Helping Your Child with Dyslexia

Dyslexia is known as a reading disorder, it is characterized by trouble with reading despite normal intelligence. For reading to occur, the brain needs to connect letters to sounds, put those sounds in the right order, and pull the words together into sentences and paragraphs that we can read and comprehend.

Symptoms may include difficulties spelling words, reading quickly, and writing words.
A child with dyslexia struggle to:

  • Read fluently
  • Spell words correctly
  • Learn a second language

Dyslexia is a lifetime struggle. Although individuals with dyslexia can be very intelligent since reading disorders do not tamper with the IQ. Attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD) can occur in people with dyslexia.

Characteristics of Dyslexia and How Parents/Teachers Can Be of Help

Most times, dyslexia is usually noticed in the preschool by teachers. I believe parents can also notice these characteristics and give solutions to it.

1. They feel dumb

Children with dyslexia often have a low self-esteem. They are easily frustrated and emotional about school reading or testing.


  • Ask your child to recite whatever he/she learnt in school. After recitation, make sure you applaud your child. Tell your child how intelligent he is and how he can pass the test if he can put all he recited into written form.
  • To help him overcome frustration, teachers should give him/her extra time during tests and exams.
  • Do not hasten your child to do assignments.

2. Learns best through hands-on experience, demonstration, experimentation, observation, and visual aids.


Teachers and parents should employ the use of visuals in teaching

3. Confused by letters, numbers, words, sequences or verbal explanation


Teachers and parents should try as much to separate letters well.
For example, there should be enough spacing in his book
Parents can represent each letter with a unique name, picture. It will stick to his brain

4. Reads and rereads with little comprehension


  • Read the book to him. Explain what the book says.
  • Use the ‘visual’ method of teaching. For example, the child is to read a comprehension of the elephant and the tortoise, explain the attribute of the elephant and that of the tortoise.
  • Then read the story to him, explain the story and make the best fun out of it. After rereading the story, ask him to explain his version of the story.

5. Difficulty putting thoughts into words

Children suffering from dyslexia most times stutter when speaking


  • Instead of helping him complete his statement, calm down and listen to every word he says
  • Helping him complete his sentence shows that you are impatient and it can make him develop low self-esteem.

6. Easily distracted by sounds


  • He should be taught in an extreme serene environment.
  • As parents, when doing his assignment, turn off the TV, play stations, and MP3

7. Unusually high or low tolerance for pain


  • Help him/her pull through the pain experience

8. Can be an extra deep or light sleep

Bed wetting beyond approximate age can also be present.


Wake him/her during sleep at Intervals

9. Unusually early or late developmental stages

This includes talking, crawling and tying shoes.


  • Teach him/her to basics.
  • Tell him to call ‘daddy, mummy’ and the names of his siblings

Have you ever had any experience with a child who suffers from dyslexia child? How did you handle it or how are you handling it?
Feel free to share with me in the comments below and share this post with others, especially with parents and teachers.


5 thoughts on “Helping Your Child with Dyslexia

  1. While I think this is great article raising awareness about the very real learning disability of dyslexia with lots of important facts and helpful tips, it is also known that often schools employ reading help like guided reading and balanced literacy and these methods of teaching and help are ineffective for students with dyslexia because they do not focus on the decoding skills these students need to succeed in reading.

    What does work is Structured Literacy, which prepares students to decode words in an explicit and systematic manner. This approach not only helps students with dyslexia, but there is substantial evidence that it is more effective for all readers.

    Structured Literacy instruction is marked by several elements:

    Phonology. Phonology is the study of sound structure of spoken words and is a critical element of Structured Language instruction. Phonological awareness includes rhyming, counting words in spoken sentence, and clapping syllables in spoken words. An important aspect of phonological awareness is phonemic awareness or the ability to segment words into their component sounds, which are called phonemes.

    Sound-Symbol Association. Once students have developed the awareness of phonemes of spoken language, they must learn how to map the phonemes to symbols or printed letters. Sound-symbol association must be taught and mastered in two directions: visual to auditory (reading) and auditory to visual (spelling). Additionally, students must master the blending of sounds and letters into words as well as the segmenting of whole words into the individual sounds.

    Syllable Instruction. A syllable is a unit of oral or written language with one vowel sound. Instruction includes teaching of the six basic syllable types in the English language: closed, vowel-consonant-e, open, consonant-le, r-controlled, and vowel pair. Knowledge of syllable types is an important organizing idea. By knowing the syllable type, the reader can better determine the sound of the vowel in the syllable.

    Morphology. A morpheme is the smallest unit of meaning in the language. The Structured Literacy curriculum includes the study of base words, roots, prefixes, and suffixes. The word instructor, for example, contains the root struct, which means to build, the prefix in, which means in or into, and the suffix or, which means one who. An instructor is one who builds knowledge in his or her students.

    Syntax. Syntax is the set of principles that dictate the sequence and function of words in a sentence in order to convey meaning. This includes grammar, sentence variation, and the mechanics of language.

    Semantics. Semantics is that aspect of language concerned with meaning. The curriculum (from the beginning) must include instruction in the comprehension of written language.

    Structured Literacy is distinctive in the principles that guide how critical elements are taught:

    Systematic and Cumulative. Structured Literacy instruction is systematic and cumulative. Systematic means that the organization of material follows the logical order of the language. The sequence must begin with the easiest and most basic concepts and elements and progress methodically to more difficult concepts and elements. Cumulative means each step must be based on concepts previously learned.

    Explicit Instruction. Structured Literacy instruction requires the deliberate teaching of all concepts with continuous student-teacher interaction. It is not assumed that students will naturally deduce these concepts on their own.

    Diagnostic Teaching. The teacher must be adept at individualized instruction. That is instruction that meets a student’s needs. The instruction is based on careful and continuous assessment, both informally (for example, observation) and formally (for example, with standardized measures. The content presented must be mastered to the degree of automaticity. Automaticity is critical to freeing all the student’s attention and cognitive resources for comprehension and expression.


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