griggs, explaining how technology will play a vital role in streamlining support and empowering educators to enable dyslexic students to reach their potential.

The awareness training resources follow hot on the heels of the first Global Dyslexia Summit (October 15 2018) and launch of the EY Made By Dyslexia report. The event and research examined how Dyslexic Thinking Skills matched the core work-related skills identified in World Economic Forum’s for 2020.

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Later in the year five additional modules will be released in addition to a series of UK and USA ‘road-show’ events to showcase the training and spread awareness even further.

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