Dyslexia affects approximately one in six people worldwide. After reading Nicole’s story earlier this week, you all shared countless narratives, and the responses were a resounding, “Her story is my story.” Despite its prevalence, there is still a significant lack of awareness and understanding surrounding dyslexia. The following information might not be new to our readers, but I encourage you to share this information far and wide to help bring awareness, understanding and visibility.
Dyslexia is a neurological condition that primarily affects reading, spelling, and writing skills. It is not related to intelligence or lack of effort but is instead a result of differences in how the brain processes language. People with dyslexia may have difficulty decoding words, recognizing letter-sound relationships, and mastering the fundamental skills of reading.
The exact cause of dyslexia is still a subject of ongoing research, but it is believed to have genetic and environmental factors. It often runs in families, suggesting a strong genetic component.
Recognizing the Signs
Identifying dyslexia can be challenging, as it manifests differently in each individual. Some common signs and symptoms include:
- Difficulty with reading: People with dyslexia may struggle with reading fluency and comprehension. They might read slowly, mispronounce words, or lose their place while reading.
- Spelling difficulties: Dyslexic individuals often have trouble with spelling, even with common words. They may also find it challenging to remember the correct order of letters in words.
- Difficulty with writing: Dyslexia can affect a person’s ability to express their thoughts in writing. They may have trouble organizing their ideas using proper grammar and may produce written work that is less coherent than expected for their age or educational level.
- Phonological difficulties: Many individuals with dyslexia struggle with phonological awareness, including the ability to recognize and manipulate language sounds. This can affect their ability to learn new words and their overall language skills.
The challenges associated with dyslexia can have a profound impact on individuals throughout their lives. Early academic struggles may lead to a lack of self-confidence, low self-esteem, and a negative view of education. However, it’s important to note that dyslexic individuals often possess unique strengths, such as creativity, problem-solving abilities, and strong visual thinking skills.
In adulthood, dyslexia can continue to present obstacles, especially in the workplace. It may take individuals with dyslexia longer to complete reading and writing tasks, which can lead to stress and frustration. However, with the right support and accommodations, many dyslexic individuals have succeeded in various fields, including business, science, and the arts.
Support and Accommodations
Understanding dyslexia is the first step in providing appropriate support and accommodations for individuals with this condition. Some effective strategies and accommodations include:
- Early intervention: Identifying dyslexia in children and providing targeted interventions can significantly improve their reading and writing skills. Early support is crucial for building confidence and preventing long-term academic difficulties.
- Individualized education plans (IEPs): IEPs can outline specific accommodations and strategies tailored to a student’s needs in schools. This may include extra time for reading and writing assignments, audiobooks, or assistive technology.
- Assistive technology: Various tools and software are designed to assist dyslexic individuals in reading and writing. Text-to-speech software, spell-checkers, and speech recognition programs can be incredibly helpful.
- Tutoring and specialized instruction: Dyslexic individuals can benefit from specialized instruction that focuses on phonemic awareness, decoding skills, and reading comprehension.
By increasing awareness, providing appropriate support, and accommodating the unique needs of dyslexic individuals, we can help make learning easier. With the right resources and understanding, dyslexic individuals can thrive in both educational and professional settings, contributing their unique perspectives and talents to society. It is our collective responsibility to create an inclusive and supportive environment for those with dyslexia, ensuring that they have every opportunity to succeed.
If you have a story you’d like to share with our community, please reach out to Tamara at firstname.lastname@example.org.
2024 Everyone Reading Conference
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If you are interested in presenting or hosting a table at our conference, please contact
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Professional Development Opportunities
Wilson and Everyone Reading are offering a series of virtual workshops on:
Wilson Reading System, Fundations, and Just Words.
More information and registration links can be found at this link:
Structured Literacy: The Science of Reading for All Readers (1.5 CTLE Hours)
Date/Time: Tuesday, October 10th, 6:30 – 8:00 p.m.
In this 90-minute session, participants will learn students’ skills to become skilled readers, including practical ways to implement these evidence-based methods in the classroom.
This session is ideal for teachers of K-2 students and any teacher with struggling readers in their classroom. Parents can also benefit by learning literacy-based terminology and strategies for support at home.
Register here: Structured Literacy: The Science of Reading for All Readers
Prescriptive Instruction: Using Assessments Strategically (1.5 CTLE Hours)
Date/Time: Tuesday, October 24th, 6:30 – 8:00 p.m.
If a child struggles with phonics, is the issue really phonics – or do we need to look back at their phonemic awareness skills? If a student can’t comprehend, is it truly a comprehension issue, or do they struggle with word recognition or vocabulary? This 90-minute session looks deeply at how to use assessment to get to the root cause of our readers’ struggles to be able to provide them with targeted instruction that helps them soar. We’ll also talk about effective small grouping and how to support our secondary students.
This session is ideal for parents, teachers, administrators, tutors, and anyone who wants to give students the most effective support in their literacy acquisition.
Register here: Prescriptive Instruction: Using Assessments Strategically
What about Writing? (1.5 CTLE Hours)
Date/Time: Tuesday, November 14th, 6:30 -8:00 p.m.
Do your children struggle to transfer their reading skills into their writing? Do you struggle to fit writing lessons into an already-packed literacy block as a teacher? Parents, do you struggle to get your child to sit down and start an essay or writing piece? In this 90-minute session, we’ll explore the three main skills required for students to be effective writers and how to develop these skills in an already full day (both in school and at home!)
Register here: What about Writing?