Useful INFORMATION about dyslexia, dysgraphia, dyscalculia, ENTREPRENEURIALism and more.
Best Books on Dyslexia
Overcoming Dyslexia by Sally Shaywitz
Dr. Sally Shaywitz, co-director of the Yale Center for the Study of Learning and Attention and a leader in the current research into how the brain works, offers the latest information about reading problems and proven, practical techniques that, along with hard work and the right help, can enable anyone to overcome them. This book is essential for understanding the physiological changes within the dyslexic brain. A fascinating and life-changing read for those new to the world of dyslexia.
The Dyslexic Advantage by Brock Eide and Fernette Eide
Did you know that many successful architects, lawyers, engineers—even bestselling novelists—had difficulties learning to read and write as children? In this groundbreaking book, Brock and Fernette Eide explain how 20% of people—individuals with dyslexia—share a unique learning style that can create advantages in a classroom, at a job, or at home. Blending personal stories with hard science, The Dyslexic Advantage provides invaluable advice on how parents, educators, and individuals with dyslexia can recognize and use the strengths of the dyslexic learning style. Invaluable for understanding the inherent strengths of your child’s dyslexic mind.
Right Brained Children in a Left Brained World by Jeffery Freed and Laurie Parsons
I always love to learn from others who are hands on in the field. This book is just that. Written by a former teacher and educational therapist, it is full of real life examples of how right-brained thinkers learn best. Full of ideas for teaching strategies too. Now if they would just write Left Brained Parents in a Right Brained Home!
The Dyslexia Empowerment Plan by Ben Foss
After years of battling with a school system that did not understand his dyslexia and the shame that accompanied it, renowned activist and entrepreneur Ben Foss is not only open about his dyslexia, he is proud of it. In The Dyslexia Empowerment Plan he shares his personal triumphs and failures so that you can learn from his experiences, and provides a three-step approach for success:
• Identify your child’s profile: By mapping your child’s strengths and weaknesses and assisting her to better understand who she is, you can help your child move away from shame and feelings of inadequacy and move toward creating a powerful program for learning.
• Help your child help himself: Coach your child to become his own best advocate by developing resiliency, confidence, and self-awareness, and focusing on achievable goals in areas that matter most to him.
• Create community: Dyslexic children are not broken, but too often the system designed to educate them is. Dare to change your school so that your child has the resources to thrive. Understanding your rights and finding allies will make you and your child feel connected and no longer alone.
Packed with practical ideas and strategies dyslexic children need for excelling in school and in life.
Homeschooling the Challenging Child by Christine Field
Written by a former lawyer turned homeschool mother, this book is not exclusively about homeschooling a child with dyslexia rather more about the issues surrounding homeschooling kids with all kinds of challenges. Chapters address how to deal with issues stemming from various learning disabilities, attention disorders, personality clashes, learning styles, discipline problems, managing stress and discouragement, how to plan a program, and the importance of keeping in mind the tenets of God’s love and forgiveness. Hands-on tips for managing a successful home education program, as well as how to find professional help from support groups.
Unicorns Are Real: A Right-Brained Approach to Learning by Barbara Meister Vitale
If you are hopelessly left-brained (linear and logical) like me, you will love this book. Written in an easy to understand style and full of real life practical strategies for teaching the predominantly right-brained learner. The book begins with an easily understood, yet surprisingly in-depth description of brain structure and function as it pertains to learning. The book also contains simple, do-at-home procedures for testing your child for brain dominance.
Your Child’s Growing Mind by Dr. Jane Healy
Considered the classic guide to understanding children’s mental development. She explains the building blocks of reading, writing, spelling, and mathematics and shows how to help kids of all ages develop motivation, attention, critical thinking, and problem-solving skills. She also looks at learning issues, ADHD, and the influences of electronic media – all through the lens of the science of childhood development.
Parenting the Struggling Reader by Susan Hall and Dr. Louis Moats
A very comprehensive, practical guide for recognizing, diagnosing and overcoming any childhood reading difficulty. Written by a mother of a struggling reader (who is also on the board of directors of the International Dyslexia Association) and an educational researcher, this book contains both the clinical information a parent needs but also the practical, everyday solutions and tips needed to successfully help your struggling reader.
Contains an extensive explanation of our role as advocate for our children. Sections are as follows:
Get Ready to Read A wealth of information and tools to educate parents on how younger kids (ages 3-5) learn, the stages of reading readiness and tips, webinars and links to more excellent resources than I can name here. Includes a free online screening tool that you can do with your emergent reader right at home to asses the skills of your child. The screening results let a parent know whether or not to take specific actions such as introducing new skills, offer additional instruction, practice or support or if further assessment is needed.
