Do you have students in your class that have dyslexia? Do you know much about dyslexia; what it is, how to identify dyslexia and how to accommodate students that have dyslexia?
When I was in the classroom teaching, I didn’t really know too much about dyslexia and definitely had no idea how to identify a student that may have dyslexia. If you’re in this position as well and would like to know more about identifying students in your class that may have dyslexia, then have a read of my article:
I also wanted to bust some dyslexia myths. There seems to be a vast number of views by parents, teachers and in general the community about what dyslexia is and isn’t. So I thought I’d share with you some of the myths I’ve heard over the years and clarify why I think they’re a myth. I also link to other articles that explain further.
- There is no quick fix for dyslexia or a magic cure. However, the impact of dyslexia can be significantly reduced through effective intervention using a direct, explicit, systematic and structured approach and ideally introduced at an early age.
- You do not need to wait until the age of 8 to have a child tested for dyslexia. Children in kindergarten can be tested for dyslexia, however see the next point.
- It is unlikely that a child will be assessed as having dyslexia until they have had a minimum of 6 months specialist intervention targeting the area(s) of difficulty. Early intervention is effective in closing the gap for struggling readers and should be a first step.
- Dyslexia is not due to lack of effort or from being lazy or dumb. It may take dyslexic students longer to complete work and therefore they get tired from working harder.
- Dyslexia is not a developmental lag where students will catch up to their peers if you give them time.
- Dyslexia is not a visual problem.
- Using Vision Therapy (VT) is not a treatment that will help a student with dyslexia.
- Coloured overlays and tinted lenses are expensive and there is no research evidence to support their use as a treatment for dyslexia.
- Just because a ‘so called’ treatment (or low and behold a cure) for dyslexia shows pictures of brains, makes claims relating to neuroscience and has good testimonials, doesn’t mean that it is an effective approach or that it has any scientific research basis. They are just clever at marketing. Here is an enlightening video that talks about how to evaluate treatments of dyslexia and how you can tell if it’s likely to work or not.
- Not all students with dyslexia reverse letters and words. Don’t use this as your only guide in determining if you think a student has dyslexia. Reversals and backwards writing are common in the early stages of writing for both dyslexic and non-dyslexic children.
Do you have any dyslexia myths you want to bust? Share them in the comments below.