Identify dyslexia, make learning easier for your kids - Camp Lejeune Globe: Carolina Living

Identify dyslexia, make learning easier for your kids

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Posted: Thursday, September 6, 2018 12:00 am

School can be tough. Learning a variety of subjects, juggling extracurricular activities and trying to make friends are just some of the challenges that come with a school setting. Now imagine you have a condition that makes learning more difficult. That is the case for individuals with dyslexia. With school now in full effect, I want to shed light on this learning disorder which to aid parents with some important information.

What is dyslexia exactly? According to the International Dyslexia Association, dyslexia is defined as a language-based learning disability. It is comprised of a group of symptoms that cause people to have trouble with language-based capabilities, especially reading. Other language difficulties in spelling, writing and pronunciation may also be present. Dyslexia is classified as a learning disability because of the significant impact it has on the ability of students to perform well in school.

While dyslexia affects individuals differently throughout life, it does remain. Your children will not simply “outgrow” it. Here are some signs to look out for:

• Difficulty in learning to speak

• Difficulty in learning letters and their sounds

• Trouble with organizing written and spoken language

• Struggling to memorize number-based facts

• Issues with reading quickly enough to comprehend material

• Trouble with spelling and related subjects

It is important to note that dyslexia is not an issue of intelligence, work ethic or vision. These are some common misconceptions people have about the condition. People with dyslexia can be very bright and gifted intellectually. I also want to highlight that if your child is displaying these symptoms, he/she may not necessarily have dyslexia. Other disorders such as Auditory Processing Disorder and Language Processing Disorder can also cause difficulties. Problems with nutrition, sleep or exposure to trauma can also affect children’s learning abilities.

Dyslexia can be diagnosed by a licensed clinical professional with diagnostic testing. Your child’s school may also have available resources for proper diagnosing. As with most mental health disorders, early intervention can make a huge difference. Treatment is also available and can include specialized education to give a student one-on-one assistance. Other techniques to help in a learning setting are:

• Use of audio books

• Use of large print books with bigger line spacing

• Provide a copy of lecture notes

• Allowing use of a laptop or other digital device for written assignments

• Multi-sensory teaching methods (using touch, sight and sound, etc.)

• Instructing students on the usage of logic rather than memorization

• Presenting learning material in smaller units

The path to overcoming dyslexia can be tedious but the effort is not in vain. People with dyslexia can go on to achieve great success (Steven Spielberg, Tom Cruise and Pablo Picasso to name a few). Do not let the reality of your child having dyslexia keep you from pushing them to dream big. Keep dreaming, keep learning.

For local resources on dyslexia, visit www.mccslejeune-newriver.com/counseling. For more information on dyslexia, visit www.dyslexiaida.org.

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