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Compare dyslexic and non-dyslexic brains in almost any way you can think of, and you’ll find differences. At the level of large-scale brain structure there are differences in the ways the outer brain layers are folded. At the microscopic level there are differences in the ways the brain cells are organized to work together. And at the level of brain function you’ll find differences between dyslexic and non-dyslexic people not just with reading and spelling, but with many other aspects of perception, memory, attention, motor function, and even certain aspects of higher order thinking–and some of these differences create advantages for dyslexics!

Bottom line: dyslexia is not fundamentally a disorder or a disability–though we can make it one if we fail to treat people with dyslexia in the right ways. What dyslexia really is a difference, a form of cognitive diversity–and one that’s well worth understanding and cultivating for the advantages it can bring, both to dyslexic people and to society as a whole.

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