Symptoms of dyslexia in children

symptoms of dyslexia

Don't miss a thing

In a recent episode of Dadsnet’s Diffability podcast, Paul and Michael spoke to Jen Ferguson of It’s the Fergusons. Jen has two children with a dyslexia diagnosis, aged eight and ten, and she told the hosts that they have very different learning styles. Paul and Michael wanted to find out more about the experience of parenting children with dyslexia, the symptoms of dyslexia in children and any advice that Jen had to share. 



What is dyslexia?

The British Dyslexia Association says “dyslexia is a learning difficulty that primarily affects the skills involved in accurate and fluent word reading and spelling.”


Jen told Paul and Michae about her experience of the symptoms of dyslexia: “It is so different for every diagnosis, but Ted’s was clearly that he struggled to read. He actually avoided books and stories. Spelling, disorganisation, poor social skills, low self-confidence comes out in so many different ways.”


symptoms of dyslexia


Discovering dyslexia at school


When referring back to a previous episode in which an adult told them of the tough time they had at school with dyslexia, the host asked Jen what the experience is like for her children. She told them that Ted’s school had been fantastic, with the advantage of having an understanding teacher who worked with them and supported them in helping Ted through school. 


In order to get a diagnosis, the school puts in place the first step. “They do a screener at school,” said Jen, “the SENCO [Special Educational Needs Co-ordinator] will do a screener to see if there’s a possibility that the child might have dyslexia. And then you can decide to go and get a private diagnosis. So Teddy had a screener at school, and then we paid for a private diagnosis.”


The private diagnoses cost Jen around £300, although you can get a diagnosis on the NHS if you join the waiting list. 

How dyslexia affects young people

When talking about the effect of dyslexia on young people, Jen says that, in Ted’s case, it affected him away from his actual school work


She told Paul and Michael, “Ted particularly was affected really badly in how he felt about himself. He couldn’t understand why he, in his own mind, wasn’t the same as everyone else in his class. And we didn’t know that at the time because he was too young to be able to verbalise it.


But now he’s eight. He literally just said to us the other day that having that diagnosis totally changed him as a person. And when we asked him why, he said it’s because he doesn’t feel like a failure anymore.”


Jen feels that Ted’s symptoms of dyslexia were missed because it can be difficult to pin down what is happening in young children. It was only when he stopped wanting to go to school that they thought about dyslexia.


“He became a school refuser,” said Jen, “we couldn’t get him to go to school. Yeah. He was terrified of school. That was unusual. Because he was going to a lovely school with lovely teachers and lovely friends, but something was making him so uncomfortable that we couldn’t physically get him out of the car to get him into school.”


symptoms of dyslexia

More about dyslexia in young people

To find out more about the symptoms of dyslexia in kids, how to support children with dyslexia and why Jen is not worried about Ted dealing with secondary school, listen to this episode of Diffability in full. 


Do you have advice on how to support children with dyslexia? Leave it in the Comments

Don't miss a thing

More from Dadsnet...


Submit a Comment

Enjoying Dadsnet?

Become a member for FREE!

Simply enter your email below to receive exclusive updates and content.

Success! Check your inbox as you'll receive an email from us shortly.