Web Analytics

Reading (Part 2)

Problems with reading comprehension, while still common in dyslexia, are not quite as common as problems with decoding, word recognition, or fluency. The most characteristically “dyslexic” source of difficulty with reading comprehension would come from having so much trouble identifying the words in a passage that the meaning of the passage becomes jumbled. But comprehension […]

Reading (Part 1)

Dyslexia is usually defined as a disorder of reading; but not all problems with reading are due to dyslexia, and most people with dyslexia don’t struggle with all aspects of reading. The most common and characteristic dyslexia-associated reading problem is learning to decode words quickly and accurately. Difficulty recognizing words that have often been encountered […]

Basic Skills (Part 2)

When thinking about the problems with basic academic skills that people with dyslexia often have, it’s important to recognize that these problems usually don’t stop at the arbitrary boundaries of “reading and spelling” that the diagnosis of dyslexia implies. Many dyslexic people find various “basic skills” aspects of writing difficult, including handwriting, punctuation, capitalization, and […]

Basic Skills (Part 1)

It’s important to recognize that for people with dyslexia, academic challenges arise mostly from problems mastering low-level basic skills. These basic skills are supported in part by centers of the brain that specialize in creating automatic, habitual, or reflex like responses to inputs, and these kinds of automatic responses are typically less easily mastered by […]

Mastery (Part 2)

Most dyslexic students can read to some degree. Some love to read, read a lot, and may comprehend relatively well. Almost always, though, they read slowly, have problems decoding new or unfamiliar words, and are poor spellers. And if they haven’t truly mastered reading to the level of their general mental ability, despite receiving appropriate […]

Mastery (Part 1)

Many people mistakenly believe that a dyslexic person is someone who can’t read at all, or can’t be taught to decode even a little. Sometimes we’ll hear from teachers: “I’ve been teaching for 30 years and I’ve never seen a student who was dyslexic”. In reality, they’ve almost certainly had several dyslexic students in their […]

Automatic (Part 2)

Individuals with dyslexia often show difficulties mastering automatic skills. For some, these problems affect only language-based learning, which includes most of the familiar basic academic skills, like decoding, spelling, math facts memorization, and written mechanics like punctuation and capitalization. For others, motor-skills can be involved, and these students can struggle with primarily fine motor skills […]

Automatic (Part 1)

A task is “automatic” when you can do it without conscious effort. For reading, the ability to automatically recognize or decode words allows you to identify the words quickly and effortlessly, so you’ll have enough conscious processing space (or working memory) left over to comprehend and think about what you’re reading.   Automaticity is built […]

Fluent (Part 2)

To accurately assess passage-level reading fluency, students must be tested on passages of several degrees of difficulty; otherwise we’ll miss important reading challenges. Many verbally talented students with dyslexia won’t show problems reading passages on familiar topics with familiar words; but they’ll struggle to read texts with advanced or unfamiliar material–including foreign languages. That’s why […]

Fluent (Part 1)

In the context of reading, the term fluency means the ability to read accurately and quickly. Reading at a certain speed is necessary to grasp the meaning of a text. It’s like riding a bicycle: you have to reach a certain speed to make it work. Don’t ignore fluency. Decoding and fluency are both are […]