MEANING OF DYSLEXIA:
Dyslexia is a specific learning disorder which is associated with trouble in reading ( letters and numbers),comprehension, problem with spellings, pronounciations and even lateness in speech for some children. Dyslexia could also be said to be a linguistic based disorder.
We know that reading is the ability of the brain to recognize symbols(numbers and letters)and be able to make meaning out of them. However this area of brain in charge of recognition is deficit in a Dyslexic,that is why they struggle in cognitive skills.
ARE DYSLEXIC CHILDREN ALWAYS UNINTELLIGENT AS PEOPLE THINK?
Children with dyslexia are not always what people think they are, like unintelligent, dull, stupid, hopeless etc. Research has it that dyslexic children can be as intelligent, brilliant,gifted like any other child or even better if recognized and supported early.
IS DYSLEXIA ASSOCIATED WITH CHILDREN ALONE ?
Some persons have this wrong notion that dyslexia is a child related disorder. Dyslexia can be associated with any age bracket, whether adult or child. The only issue is that if it is not recognized early and managed before adulthood it becomes severe and might mar the child’s future.
SYMPTOMS OF DYSLEXIA:
The signs and symptoms of dyslexia is at varying degrees with individuals ,pending on age and educational background. We are going to look at the following stages:
The symptoms of a child with dyslexia at this stage are
(i) problem in sounding two letter words
(ii) inaudibility when asked to read aloud
(iii)Difficulty in spelling two or three letter words
(iv) has problem learning simple new words
(v)writing letters in the opposite direction.(like in the mirror form.)
(vi)Difficulty in rote learning
(iv) Lateness in speech generally
(2) MIDDLE SCHOOL OR GRADE SCHOOL:
(i) difficulty in reading to self and aloud
(ii)Much spelling errors in written work
(iii)difficulty in spellings generally.
(iv)Looks bright with high IQ but cant read as expected.
(v)Problem with pronounciation of words.
(vi)Finds it difficult to spell a word in the head.
(vii)In some severe cases, social interactions with peers is greatly affected.
(viii)reads and rereads with little comprehension.
(ix)Thrives in creative subjects like art,dancing,experiments, (hands on subjects).
(x)complains of headache or stomachache when asked to read.
(xi)In some severe cases,complaint of movement of letters on the board.
(xii)Inability to learn a second language.
(xiii)Lateness in reading and comprehension generally.
(3) HIGH SCHOOL :
(i)difficulty in spellings and lots of spelling errors when writing
(ii)Problem in memorizing .
(iii)Slow reading and lame comprehension of what has been
(iv)Inability to narrate a story coherently
(v)Problem in summarizing a passage or story.
(vi)Problem in taking down ideas.
(vii)inability to spell words in the head.
(viii)In severe cases,social interactions with peers is greatly affected
(ix)They always try to shy away from reading aloud.
(x)They look bright with high IQ. but barely can read fluently
(xi)Great difficulty in learning a second language
(xii)They thrive more in creative subjects,like arts,dancing,experiments(hands on subjects).
SOME TYPES OF DYSLEXIA FOR SPECIAL EDUCATION SERVICES:
There are different types of dyslexias,but we are going to look at few for special education services and they are :
(i) Dyscalculia (Math dyslexia): This inability to comprehend
(ii)Dysgraphia (Writing disability):Problem with writing legibly and coherently,If a child can’t read well, how can they write well.
(iii)Visual Dyslexia: reading difficulty resulting from vision
(iv)Auditory dyslexia: This kind of dyslexia involves difficulty
with hearing sounds or letters correctly.
(v)Phonological Dyslexia : Inability or difficulty in breaking down words into syllable and individual sound.
CAUSES OF DYSLEXIA IN CHILDREN:
The root cause of dyslexia has not been been ascertained by medical research, though some possible causes have been put forth which are:
(i)Genetics: Some dyslexic disorder runs in the family. Some people were not able to read on time when they were younger, some even started reading even as late as Grade 5 or even later. Unfortunately this gene might become dominant in their children. Although when realized on time certain measures can be put in place to curb or manage it early.
(ii)Brain Injury: Injuries to the head at childhood ,can also lead to dyslexia.I could still recall a child in my class when I was still a teacher in the middle school. She was about 13-14years and still could not read. I and the Literacy teacher tried every trick in the book and we almost got frustrated. I was later informed by the parents that when she was still little, that she had an accident, where she fell headfirst from the staircase and was in the hospital for months.Since then she had always behaved like a child till age 13-14yrs.Lucky for her, she was from a wealthy home,and her parents made sure they got her as many Home Tutors as possible.
HOW TO MANAGE OR SUPPORT CHILDREN WITH DYSLEXIA.
Dyslexia has no cure,but can only be managed when discovered at early age.These are some ways to manage children with dyslexia.
(i)Evaluate child and discover the kind of dyslexia child is struggling with.
(ii)Visit your child’s teacher and discuss ways to help child learn better
(iii)If there are Special Needs Teachers, then there is a better chance of success rate
(iv) Help build your child’s self esteem
(v) Always help child with home work.
(vi)Teach your child how to read well at a tender age,by reading to them.
(vii) Get them simple attractive picture story books.
(viii)Always learn to correct child lovingly without scolding.
(ix)Imbibe a reading culture in them by always encouraging them to read.
(ix)Get your child a home Tutor
PEOPLE WHO HAD DYSLEXIA IN HISTORY AND WERE STILL SUCCESSFUL.
Throughout history,there were many famous people who were dyslexic and were still successful despite all odds, examples were:
(1)Albert Einstein: A world renowned German Mathematician and Physicists who developed the theory of relativity.
(2) Mohammed Ali: The world most celebrated boxing athlete
(3) Steven Spielberg: He’s one of the most popular directors and producers in film history worldwide.
(4) Leonardo da Vinci: One of the world most renowned Artist,Inventor and Scientist in history.
(5) Tom Cruise: Renowned American Actor and director .
(6)Thomas Edison: A renowned American Inventor and business man.
(7)Magic Johnson: One of American most celebrated ex- basket baller.
(8)George Washington: The First American president.
(9)Agatha Christie: The world most successful Novelist who was only outsold by the Bible.
(10)Whoopi Goldberg: An American Grammy award winning actress/comedian,human rights advocate.
(11)Tommy Hilfiger: A world renowned American fashion Icon,the list is endless.
In conclusion we have seen that some of the most brilliant,famous and successful celebrities and individuals had struggled with one form of dyslexia or another and were still able to stand tall despite all odds.Therefore as parents and as Educators,we should always learn to see beyond the learning disabilities in a child,by staying positive and continually bringing out the best in them ,by patience,perseverance,and continous show of love understanding.