The word Dyslexia comes from Greek language and roughly translated means difficulty with words. Dyslexics tend to have problems with reading and spelling but this can be overcome with specialist teaching which targets the problem So how can you tell if your child or someone else is dyslexic? Here are a few quick points:
1 – Does it run in the family?
Often learning difficulties can run in the family. If you have a family history of dyslexia or learning / reading difficulties then there is a possibility that you may have it yourself.
2 – Confusion with directions
Many dyslexics often struggle with directional words and can easily get confused between left and right, up and down and in and out. A close friend of mine who has dyslexia struggled when learning to drive as she kept on getting confused between her left and right. However this was easily solved by her driving instructor pointing out which way to turn.
3 – Difficulties with sequences
This usually manifests itself as difficulties with colored sequences to start with but can later take the form of difficulties with months of the year, days of the week and the alphabet.
4. Reoccurring spelling mistakes
It is obvious that dyslexics have problems with spelling but there are usually patterns that can be seen that hint at dyslexia. If someone makes a spelling mistake in a piece of text that they've written this mistake is usually continued through the text. Dyslexics have a tendency to spell the same word wrong in a number of different ways through a piece of text. Dyslexics also has problems with similar sounding and looking letters. Letters such as d and t which sound fairly similar can cause a lot of confusion and words with similar shapes such as b and d are often confused.
5 – Co-ordination problems
Dyslexics often tend to be clumsy and often trip or bump into things. They also tend to have problems with catching and kicking balls as well as learning to tie their shoe laces and can struggle when wearing themselves.
People who suffer from dyslexia are by no means unintelligent, in fact some of the greatest minds in history such as Albert Einstein and Sir Isaac Newton were dyslexic. The problem with dyslexia is that if it goes unnoticed and untreated it can lead to self esteem issues and poor self image. Dyslexics can often be left behind at school because they are not taught in the way that they need to be and they are often criticized of not paying attention and not listening. This can lead to further behavior problems and is why it is important for a child who is showing symptoms of dyslexia to be assessed by an educational psychologist. This can be done by contacting your local education authority or you can be referred via the child's school.