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5 quick ways for dyslexia professionals to connect with the global community this summer!

Published on
June 17, 2024 at 12:00:00 AM PDT June 17, 2024 at 12:00:00 AM PDTth, June 17, 2024 at 12:00:00 AM PDT



We know that there’s an inspiring community of dyslexia professionals all over the world, working tirelessly to find the best ways to support people with neurodivergent needs and learn more about what makes dyslexic brains tick.



And that’s amazing – we’re lucky to live in an age where there’s so much attention to neurodiversity at the moment, and that the world at large is changing to be more accessible and inclusive for everybody.


But we also know that sometimes, especially if you’re looking at a summer of juggling networking, conferencing and building your professional expertise with things like supporting your own learners, holidays, and possibly even switching off for a well-earned hour or two… things get busy fast. Neurodiversity support professionals are some of the hardest-working people we know, and so much of what we do as a sector relies on community and collective action.


So, we’ve put together a five-point checklist to help people working in the dyslexia sector stay on top of things. It includes some quick wins you can implement without draining your professional bandwidth so that you can still make time for yourself this summer.



Make sure your social media engagement extends to communities.


We know the drill with social media – you follow people, people follow you. You all post and like and have a good time. But one thing that a lot of people miss is the platforms’ community elements: are you a member of any community groups on Facebook or LinkedIn?


Although yes, technically, it’s one more thing to look at alongside your news feed; these communities bring together more than just the businesses and professionals that you’re connected with on the platform. They’re hubs and meeting places for dyslexic individuals seeking support, advice, and asking questions – which are incredible resources for anybody working in neurodiversity and can help us ensure that the services we provide cater towards the authentic needs of people with dyslexia.




Pick your events carefully.


Conferences are good fun and amazing opportunities, but nobody can go to every conference or sector event that they need to – if we did, it’d leave no time for actually doing what we do (and don’t even mention the train ticket prices).


That’s why it’s important to pick your events carefully, look for opportunities that bring together your focuses and tick the most boxes, and not feel bad if you miss something for a family or work commitment. It’s easy to burn out when you’re on the road, and it’s even easier when you’re working in a high-stress sector like education.


Take a deep breath and relax: most of the time there are recaps and roundups, and most panellists are more than happy to share materials they presented with you over email if you ask. 




Learn from your armchair (or desk, garden, or plane)!


Although it sadly wasn’t the same story for students, the pandemic did help us realise that professional learning can be done just as well online and in a way that suits you, through webinar or livestream events.


When time is at a premium, your mental bandwidth is low, or you need to become an expert in something overnight, it’s so easy to seek out an expert provider and learn at your own pace from the comfort of your sofa. It’s often easier to take in too – calm, comfortable learning experiences are the ones that most people learn from best.




Make your inbox your to-read list.


We’re lucky to be part of a professional neurodiversity community that has so many publications and ways to stay up to date. But that also means that there’s a lot of scrolling and reading.


But it doesn’t have to be quite such a time-suck when lots of businesses, journals and groups create direct-to-email newsletters, either through LinkedIn or through their own independent mailing lists. These provide a digest-style rundown of everything that’s been going on, and links where you can find out more if you fancy, cutting down the time you spend sifting through everything. Make sure you’re signed up!




Don’t be afraid to get in touch.


Whether it’s a business whose blog has some interesting stats you’ve not come across, new tech that you’re excited about, or somebody posting about their individual dyslexia experience that you think you could offer some advice on – reach out!


We’re better when we’re connected, and the sharing of knowledge and information like this makes our global community truly special and focuses us on the needs that we serve. Even if it’s popping a direct message to somebody you’ve seen do great things on LinkedIn but never had an opportunity to talk to, it might be the start of a new working friendship that leads you to create some powerful change for your dyslexic clients… or even dyslexic folks everywhere!

 






Our incredible dyslexia community empowers the whole sector. That’s why Scanning Pens are so excited to sponsor the British Dyslexia Association International Conference 2024's Networking Event. Dimensions of Dyslexia: Evidence and Practice is set to be an incredible learning opportunity for seasoned experts, academics and those just starting out on their professional dyslexia support journey, and we’re excited to facilitate your chance to build relationships with other like-minded people who are out there every day driving the narrative forwards.


We’re proud to be able to work with an organisation that guides as much policy and practice as the BDA, and to celebrate our two-decade working relationship by contributing to one of their incredible international events.


You can sign up for the evening Networking Event here! And if you’re looking for reading support for all kinds of readers – from those with dyslexia to those learning languages – you can check out what our award-winning reading supports can do over at Scanning Pens