By Small Talk Speech Pathology

Monday, 15 April 2013

What is dyslexia?

The first step in getting help with dyslexia is to identify it.
When can dyslexia be identified?
Dyslexia will normally become apparent during the early years of schooling, when a child shows an unexplained difficulty in reading despite having all the skills, such as intelligence and verbal ability, which are necessary to read. Even though dyslexia can become apparent in the early years many children are not identified and an evaluation may not be done until adulthood.
How does an unidentified child cope with dyslexia at school?
Many unidentified children develop coping strategies both positive and negative, which can disguise dyslexia. Most children with dyslexia have to work much harder than their peers to remember and apply classroom information. Some children with dyslexia pretend to be less intelligent than they actually are,this is a negative coping strategy.
Research on dyslexia Identification:
The earlier a child with dyslexia is identified the sooner that child can be directed to effective instruction for their specific need. A child identified earlier with correct treatment can be brought up to grade level without the extra burden of the secondary effects setting in, which can include;low self esteem,frustration, loss of motivation for learning,social and emotional issues including attentional difficulties.
What you can do:
Learn about the common characteristics of dyslexia, trust your gut feelings and do something about it.Effective screening for dyslexia will tell you a lot about the type of teaching your child requires, it is not just a label. Dyslexia is an informative description which allows educational treatment to be tailored to the unique differences that an individual with dyslexia has.If you feel that your child is displaying symptoms of dyslexia, do not listen if someone says, "They will grow out of it" or "All children progress at their own rate". No one grows out of dyslexia and time is valuable when it comes to dyslexia and a child's postive self esteem. See "Could it be dyslexia" for common characteristics.
Schools have a responsibility- let's work together
The ADA offers its members information on the best practices for the identification of dyslexia/reading difficulties. The ADA work within a system which encourages a partnership between ADA services and the school. Please do not spend loads of dollars on any external report/s which offer no evidence based educational treatment.Remember there are no quick fixes for literacy difficulties and the earlier a child is identified the better! Contact ADA, so that we can work with you and your child's school first.
Courtesy of the Dyslexia association

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