Discovering Dyslexia

by Marni McNiff

Dyslexia, an impairment in the brain’s ability to translate images received from the eyes and ears into understandable language, is one of the most common learning disabilities in the United States. The National Institutes of Health reports that 60–80% of people with learning disabilities have problems with reading and language skills.

The exact causes of dyslexia are still not known. The International Dyslexia Association’s website states, “the anatomical and brain imagery studies show differences in the way the brain of a dyslexic person develops and functions. Moreover, most people with dyslexia have been found to have problems with identifying the separate speech sounds within a word and/or learning how letters represent those sounds, a key factor in their reading difficulties. Dyslexia is not due to either lack of intelligence or desire to learn; with appropriate teaching methods, dyslexics can learn successfully.”

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Preventing the Summer Reading Slide

Every summer I worry that my daughter will lose the academic skills it took her all year to attain. If you have a child diagnosed with dyslexia, another specific learning disability, or attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD), I’m sure this “summer slide” has crossed your mind, too. So what’s the best way to help our children hold on to what they have learned?
Two words: summer reading. According to James S. Kim, Ed.D., assistant professor of education at the Harvard Graduate School of Education, kids who read during t he summer tend to be better prepared academically – and need less review – for to prepare for back-to-school in the fall. Your child’s school website will usually have a summer reading list. Here is also a great list from The Yale Center for Dyslexia & Creativity as well as a comprehensive list from ADDitude Magazine.

PATH Online Auction

 

Are you a Connecticut restaurant or business that would like to help PATH?

Our Parent Support program best known as The Listener Program; provides support services critical to many Connecticut families who live with the sometimes unimaginable situation of raising a child with developmental disabilities or special health care needs. The program provides training, one-to-one parent matches, follow-up services and an inspirational and informational newsletter at no cost to families. Other critical programs include navigation of complex healthcare programs and services, resource research and advocacy, support and training for parents dealing with difficult issues at school or state agencies. (Please visit www.pathct.org for a complete description of our programs).

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