Being Dyslexic And Blogging.

Don’t let DYSLEXIA stop you from achieving your goals!

This is a topic that I have been thinking of covering for a few weeks now and I feel like today is the day. This is going to be very personal and informative as I want to inspire many of you to go out there and tackle your dreams and goals.

How did this affect me growing up?

I have never been a fan of reading, especially those massive books with hundreds of pages and complex storylines. I would normally struggle with reading, not just with the words, but keeping the information in and processing what it meant and what was being said. This was a big struggle for me growing up, yet I was not aware of this until I was diagnosed. I just thought I was ‘bad’ at reading. It all makes sense now!

At primary and secondary school, I always preferred the more artistic/creative subjects, such as pe, art, music, and drama. I found it easier to connect in those subjects because I did not have anything to stop me from developing further and I was able to achieve higher in those subjects. I did not have any assessments done during school, as it was not picked up within my lessons.

It wasn’t until I was halfway through my second year of university where I decided to speak to student services about how I could about getting a test done. I had been struggling a little with the complex readings, as well as receiving feedback on my assignments which suggests signs of being muddled and a lack of understanding. Dyslexia does run in my family, which is why after I spoke about this, it was agreed that perhaps I should get tested.

Of course, finding out about this officially at 21 is quite daunting and causes a lot of self-doubts. I never want this to stop me from believing about myself. I have worked so hard to get to where I am, and I have probably had to work a lot harder than others, but I am determined to complete university with a 2:1 in Education Studies and Drama, as well as continue sharing posts on my blog which I love so much!

What is Dyslexia?

‘Dyslexia is a common learning difficulty that can cause problems with reading, writing, and spelling. It is estimated that up to 1 in every 10 people, in the UK, have some degree of Dyslexia. Dyslexia is a lifelong problem that can present challenges on a daily basis, but support is available to improve reading and writing skills to help those who really need it at school and work’ (https://www.nhs.uk/conditions/Dyslexia/). Dyslexia affects individuals in different ways. Even though there is no exact cause, it does tend to run in families.

Is there a stigma with Dyslexia? 

Personally, I think that there is still some stigma associated with having dyslexia. At university, pupils who are known to be dyslexic are given a range of equipment, funding, software’s, personal tutors, extra time in exams etc, which is funded by the university. Although I haven’t received any of the software’s and tutors yet, as I am still in the process, I think that pupils with dyslexia are able to try different things to suit their needs which results in them achieving higher because of different learning methods. Pupils should be able to have access to specific software’s to help them achieve higher, as they are created for a reason.

As it’s only been a few weeks after finding my results, I think that it is important to inform your place of work, including interviews for new ones. It is good to be honest with them. Even though being dyslexic is common and not that bad, it is still a good idea for them to know, especially to support you should you need it.

I am not sure how I feel about it towards blogging. I feel like some of my readers already know about it, due to my writing style and punctuation. To be completely honest, I just thought bloggers assumed I wasn’t very good at writing.

I think it is very important to be open about being dyslexic as it’s important to inspire those to achieve their goals and aspirations. I am an aspiring secondary school drama teacher, as well as a blogger. There are highly dependent on reading, writing, and spelling and I am determined to achieve these by working extra hard to overcome my weaknesses.

Here are some software’s that I recommend using for blogging and studying? 

Some of these software’s are free, free to trial and have a subscription fee. If you have been diagnosed for dyslexia and you like the idea of these, you could try and get funded for these great software’s. All of these allows you to either download for free or a 30-day trial. It would be beneficial for you to try some of these out and find which ones would help you personally.

  • OneNote – perfect for organizing notes and creating different notebooks for every project.
  • Grammarly – free spelling and grammar word check for every app/website on PC.
  • MindView 7.0 – Mind mapping software that turns all into word documents to assist with structuring essays and organizing notes.
  • Text Help Read&Write – Improves reading and writing, it is an alternative of Microsoft Word which is designed to help those with learning difficulties and dyslexia.
  • Open Dyslexic – Fonts designed to help those with dyslexia to read as it lines each sentence to help you follow what you’re reading.
  • Bee LineReader – Improves reading with colored tools and alternatives to improve following complex texts.
  • Academic Phrasebank – perfect for those who are academic writers to view examples of work to understand how to structure and phrase your sentences.

This post is aimed to inspire those who may also struggle with reading, writing or spelling or anything else. I think that you should be able to achieve anything that you want to. I am determined to make my dreams come true and being dyslexic will not stop me.

If you would like to have a chat, please do not hesitate to get in touch.

The Go-To Smart/Casual Outfit.

Oh hey! So, I recently have been doing a lot of presentational assignments for my university degree and thought what a great idea to share with you my go-to smart/casual outfit. I really like wearing this little combination as it looks very sophisticated, as well as casual at the same time. It is perfect for presentations as well as interviews because it looks smart but not over the top. It is very subtle and perfectly designed for anyone studying degrees or in the similar age group to me.

