Dyslexia child symptoms are an indication of a Learning disorder that hampers the learner’s language-related abilities like reading, comprehension and spellings.
Researches have shown that this disorder is quite common in Children. Developmental Dyslexia is genetic in nature which represents a hereditary deficit in young children.
Around 5% of school-aged children suffer from this heritable disorder.
Some common symptoms of dyslexia to identify among children can be the following:
- Challenges in identifying basic sounds of speech
- Difficulty in making connections between symbols and sounds
- Hampered comprehension accuracy
- Troubles with all forms of language (spoken and written)
- Difficulty to spell
Other than the common number reversal dyslexia, there are some more types and causes of this disorder.
Here’s how we can distinguish this language processing disorder from other similar medical conditions:
- During early childhood, dyslexic kids take more time to speak. They also find it hard to pronounce words correctly and often end up pronouncing them incorrectly.
- In the initial grades of elementary school, they avoid reading and prefer activities other than these.
- Another common symptom of this disorder is related to the sequence of letters. These children unknowingly, reverse letters and even skip some letters of a whole word.
- Broadly, this learning disability can be identified in a child, if his/her intelligence level is good/average but the reading skills are comparatively poor.
If any of these symptoms are present in a child, a parent/guardian must take professional assistance or simply take a dyslexia test to identify the level of this disorder.
Like any other physical or mental condition, an early diagnosis of dyslexia helps in
dealing with it better and gradually the child gets alternate ways of living with it.
Dyslexia child symptoms are an indication that the child needs extra care and help from adults. Specifically, during school education, these kids need extra handholding for their language skill-building.
Some dyslexic kids also require a special educator who can help them with their spellings, reading and symbol comprehension abilities. Other than this, they need extra time to complete their work as compared with other peers and this leverage has to be provided.
It’s important for people to understand that dyslexia in children can be handled with
certain techniques and most importantly patience.
The greatest support for a dyslexic child is the emotional support from adults. So, parents, teachers and counselors must help these kids patiently through coping strategies and carefully planned instructions.
Here’s a look at some of these strategies:
1. Make Use of Multisensory Approach-
A dyslexia test can tell us about the actual level of competencies and the workable areas in a child. The next step is to plan an instructional delivery that can work best with the child.
In most cases, these kids understand better visually. Images, graphics, videos, presentations, and slides, etc. are appealing to them and you can engage them easily through the multisensory approach.
For this, you can involve body movements and other senses like touch, hearing, taste, etc. You can make use of attractive glitters/colorful pens/markers and other materials like lentils, beads, cardboard cut-outs and flashcards for these learners.
All in all, experiential learning goes well with them.
2. Repetition and Extra Time Allocation-
Be it the number reversal dyslexia or any other type, it can be improved with a thumb rule- PRACTICE!
With dyslexic kids, a lot of repetition, reading aloud and sequential advancement for language building is the best way out. The teacher/parent should first start with simpler and direct sounds. The child should be given a lot of practice time before advancing to the next and more complex sounds.
Another way in which the best online high school and other schools help these children is through extra time.
On and off these kids should be given ‘one on one’ sessions, involving personalized
instructions as per their learning style and intelligence type.
If a teacher uses fun games and exercises to drill pronunciation and sounds, it’s more effective. Especially at the elementary stage, these activities are perfect for children.
Make sure you link the child’s existing knowledge with the new one. For example- teaching sounds/pronunciation with pictures of animals, cartoons or other familiar sounds is easy for the child to pick as he/she is already aware of it.
You can also use quiz techniques with positive reinforcement during special learning sessions with these children.
When you take up text-related activities (through loud reading), it is always helpful to tell the child the meaning of the text for better retention of information.
Dyslexia child symptoms adversely affect the child’s retention power and you need to build a connection with the information so that the kid can remember and recall later.
3. Break the Words-
Dyslexia in children makes it difficult for them to identify sounds and words and even more difficult to pronounce them correctly. To improve this, a teacher/parent should use the technique of breaking a word and repeating it again and again with the spelling.
This will help the child to recognize the sound and he/she will not skip any part of the word during pronunciation. Use of pictures and identification of vowel or consonant sounds can help to build correct pronunciation.
For example- If we take up the word ‘hopeful’, we can break it to ‘hope’ and ‘full’ and both these words can be explained with examples separately.
Words that have a prefix, suffix or both of these can be tricky and need more practice. For instance- quickly, unhappy, replayed, etc.
4. Word Wall-
Motivation is another tool in the hands of an able teacher/parent while teaching a dyslexic child. Children with number reversal dyslexia or similar learning disorders tend to become emotionally unstable and left out at times.
Star charts, word walls, etc. are perfect to motivate and encourage these kids. These activities are about telling the child that he/she has mastered ‘X’ number of words.
You can also bank upon these techniques to drive a passion for further learning. Divide the same chart into another colorful part and mention the upcoming words or clues attached to them. Do not overdo this one, as it is just to give a hint to the child and keep him/her waiting for more.
These little practices of encouragement can help to learn better. And also strengthen the bond/rapport between teacher/parent and the child.
5. Be Empathetic-
Another important aspect is that once you identify dyslexia child symptoms, practice empathy with the child. Naturally, the child will hesitate in reading activities and might also struggle to express in written or verbal forms.
Understand that it’s a part of the disorder and there are no overnight miracles that we can expect. Use the strategies of an inclusive classroom and make provisions for allowing extra time to the child.
If you choose online education, this aspect becomes easier, because the batches of an accredited online school are comparatively much smaller than a traditional school classroom.
Besides, watch your language or any signs of negative body language since learning disorders need to be managed sensitively. For parents or teachers, patience is the only key. Before you call it a day, do check for understanding and fill the gaps (if any) for better results.
6. Online Learning Tools-
Studies have revealed that immediate feedback is the best tool
to manage dyslexia in children!
Ed-tech (for example- audiobooks, word prediction tools, talking calculators, etc.) is perfect for students with learning disabilities as they get instant feedback and can correct their mistakes in less time.
Overall, they can advance at their own comfortable pace and understand better in an online learning environment.
With virtual learning solutions, they also get their free/flexible space and overcome fears of being judged by peers in traditional classrooms.
Other than the classroom implications, technology also offers some practical solutions for these learners. Computerized tests like Dyslexia Test, Reading Competency Test, Word Recognition, Phonological Awareness Test and Picture Naming Test, etc. help to judge their reading component skills. (Source- The National Center for Biotechnology Information -U.S. National Library of Medicine)
Let’s Wrap Up…..
Dyslexia child symptoms are disheartening for many parents. But at the same time, one must not lose hope.
We have some great examples of celebrities/achievers around us who have made it big despite this learning disorder…….Tom Cruise, Steve Jobs, Cher to name a few.
They managed to defeat this disorder and reached the pinnacle of success in their respective fields. So, there’s definitely a bright side to this and it’s just about identifying these strengths and working on them!
Hope you got some relevant insights about dyslexia in children.
Thanks for reading!
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