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You are in: Home > Articles > Specific Learning Difficulty (Dyslexia)

Specific Learning Difficulty (Dyslexia)


Specific Learning Difficulty (Dyslexia)

The following information is from the booklet 'Dyslexia: Your First Questions Answered' available from The British Dyslexia Association .

What is Dyslexia?
The word dyslexia comes from Greek and means 'difficulty with words'. It is a difference in the part of the brain which processes language, and it affects skills that are needed for learning one or more of reading, writing, spelling and numeracy. This does not mean that dyslexic people cannot become fully literate. With suitable help they can succeed, and dyslexic people often have different and valuable problem-solving abilities.

What is a Specific Learning Difficulty?
It is another term for dyslexia. Dyslexia is one of several specific leaning difficulties which come under the umbrella term 'specific learning difficulties'. It means that the difficulties are specific rather than more general learning difficulties.

What are the Indications for School Children?
One of the most marked characteristics of dyslexic children is the surprising difficulty they have at school when it is clear that they are at least as able as others who have no problems. There is also a tendency for unaccountable 'bad days' when they seem unable to do what they can on a 'good day'. Different age groups present problems in varying ways.

Age 9 or under

Particular difficulty learning to read and write.

Persistent and continued reversing of numbers and letter (e.g. 15 for 51, b for d).

Difficulty telling left from right.

Difficulty learning the alphabet and multiplication tables, and remembering sequences such as the days of the week and months of the year.

Continued difficulty with shoelaces, and ball-catching, and skipping etc.

Inattention and poor concentration.

Frustration, possibly leading to behavioural problems.

Age 9-12

Continued mistakes in reading, or a lack of reading comprehension.

Strange spelling, perhaps with letters missed out or in the wrong order.

Taking longer than average over written work.

Disorganisation at home and at school.

Difficulty copying accurately from blackboard or textbook.

Difficulty taking down oral instructions.

Growing lack of self-confidence and increasing frustration.

Age 12 and over

Tendency to read inaccurately, or without comprehension.

Inconsistent spelling.

Difficulty with planning and writing essays.

Tendency to confuse verbal instructions and telephone numbers.

Severe difficulty in learning a foreign language.

Low self-esteem.

Difficulty with perception of language, e.g. following instructions, listening comprehension.

Note! Not all dyslexic children will display all these characteristics. For further information contact the British Dyslexia Association.

The booklet goes on to answer the following questions:

How can parents ensure their child's problem is recognised?
What is a statement?
How can parents help?
What kind of teaching support is best?
Can the non-specialist classroom teacher help?
I was never much good at school. Might I be dyslexic?
What shall I do about it?

The booklet also gives details of the help available for individuals after leaving school and information on how the British Dyslexia Association can help.

For more details contact: The British Dyslexia Association http://www.bdadyslexia.org.uk/



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