This outfit consists of very few basic items which can most likely be found in any retail store or at the bottom of your wardrobe. This whole outfit is from New Look!!! When it comes to shopping, I am a bit of a New Look nerd. A majority of everything I own is a New Look number. I just love their style as its right up my street and I find that their sizes work wonders on me.

I am very fond of this little outfit. I am looking forward to more presentational talks or assignments as I am able to put this together easily without stressing. I absolutely love wearing casual blazers as they are stylish and age appropriate. Although, an alternative to the outfit is perhaps some smart tailored trousers with either flat shoes or small boots. This can be re-arranged a number of ways. You should definitely try this out and let me know how you got on. I am intrigued what you would wear, especially if you don’t want to go over the top or too far out of your comfort zone. I definitely need to be more adventurous when picking out outfits for uni and interviews as I tend to wear the same clothes.

SHOP THE LOOK:

smart outfit

us-badge

Chelsea Ankle Boots

Skinny Jeans

Stretched Blazer

Things I Wish I Knew About University.

Hello, welcome back to my blog. I have decided to create a post which I think will be beneficial for those of you who are currently studying in university or are in the process of starting. Here are a few tips and advice which I wish I was told at the start of the year; when I started university. I am currently half way through semester 2 of my first year at university studying Education Studies and Drama, in Hampshire.

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1. YOUR FIRST YEAR 
Ok, here goes… the truth about your first year! You will hear many people say ‘it’s only your first year, it doesn’t matter, you only need to pass as you’re only graded pass or fail at the end’ – This isn’t actually true! Every university is different. You do actually get a final grade at the end equivalent to either: 3rd, 2.2, 2.1 or a 1st. These are assessed by a % between 40-80 which will determine your grade. Your first year is important as you do need to pass to ensure a place onto your 2nd year. However, in regards to actually working hard and putting as much effort it… YOU DEFINITELY SHOULD!!! I have been advised to take on every assignment giving it 100% and full commitment as if in the future I am ill or for any reason unable to submit a bit of work or if anything severe happens, the examiner can actually refer back to your 1st year.

Personally, I always try my best to give every assignment my full commitment, putting in as much as I can and developing my skills further each time. This is because I am interested in my development and how I can improve each time. I like to know where I am at, in terms of all aspects of presenting, essay writing and my grades. I believe you should take on your first year seriously because it is a waste… especially if it all goes wrong, for misunderstanding the concepts of it. It is a lot of money and opportunity wasted.

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2. JOINING SOCIETIES
In my opinion, I wished I joined a range of societies at the start of the year, that would have helped me to decide which ones I could stick with throughout whilst studying. During freshers week, we had a day to explore all of the available societies available to us. There are about 25 different societies which were available to me. The ones that grabbed my attention were:

  • Rounders
  • Cheerleading
  • Hockey
  • Glee
  • Lets Act
  • Feminism (FemStop)
  • ESports
  • Dance
I wish I gave all of these a go, even just a try out as I wouldn’t have known if I liked them. However, as I was nervous being at university anyway (having to move to a new town, new education and meeting new people), I thought it would be easier to follow the crowd to specific societies. To begin with, I went to rounders which was great fun. It is a good way to socialise with a range of age groups of students who are all studying at the same uni. For some reason, I decided to stop going, I think it was because I had a lot of work due and I wanted to focus predominantly on that. Shortly after quitting rounders, I went onto glee. Glee is soooo much fun!!!! It is a really nice, friendly society who welcome a diverse proportion of people from any courses, regardless if you can sing or not. I really enjoyed singing out loud and this was a great opportunity for me to do so. I really enjoy being a part of Glee and recently I have joined rounders again. When I start my second year, I will definitely experience and try out other societies because it is a really good feeling to be a part of something that you are interested in.
I think that you should dive straight in and sign yourself up for as many societies as you can because you can always re-join or quit. You can come and go at any moment. I think you should do something because you want to not because the rest of your flatmates are. When I start my second year, I am 100% going to join a few more societies and find which ones suit me best.

3. THE STUDENT LIFE: GOING OUT/ALCOHOL (BOP) 
As most of you are probably aware that a lot of people refer to students as living ‘the student life’ or will ask you ‘how’s the nightlife?’. As it goes, it is true. Many if not a majority will go out every week, probably every other night. There is always something on either an event, society meetings or just to go out and have a good time. There are places on campus, the local pub or the bars and nightclub in town. As it stands, I have gone out about 4 times. This is to our on-campus nightclub on a Wednesday evening 8pm-1am, which is our society/music throwback night. We call this BOP!!!!! It is so cheap to get in, as little as £2 and you would normally have a theme with your society that you all stick to for that night out at BOP. It is a lot of great fun and definitely one of the many ways to make new friends.

