What is Dyslexia?

Dyslexia refers to a neurologically based difference that impacts the brain’s ability to learn basic reading and spelling skills, in spite of good intelligence and appropriate educational opportunities. Dyslexia may often be seen as an unexpected problem because the child has average to above average intelligence, and good overall abilities, yet struggles to learn to read. Students with dyslexia have difficulties perceiving the sounds of language and later mapping these sounds to symbols. It is a language-based disorder that can affect perception, storage, and retrieval of language. It results in struggles with learning the alphabet and sounds of letters, and later with acquiring fluent reading and written expression.

Dyslexia is not seeing or writing numbers and letters backwards; it is a linguistic problem, not a visual one. The effects vary from person to person, and can fall on a spectrum of severity from mild-moderate to severe.  

 

Dyslexia Facts

 

  • Dyslexia affects boys and girls equally.
  • There is a genetic component.
  • The child of a dyslexic parent has a 50/50 chance of inheriting dyslexic characteristics.
  • It affects more children than all other childhood disorders (including autism, ADHD, etc.) Individuals no not grow out it; dyslexia cannot be cured.
  • Reading problems do not go away with maturity.
  • Waiting on support only results in months and years of academic struggles and resulting emotional fallout.
  • Early intervention is the key. We can now identify children at risk for dyslexia as early as ages 4-5.

 

Links

 

What is dyslexia?
http://dyslexiaida.org/dyslexia-basics/

Characteristics of dyslexia
http://dyslexia.yale.edu/clues1.html

The Orton Gillingham Approach
http://www.ortonacademy.org/approach.php

International Dyslexia Association
http://dyslexiaida.org/

The Yale Center for Dyslexia and Creativity
http://dyslexia.yale.edu/