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There are many misconceptions and myths that people have about dyslexia. It is important to address these so that we can have a true understanding of dyslexia. It will help promote the strengths of people who have the condition. Many people think that clever people will not be dyslexic or have a learning disability. The real fact is that there is no relationship between intelligence and dyslexia. There have been many cases of dyslexic people who were very bright and creative and have achieved amazing results.

Dyslexia is one of the most common learning disabilities to affect children. Research has shown that one fifth of all Americans are affected by the condition. Some people may have mild forms of dyslexia whereas others may experience it more severely. This goes to show that dyslexia is more common than we think. Dyslexics have difficulty on reading, writing or spelling.

There are people who think that dyslexia will go away with age. This is really a myth. There is no outgrowing dyslexia. The good news is that dyslexia can be minimized with early and effective intervention.

Science is developed enough to recognise dyslexia as early as age 5. Educational psychologists and specialist dyslexia teachers use special tests to diagnose dyslexia. The sooner the diagnosis, the faster the child can get help. This is important as dyslexic children face much bullying and trauma in the secondary school years. The bullies are not at an age where they will be sensitive to the special needs of the dyslexic. On the personal level, the psychological scars from being bullied lowers an already low self-esteem.

Dyslexia is not a medical problem. There is no medication that can heal dyslexia. It is detected by testing reading, writing and spelling. Such testing does not come within the ambit of a doctor's practice. It is more the area of psychologists and other such therapists who have special training for the purpose. Comparative studies have successfully shown that people may be trained to overcome dyslexia. Brain scans of a person who reads normally and a dyslexic as they read are different. When the dyslexic has been trained to overcome his disability, his brain scan when reading will look just like the normal person's. This is proof that the dyslexics may be helped to overcome their disability.

One thing that can be observed in a dyslexic's writing is that some of the letters will be written backwards. Because of this people used to think that dyslexics see alphabets backwards. This is not true. Normally by the age of 8, most dyslexics will get this problem solved.

Speech therapy is of tremendous benefit for children with dyslexia. It teachers them 'phonemic awareness'. Phonemic awareness is the ability to hear and work with the sounds of letters and letter combinations. Sometimes, it is beneficial to teach the kids the relationship between letters and the sounds they make. Therapies are directed at reducing the child's anxiety about school. It makes it easier for the child to perform in class. Psychological counselling is also sometimes needed to help the child.

Since dyslexics do not make the connection between letters and sounds, the Orton-Gillingham program was designed to address this specific problem. Even after several decades, this program is still the standard for nearly all learning programs. Many teachers choose the strategies developed by this program to teach alphabet and sound. An example of the Orton-Gillingham is having students walk around on the floor in the pattern of a letter.

   

Answer the following questions using complete sentences

 

1.

From paragraph 1, what are dyslexics of low intelligence ?

 

2.

(a) From paragraph 2, what percentage of Americans have dyslexia ?

(b) From paragraph 3, will dyslexia go away as one grows older ?

 

3.

(a) From paragraph 4, what is the earliest age at which dyslexia may be detected ?

(b) Who are the professionals who conduct tests to detect dyslexia ?

 

4.

(a) From paragraph 5, how do the reading brain scans of a normal child and a dyslexic compare ?

(b) From paragraph 5, what does the reading brain scans of a trained dyslexic look like ?

 

5.

'Dyslexia is not a medical problem.'

What characteristic of dyslexia validates this statement ?

Give reasons to support your answer.

Characteristic :

Reason:

 

6.

Based on the passage, write a summary of :

The difficulties that dyslexics face

The good that can happen with specialised training to remove the disability.

 

 

 

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Answers
 

1.

No, dyslexics can be very intelligent people.
 

2.

(a) Twenty percent of Americans have dyslexia.

(b) No, it will not.

 

3.

(a) It is the age of 5.

(b)

(i) Educational psychologists

(ii) Specialised dyslexia teachers

 

4.

(a) They will be very different.

(b) It looks like the reading brain scan of a non-dyslexic.

 

5.

Characteristic: There are no medications or medicinal formulations that can cure dyslexia.

Reason: It is not that no medicines have been discovered to treat dyslexia. Dyslexia is an inability that affects spelling, reading and writing. Being a disability, special training successfully removes it. There is no need for any medicines.

  6. Dyslexia is a condition that affects one fifth of Americans. The same average is valid for the whole world. Dyslexics have difficulty in reading, spelling and writing. Otherwise, their mental faculties are just the same as normal people. The disability can be discovered as early as when one is five years old. The disability is one that can be overcome with training. Then dyslexics are helped with defeating their condition, they sometimes excel in life better than the average person. When the inability is detected, the dyslexics can be given specialised training to overcome their disability. Just as with any other form of disability, once the disability is successfully addressed and overcome, the individuals can become productive citizens. Dyslexics are not a liability to the nation.
 
 
 
 
 

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Comprehension 1

 

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