When it comes to dyslexia, the signs and symptoms differ in each person.
You may have noticed that your child finds reading hard, spelling a struggle, or has difficulties remembering things. Each individual who has the condition will have their own unique pattern of strengths and weaknesses.
You may have already asked your child’s school to monitor their progress or complete a dyslexia screener. But at the end of the day, you may be left wondering what do I do to best help my child?
- Get your child’s hearing and eye sight tested. At this stage it is important to make sure that there are no sensory input difficulties. Make sure that you have an investigation into eye tracking as well as a general hearing test.
- Arrange to have a meeting with SENCo at your child’s school. SENCo stands for the Special Education Needs Coordinator, and is the teacher responsible for meeting the additional needs of all children. Try and keep a catalogue of all of the signs and indications that your child has been displaying. If you need a checklist, this is a pretty good one. While a checklist cannot tell you if someone is dyslexic, but it is a useful tool to help understand whether there is a likelihood of dyslexia, and whether further investigation should take place. In the meeting make sure you discuss what signs and indicators you think your child has shown, and ask them to complete a dyslexia screener if you haven’t already completed one.
- Contact a specialist dyslexia assessor and talk to them about your concerns for your child. You may want to have a full diagnostic assessment to clarify whether or not your child is dyslexic. Whether or not your child has it, what the report will highlight are your child’s strengths and weaknesses and will provide you with tailored recommendations for how you can best support your child.
At the end of the day it is really important to remember that dyslexia is not related to a person’s general level of intelligence. Children and adults of all intellectual abilities can be affected. While the exact cause of dyslexia is still unknown, it does appear to run in families. It is thought that genes inherited from your parents may act together and affect how some parts of the brain develop during your early stages of life.