It seems that everyone is getting on the bandwagon of diagnosing children and adults with the label of DYSLEXIA! Many of the newly diagnosed will call my office for a second opinion. While it is true that dyslexia is a real occurrence, other reasons for academic failure may be responsible.
For example, students who have a history of ear infections and tubes in their ears may be targeted. Reading and language weaknesses can be caused by unclear speech, poor auditory memory, weak processing – all due to ear infections! With appropriate programming, students can be completely remediated and return to classes at the top!
Many students today have difficulties because of poor reading programs in school curriculums. Most often systematic and intense phonics result in a very successful student.
Parents call me to report that it is painful for them to hear their child’s reading. They stumble over longer words and may even mumble when oral reading. This is not dyslexia but a failure of the student to apply syllabication rules or lack of “structural analysis”. The skill of “chunking” words does not work! Incidentally, it is the number one reasons that students score lower on the ACT. They can’t read the longer words!
If these events resonate with you, or your students, then they are not likely dyslexic.
My next post will cover the skills and limited training of the many people misdiagnosing dyslexia.