LD Online One of the best informational sites on learning disabilities and ADHD. The site features hundreds of helpful articles, multimedia, a comprehensive resource guide, discussion forums, and a referral directory of professionals, schools and products. Also offers information and resources for the transition from highschool to college and from college to the workplace for adults with learning disabilities.
Dyslexic Advantage From the writers of the book of the same name. This site is full of information, current research and forums to start and contribute to discussions of issues important to you.
The Yale Center for Dyslexia & Creativity Concise site full of information for parents, educators and policy-makers.
International Dyslexia Association: The International Dyslexia Association (IDA) is a national non-profit dedicated to helping individuals with dyslexia, their families, and the communities that support them. Visit their site to connect with a local branch near you, find IDA-member providers in your area, and learn more about dyslexia.
Parent Center Network-Parent Center Listing: If you are the parent of a K-12 student with dyslexia, you’ll want to take a look at this site and find your nearest Parent Training and Information Center (PTI). PTIs are funded by the federal government and offer parents assistance in navigating special education and their child’s rights under the Individuals with Disabilities Education Act (IDEA).
Dyslexia Help at the University of Michigan: Dyslexia Help is designed to help you understand and learn about dyslexia and language disability. Visit their site for a wealth of information for individuals with dyslexia, parents and professionals. If you’ve ever wondered about celebrities who have dyslexia, be sure to check out their “Dyslexia Success Stories” section.
Bright Solutions for Dyslexia Susan Barton is the developer of the Barton Reading & Spelling System. This is a science-based program that you can easily do from home. Be sure to have your child tested before beginning any treatment program to know for sure what your child’s specific areas of weakness are. Her site is full of information on dyslexia along with several informative videos.
http://homeschoolingwithdyslexia.com/ Website created by a homeschool mom of 5 dyslexic children.
LexiaLearners.com Keep up to date on local events we will be hosting or participating in. Gotta give my company a little plug. ;)
Recommendations for Homeschool Curricula for Students with Dyslexia
classicalconversations.com (Christian based multi-sensory program)
Life of Fred
Right Start Math
Learn Math Fast
Teaching Textbooks (beginning in 3rd grade)
Whatever you do, please choose a program that uses an Orton-Gillingham approach
Barton Reading and Spelling System (for age 5 and older) www.bartonreading.com
Wilson Reading System www.wilsonlanguage.com
Smart Kids Who Hate to Read
All About Reading
www.kedapublications.co.uk Toe by Toe/Stride Ahead Geared towards older students.
All About Spelling
Handwriting Without Tears (check out their iPad app!)
Smart Kids Who Hate to Write
History (both of these curricula have read alouds and hands-on resources)
Story of the World Audio
Hands on Science projects
Apologia: Exploring Creation With Series (Christian Based)
Dyslexia & Dyscalculia Screening/Homeschool Support/Tutoring
Some of the information has been reproduced from homeschoolingwithdyslexia.com and natureoflearning.com/
As one of our outstanding tutors was diligently tutoring one of her student’s last week, we will call him Drew; she asked him, “Which letter comes first, the C or the K?” Drew’s response was not what she expected to here….he said, “I can’t tell, they keep moving”.
This is a phenomenon is common among people with dyslexia, but Jess had not personally experienced this; no one in her family and none of my students have ever spoken of this being an issue for them. When Jess’ second oldest son, we will call him Angel, was in school they found overlays to be helpful. Jess assumed that would be beneficial for moving letters as well. When she returned to the office, Jess began doing some research and sure enough, overlays are the suggested remedy for words and letter movement.
Drew, who is 9, quickly wanted to tell the teacher the exciting news! His tutor had to explain to Drew that first, he needs to find out what color works best for him. Interestingly enough, different colors will be beneficial for each person. Blue is commonly, the best color for the majority of people, but for some it is not. If older students and adults are uncomfortable placing overlays on top of their books or computer, another option is special glasses with colored lens. The use of overlays or colored lenses contributes to increased Self-Esteem and independence.
Overlays can help so many people in so many different situations, such as:
One student thoughts regarding overlays:
“Overlays help me concentrate more and focus on one word at a time.” –Anthony, Orange County.
To order colored overlays visit our Store Page.
