Dyslexia is defined by Rose (2009) as a ‘learning difficulty stemming from weak phonological processing, which primarily affects the skills involved in accurate and fluent reading and writing’.
Dyslexia is not only about difficulties in the acquisition of basic literacy skills, but also affects the way information is processed, stored and retrieved both from the short-term and long-term memory. There may also be difficulties in processing information at speed, phonological and word recognition difficulties, as well as organisation, co-ordination and sequencing. Some people may also find it difficult to read a ‘map’, know their left from their right, follow directions, tell the time.
Some Facts About Dyslexia
- Dyslexia comes from the Greek word ‘Dys’ which means difficulty and ‘lexia’ meaning words or language.
- Dyslexia is biological in origin. It is difficulty in reading, spelling, writing and number work, but can also include difficulty with remembering, sequencing information, word finding, organisation and co-ordination.
- Dyslexia can co-exist with other specific learning difficulties such as ADHD (a medical diagnosis is needed) and Dyspraxia.
- No two people with SpLD will be affected the same.
- Approximately 2–3 children in every classroom will have dyslexia, with approximately 10% of the population having it.
- It often runs in families.
- At school, children are often classified as ‘lazy’ – this is normally not true as they are working far, far harder than their peers to keep up.
- Unidentified and unsupported dyslexia and related conditions can lead to emotional distress, frustration and poor self-esteem and motivation. This could then lead to behavioural problems.
Indicators of Dyslexia
- Is a slow reader or makes unexpected errors when reading aloud
- Struggles to remember what has been read
- Inconsistent spellings – will spell the same word in a variety of different ways
- Struggles with remembering the spelling patterns
- Found it difficult to learn the letters of the alphabet
- Appears to have poor concentration
- Confuses left and right
- Struggles to copy information down when reading from the board
- Finds it difficult to plan and write essays, letters or reports
- Struggles with personal organisation
- Able to answer questions orally but written work is not at the same standard
- Has poor self-esteem and/or lack of motivation
- A family history of dyslexia/learning difficulties