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4. HOUSEHOLD TASKS: COOKING, WASHING & CLEANING 
Cooking: If I am being honest, at the start of the year I thought I was actually going to cook proper meals. I did a very large food shop with fresh meats and I honestly said to myself I will make good meals. In reality, I live off salads, bread, cereal, potatoes and pasta!!!! You might not be like me, but if you are you will probably live off the same kind of food every week. If you can and you’re motivated, you should definitely try and make your favourite kinds of dinner that you would eat at home. It will make you a happier person and you will maintain a healthy diet. From looking at my social media, you will probably see that I eat a lot of jacket potatoes and salads or takeaways!!!! I have decided that next year I will make proper dinners and meals and look after myself well.

Another thing that is important to consider, is where you will do your shopping. It is always good to go to the supermarket which has the best deals as your money will soon vanish. I always have a budget which I try to stick to each week. Sometimes it doesn’t last but others it does. If you can I would recommend doing an online shopping order with either your friends or flatmates. This is because you can get the deals online and also you will not have to carry it from town. This is a massive advantage for me as I absolutely love drinking milk… I get through about 6 pints a week if not more!!! Carrying this from Winchester town to the uni can be very PAINFUL!!!!!!
Washing: The one thing I forgot to consider when coming to university and living in halls. Unfortunately, I would have to get the train home which would be a complete disaster if I was to take my washing home. You will hear a lot of friends say that they’re going home or getting picked up so they will take their washing with them. For me… this was not the case!!! I have to use the washing facilities on campus. Don’t get me wrong they aren’t that bad at all. There are two places on campus which both have 6 washers and 6 dryers. In comparison to the number of students, that’s really not a lot. However, my advice for laundry isn’t very good… but I will tell you what I do! I would leave all my washing until my wash basket is full or until I am at the point where I literally have no more clothes left. This is because the amount of time needed to do washing is a lot and it is better to do two full loads in one go. The washers at uni are quite big and if you do one for whites and one for colours, it is advised to wait until both are at a good size. I would almost definitely always do my washing on a Sunday morning between 8am-10am. It is always quiet at that time because people are either still at home, in bed or recovering from the night before. You most likely will not have to wait for a washer. When I first started I had a couple of times where I would wait to use a washer in line for about an hour… IT’S CRAZY!!! The best thing to do is to take with you either readings, work, books or your laptop to the laundry room and to be productive doing coursework as you will find yourself waiting a very long time. You can leave your washing, but I never do. An average wash is about 35 minutes and the dryer is about 80 minutes, so I always bring food and work and I have a very productive couple hours whilst doing washing!

5. LIVING ON A BUDGET 
Managing your money whilst at university is crucial! If you aren’t working or getting money from parents then you should consider budgeting your money on a weekly basis. I have been managing my own money since the age of 16. It is important that you work out your finances in advance so you are aware of how much money you can spend each week. If you spend less one week, then you can budget a bit more the week after… I find it very useful to budget myself and stay on track when going out as I find myself just tapping my card at many places and not caring. Money does not last as long as you think and the value of it is not very much! When you have to start paying your own bills, shopping, personal items and going out with friends, it soon vanishes very quickly. As a first-year student, I personally wish I saved up a little bit more money before coming to university. It is nice having independence and freedom, but sometimes knowing your financial problems can be a big problem if you don’t want to go into an overdraft.

 

Why I Chose The University Of Winchester?

Hello everyone! Today, I will be talking about a highly requested topic that has been mentioned by a few of you on Twitter. This blog post will be an informative one explaining; What I do at University? and Why I chose Winchester? I will be demonstrating this through a lot of photographs as I thought it would be a good idea for you get a general understanding of what I am talking about. I am very excited to be writing this post as I absolutely love Winchester. It’s mad to think that it actually feels like ‘home’ here now. It is so strange to think that I can’t imagine myself living back in my original hometown. It is a beautiful little city and I am thankful that I encouraged myself to make this transfer because I am genuinely so happy here.

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This is a map of the whole campus including the post room and graphics centre in the bottom left, as well as West Downs (Business School) which is a shown at the top of the map.

From the moment I viewed Winchester University in 2015 at the open day, I knew that this would be the perfect location for me to study. I felt something special with Winchester and it touched my heart which the other Universities didn’t have (even the ones back at home). I decided to take a gap year after college, but I knew this was the University for me. I thought it was a beautiful, quiet and historical city which had an excellent University and everything close to each other which is very convenient for a student. I knew straight away from my instincts that this was the one I would attend for 3 years of my BA Honours course.

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This is the main building of the University with the church for students who wish to attend and to the left is a 4th-floor building (St. Alphage) which holds a majority of my Education Studies lectures due to the large classes and rooms available.