No two people will exhibit the same signs of dyslexia. Below you will find some commons signs of dyslexia, if you find that you or your child display 3 or more of the following signs, I encourage you to learn more about dyslexia. Early intervention is the best this to help a dyslexic student succeed. If you or your child are already older, do not despair, if is never too late to teach "an old dog new tricks"
Common Signs of Dyslexia
• delayed speech
• mixing up the sounds and syllables in long words
• chronic ear infections
• constant confusion of left versus right
• late establishing a dominant hand
• difficulty learning to tie shoes
• trouble memorizing their address, phone
number, or the alphabet
• can’t create words that rhyme
• a close relative with dyslexia
In Elementary School
• dysgraphia (slow, non-automatic handwriting
that is difficult to read)
• letter or number reversals continuing past the end of
• extreme difficulty learning cursive
• slow, choppy, inaccurate reading:
- guesses based on shape or context
- skips or misreads prepositions (at, to, of)
- ignores suffixes
- can’t sound out unknown words
• terrible spelling
• often can’t remember sight words (they, were, does)
or homonyms (their, they’re, and there)
• difficulty telling time with a clock with hands
• trouble with math
- memorizing multiplication tables
- memorizing a sequence of steps
• when speaking, difficulty finding the correct word
- lots of “whatyamacallits” and “thingies”
- common sayings come out slightly twisted
• extremely messy bedroom, backpack, and desk
• dreads going to school
- complains of stomach aches or headaches
- may have nightmares about school
In High School
All of the above symptoms plus:
• limited vocabulary
• extremely poor written expression
- large discrepancy between verbal skills
and written compositions
• unable to master a foreign language
• difficulty reading printed music
• poor grades in many classes
• may drop out of high school
Education history similar to above, plus:
• slow reader
• may have to read a page 2 or 3 times to
• terrible speller
• difficulty putting thoughts onto paper
- dreads writing memos or letters
• still has difficulty with right versus left
• often gets lost, even in a familiar city
• sometimes confuses b and d, especially when tired
Copied with permission from Susan Barton
Perhaps you are wondering, "What are all of these dys'?"
Well allow me to enlighten you... they are Neurological differences in the brain that cause people to learn differently than the majority of people learn. Dyslexia is of course the most known of the 4 cousins, but they are all real. 1 in 5 people have dyslexia, 1 in 10 people have dysgraphia. All require people to learn differently than how traditional schools teach students to learn. All of these words are of Greek origin. Dys means badly. Lexia mean to write. Calculia is math and praxia are whole coordination systems.
Dyslexia is a language based learning difference. Dyslexia refers to a cluster of symptoms, that result in people having difficulties with specific language skills, particularly reading. Students with dyslexia often experience difficulties with both oral and written other language skills, such as writing, and pronouncing words and writing. Dyslexia affects individuals throughout their lives; however, its impact can change at different stages in a person’s life. It is referred to as a learning disability because dyslexia can make it very difficult for a student to succeed without phonics-based reading instruction that is unavailable in most public schools.. In its more severe forms, a student with dyslexia may qualify for special education with specially designed instruction, and as appropriate, accommodations. Copied from International Dyslexia Association Dyslexia Research, Education & Advocacy
Dysgraphia is a learning difference that affects writing abilities. It can manifest itself as difficulties with spelling, poor handwriting and trouble putting thoughts on paper. Because writing requires a complex set of motor and information processing skills, saying a student has dysgraphia is not sufficient. A student with disorders in written expression will benefit from specific accommodations in the learning environment, as well as additional practice learning the skills required to be an accomplished writer. Copied from National Center for Learning Disabilities (NCLD)
Dyscalculia is a brain-based condition that makes it hard to make sense of numbers and math concepts. Some kids with dyscalculia can’t grasp basic number concepts. They work hard to learn and memorize basic number facts. They may know what to do in math class but don’t understand why they’re doing it. In other words, they miss the logic behind it.Other kids understand the logic behind the math but aren’t sure how and when to apply their knowledge to solving problems. Dyscalculia goes by many names. Some public schools refer to it as a “mathematics learning disability.” Doctors sometimes call it a “mathematics disorder.” Many kids and parents call it “math dyslexia.” Copied from www.understood.org
Dyspraxia can affect planning of movements and co-ordination as a result of brain messages not being accurately transmitted to the body. Individuals with dyspraxia often have language problems, and sometimes a degree of difficulty with thought and perception. Dyspraxia, however, does not affect the person's intelligence, although it can cause learning problems in children. Dyspraxia is also known as Motor Learning Difficulties, Perceptuo-Motor Dysfunction, and Developmental Coordination Disorder (DCD). Copied from Medical News Today
Jess Arce is a homeschool mom of four, a tutor for children & adults who struggle with Dyslexia & Dysgraphia and an all around entrepreneur. She is passionate about helping others understand dyslexia.