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About Dyslexia...

Dyslexia is a specific learning disability that is neurological in origin. It is characterized by difficulties with accurate and/or fluent word recognition and by poor spelling and decoding abilities. These difficulties typically result from a deficit in the phonological component of language that is often unexpected in relation to other cognitive abilities and the provision of effective classroom instruction. Secondary consequences may include problems in reading comprehension and reduced reading experience that can impede growth of vocabulary and background knowledge.

Adopted by the IDA Board of Directors, Nov. 12, 2002. This Definition is also used by the National Institute of Child Health and Human Development (NICHD).

Signs of Dyslexia


Signs of dyslexia in young, preschool children include talking later than expected, a slowness to add new words, difficulty rhyming, and trouble following multistep directions.  After a child begins school, the signs of dyslexia include:

  • Difficulty reading single words, such as a word on a flashcard.
  • Difficulty learning the connection between letters and sounds.
  • Confusing small words, such as "at" and "to."
  • Letter reversals, such as "d" for "b."
  • Word reversals, such as "tip" for "pit."


Having one of these signs does not mean your child has dyslexia; many children reverse letters before the age of 7. But, if several signs exist and reading problems persist, or if you have a family history of dyslexia, you may want to have your child evaluated.

Signs of dyslexia in first through third grade children may include...

  • Difficulty remembering simple sequences such as counting to 20, naming the days of the week, or reciting the alphabet.
  • Difficulty understanding the rhyming of words, such as knowing that "fat" rhymes with "cat."
  • Inability to recognize words that begin with the same sound (for example, that "bird," "baby" and "big" all start with the letter "b").
  • Difficulty keeping the rhythm of a song.
  • Frequently using non-specific words to name objects such as "stuff" and "that thing."
  • Difficulty remembering spoken directions.
  • Difficulty remembering the names of places and people.
  • Confusion between right and left, up and down, front and back.

Answering “yes” to some or most of these questions may indicate a learning disability. Not all students who have difficulties with these skills are dyslexic. Formal testing is the only way to confirm a diagnosis of suspected dyslexia.

Certified training by The Dyslexia Center