Other than those reasons, I chose this University because it had great facilities and accommodation, as well as offering the perfect degree course for myself which is a BA Honours in Education Studies and Drama. I would love to pursue my career as a Secondary school Drama teacher. I absolutely love doing a combined course because you get to learn about two different subjects and potentially in the 3rd year having the choice of combining them together. It also means that I get to communicate with people from two separate subjects which are amazing because I have made so many great friends already. I am almost done with my 1st year at University and I hope to continue until my 3rd is done and then to complete a masters degree.

About The University Of Winchester 

The University of Winchester is a public research university which is based in the city of Winchester, Hampshire in England. The University has been shortlisted for the University of the year in the 2017 Times Higher Education Awards. The University facilitates a range of courses from Arts, Business, Law, Sport, Education, Health and Social Care, Humanities and Social Sciences which are all available at different degree levels (Wikipedia, 2018). The whole University is on a hill which is why it looks a lot smaller than what it actually is. I really like the idea that Winchester is very hilly because it keeps you fit by walking up and down hills, as well as creating beautiful views in the distance which can be so lovely.

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Library – The Library at the University Of Winchester is exceptional! It is available to use 24 hours a day and 7 times a week which is very handy if you have some late assignments to complete. It has 3 floors which are easy to navigate with a range of resources such as; books, audios, journals, articles, newspapers, dvd’s, laptops. The facilities are great. There are a lot of study rooms available and pc’s for all students to use. It honestly is a well-designed library which makes your study time enjoyable. There is also a sectioned room which is designed for students who study Education Studies and Primary Education that has resources available for different year groups as well a private study area.

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The entrance of the library which can be accessed through 3 doors.
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These are my favourite study areas which are really nice in the evening to use because they have their own personal space which makes my study time more efficient.
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This is the private study area predominantly for students who study Primary or Education Studies. This includes books, games and resources for all year groups in both Primary and Secondary education.

Shop – This is quite self-explanatory which is an adequate size for an on-campus shop. It sells the basics which are very useful if you run out of something and you need it quick. It is a little bit more expansive in comparison to the supermarket, but not a drastic difference. It is great because the workers are students which makes it that little bit more special. There are plenty of jobs available on campus if you would like to earn a little bit of money whilst studying.

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Nightclub – Fortunately, the University of Winchester facilitates a space for events which can hold shows/performances, movie nights or as a replacement for a nightclub. They host a range of nights with different themes and music so that it applies to all students. This is the place where BOP is held which is a weekly night out with your society by which you dress up in accordance to your societies theme. It can be a lot of fun and is a cheap night out as well as a good way to meet new people and make friends. There are 2 bars and 2 spaces for people to dance as well as a stage which is great fun to dance on. You can also chill on the sofas which are provided. It tends to start at 8pm and finish at 1am. I think these times as even if you have a 9am, you are still able to go out with your friends. The bar is run by students who attend the university which enhances the overall experience.

Fast Food – There are quite a few places on campus that you can get breakfast, lunch and dinner from such as the Terrace Bar (hot dinner food mainly like burgers and chips), the Food Hall (mainly for catered students but does a variety of food) and Cyber Italia (pizza, toasties and paninis). There are also coffee machines and vending machines located all around the university too.

Terrace Bar

Food Hall

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Cyber Italia 

Accommodation – There are two types of accommodation on campus which are Queens and Burma. Both are directly on campus which is located towards the back of the university. It is approximately a 2-minute walk to get to the main building on campus. I am currently living on campus in Queens Road Student Village and I love it so much. It definitely gives that uni experience that people say all students have to do. It is nice to be living with students living as independent adults. I live with 7 other girls as an 8 man flat. Both accommodations have en-suite bathrooms in the bedrooms and you get your own room. You share a kitchen/dining room. I have attached an image of what the bedrooms look like in Queens Road. Unfortunately, I can not get a picture of Burma ones as I do not have access to those buildings. Your key card only works for your block, flat door and bedroom door. However, the inside of Burma looks very similar to Queens, so you’ll be able to get somewhat of a vision of what it looks like. There are 5 blocks for Burma (A, B, C, D, E) and 7 blocks for Queens(1-7). I am living in block 2. Below Burma block C there is the uni gym which is a yearly membership for students who wish to work-out. This is such a great facility to have on campus as not many universities have one. It also encourages students to keep fit and stay healthy.

Queens Road Student Village

Burma Road Student Village

There are so many reasons as to why I love living and studying in Winchester and I hope I have got that message across to you today. I think this has always been the university destined for me. I can not fault this at all which is an amazing result. The university is perfect and I definitely recommend this to anyone who is stuck or indecisive about their choices. I do not regret the choices I have made. I believe this will change my life forever for the better. Thank you all so much for reading. If you would like me to do any other posts regarding my chosen university or Winchester in general, please let me know by commenting or on my social medias’. I hope you have a good weekend and a great week ahead of you.