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Rachel Elder-Smith

I began my career as a primary school teacher and was class-based until my own children arrived. Following this I began covering classes in the school I was based in. This let me observe firsthand that there were some children that just ‘didn’t get it’ or found learning more challenging. I then embarked on my dyslexia qualification and became a specialist in her school.

Since 2015 I have worked for the North Tyneside Dyslexia Team assessing pupils with dyslexia and dyscalculia tendencies in all mainstream schools across North Tyneside. This role has allowed me to see a range of needs in the dyslexia continuum and provide help and support for schools, children and families. I have provided training to schools in North Tyneside in dyslexia and dyscalculia and have written many resources and training programmes that help support pupils. In 2023 I achieved my Dyscalculia qualification allowing me to assess and teach pupils with dyscalculia. This is an area that particularly interests me. I Have become the dyscalculia specialist in North Tyneside and advise all things dyscalculia including creating resources, delivering training and making videos to help staff in school deliver a dyscalculic intervention programme.
When I'm not working I am at home caring for her many pets including miniature sheep, dogs, rabbits, chickens, fish and axolotls. One day I hope to sneak in a miniature highland cow… not sure how much ‘sneaking’ is possible with a highland cow!

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