Dyslexia, ADHD or Both?


In January I attended a Dyslexia presentation at my son’s school, you see my son is also dyslexic. He struggles with far point (from the board) and near point (from a book) copying, phonics, written expression and reading comprehension.

The speaker was Susan Barton, Founder of Bright Solutions for Dyslexia, and wow, what an amazing speaker and how eye opening her presentation was. She spent three and half hours speaking about dyslexia, the warning signs, programs that work and programs that don’t work. Dyslexia is more common then you think, approximately 3-4 out 20 kids in a classroom are dyslexic. Dyslexia is also very common with ADD/ADHD kids, and a dyslexic and ADD/ADHD diagnosis are often confused. I also learned that the saying, “People with dyslexia don’t know how to read”, is a myth, they do know how to read, they just read differently.

Here are a few warning signs of dyslexia she mentioned.

In Preschool

  • Delayed speech
  • Chronic ear infections
  • Constant confusion of left versus right
  • Late establishing a dominant hand
  • Difficulty learning to tie shoes
  • Trouble memorizing address, phone number or alphabet
  • 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 first grade
  • Extreme difficulty learning cursive
  • Slow, choppy, inaccurate reading
  • Terrible spelling
  • Difficulty telling time
  • Trouble with math
  • Extremely messy bedroom, backpack and desk
  • Dreads going to school

In High School

  • Limited vocabulary
  • Poor written expression
  • Unable to master a foreign language
  • Poor grades in many classes

I am fortunate that my son’s school has an inclusion program and I was thrilled he qualified for their dyslexic reading program, Barton Reading & Spelling System.  My son gets pulled out of class 2 days a week reading one-on-one with an inclusion specialist. He has a long ways to go but he has made great strides and is a stronger and more confident reader, and has learned reading tactics that he will use for many years to come. We also listen to Audio Books when we travel in the car and I just learned about the Braille and Talking Books Library (check with your state library for details) and I am planning on using this resource for the upcoming school year.


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