NPTEL-IIT Madras collaborates with Madras Dyslexia Association to offer free online remediation program in Tamil

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CHENNAI : National Programme on Technology Enhanced Learning (NPTEL), IIT Madras, is collaborating with Madras Dyslexia Association (MDA) to offer a Remediation Program for children with dyslexia studying in Tamil medium. This program is being offered in online mode, completely free of charge through NPTEL.

Early and timely identification followed by need-based intervention ensures that the child copes with the difficulties arising due to dyslexia and becomes a productive adult. With dyslexia being a language-based processing difficulty, it manifests itself as a difficulty in processing not just English but other languages as well.

Hence, MDA has designed and developed ‘Tamil Vazhi Payirchi’ to enable identification and intervention for children with dyslexia studying in Tamil medium primary schools.

‘Tamil Vazhi Payirchi’ was launched on Friday (2nd September 2022) by Prof. V. Kamakoti, Director, IIT Madras, and Mr. D. Chandrasekhar, President, Madras Dyslexia Association (MDA), in the presence of Prof. Mahesh Panchagnula, Dean (Alumni and Corporate Relations), IIT Madras, Prof. Andrew Thangaraj, Co-ordinator, NPTEL-IIT Madras, Prof. Bhaskar Ramamurthi and Prof. R. Nagarajan and other stakeholders.

Speaking on the occasion, Prof. V. Kamakoti, Director, IIT Madras, said, “This initiative is a power answer to the question of IIT Madras’ relevance to the wider society. Not only is the institute providing technical support through NPTEL but also through its alumni (Mr. D. Chandrasekhar) who is spearheading this initiative. This initiative should also be made available in other languages with the help of AI/ML based systems like those developed by ‘AI4Bharat.’ This should be made available in multiple languages.”

Highlighting the impact of ‘Tamil Vazhi Payirchi,’ Mr. D. Chandrasekhar, President, Madras Dyslexia Association (MDA), said, “Statistically, around 10 to 15 per cent of children are impacted by dyslexia. This implies that a large number of children could need screening, assessment and follow-up remedial support in Tamil medium schools. This program will pave way for early identification and intervention in such schools, across Tamil Nadu”

Recognising that intervention at the school level is of utmost importance and that mainstream school teachers play a pivotal role in the entire process, Madras Dyslexia Association has been successfully training teachers on the fundamentals of Dyslexia and basic strategies that can be imparted to the children with dyslexia, within the classrooms.

Remedial teaching is a structured, multi-modal program guided by an individualized education plan. This plan harnesses the strengths of the child to provide strategies to cope with the needs/difficulties. At Madras Dyslexia Association, the remedial teaching is based on the Orton-Gillingham approach and seamlessly integrated with the Multiple Intelligences approach.

MDA has designed and developed ‘Tamil Vazhi Payirchi’ – a complete package to address the remediation needs of such children. It includes a screening tool that can be administered in a Tamil medium primary class, a remedial kit and a training programme that equips the teachers with strategies they can impart to children with dyslexia.

The unique points of ‘Tamil Vazhi Payirchi’ include:

Ø Comprehensive-includes modules on basics on dyslexia, child development, screening, reading, spelling, writing, mathematics, study skills & Multiple Intelligences

Ø Self-paced, online

Ø Modular and split into short segments

Ø Videos for each module

Ø Module-end short quiz to aid effective learning

Ø 7 Case studies amply supported by case analysis and quiz

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