Is Dyslexia Confusing You?

Reading difficulty

The word 'dyslexia' simply means difficulty understanding written words so it really just means a "reading difficulty." Specifically, it means a learning disability which affects reading.

The confusion

The confusion comes when you start dealing with the term as it relates to "special education services".There are very strict criteria (which differ from State to State) which determine if your child has a learning disability as it is defined by special education rules. If your child's reading difficulty is severe enough to meet this criteria, special education services are indicated.

No clearly defined criteria

On the other hand, dyslexia has no clearly defined criteria. If your child has any degree of reading difficulty he or she may be considered "dyslexic" according to some educational specialists. This happens more often when your child is taught outside of the public school system as in home schooling.

May not need special ed

So, if your child is labeled as dyslexic, he or she may or may not need any special education services. Please note that many learning disabled students experience reading difficulty and probably could be considered dyslexic. However, the term is hardly ever used in public schools because they lack any strict or measurable criteria.

Causes

For a detail description of the causes of dyslexia visit:
Dyslexia and Learning Disabilities Info

Helpful Tips

Here are some things you can do with your child (actually these are good tips for everyone):

Have your child:

  1. Read the summary or review questions first. Your child will have a better understanding so he or she will make more sense out the details.
  2. Look at pictures if they are available. Your child will get the general meaning by using his or her visual processing skills.
  3. Skim through each paragraph looking for the "topic sentence". Your child will get the basic idea of the whole paragraph and will be able to piece everything else together and make sense of it.
  4. When taking a test that requires reading, look at the questions first. Your child will know what information to look for.
  5. Read out loud. Your child will be able to stay focused and pick up the aural information.

Further Help

A great source of help is: BrainSkills