"I think my child might have dyslexia. What should I do?"
This is one of the most common questions we receive. First, we recommend becoming familiar with signs and symptoms of dyslexia. Start by watching this video called "Could It Be Dyslexia?" by dyslexia expert Susan Barton. Although it over an hour long, it is worth the time.
What is Dyslexia? A video from Susan Barton
Next, review the information below regarding symptoms of dyslexia. A dyslexic child will have many of these warning signs. This chart is also an excellent summary of dyslexia signs and symptoms at different ages..
In addition, try to find out if there is a family history of dyslexia. Dyslexia has a strong genetic basis and runs in families. According to the American Academy of Pediatrics (2011), around 40% of siblings, children, or parents of someone with dyslexia will also have it. Remember that many dyslexics are not diagnosed, so instead of asking family members if they have dyslexia, ask if they had trouble learning to read, write or spell.
Symptoms - Preschool Age
- Delayed speech
- Speech articulation problems
- Mispronunciation of words (bisghetti for spaghetti, aminal for animal)
- Saying the wrong word or forgetting the word (dysnomia)
- Difficulty rhyming words
- Difficulty manipulating the sounds of speech (what is the word CAT if you take away the /c/ sound?)
- Difficulty remembering letter names and sounds
- Difficulty learning to count
Symptoms - School Age:
- Difficulty learning sight words
- Difficulty spelling words, especially retaining the correct spelling after a test
- Misreading words
- Skipping sight words when reading
- Slow and choppy reading
- Problems with word recall
- Handwriting that is slow, messy, non-automatic (dysgraphia)
- Problems with number sense and math concepts (dyscalculia)
- Problems with rote memorization, such as math facts, states/capitals
- Low self-esteem