Reading Difficulties and Dyslexia

TEENAGERS

Reading Difficulties and Dyslexia

Dyslexia is a specific learning difficulty where by some children find it difficult to learn to read, write and spell well. It is due inefficient information processing, particularly in the area of phonological (sounds of letters and words) processing. It is more complicated than simply confusing or transposing letters, for example mistaking ”b” and “d.” Difficulties in short term or working memory may also exist, in addition to organisational, sequencing and motor skill difficulties.

Sarah is considered to be Dyslexic

Sarah is 17 now and was having difficulties at school. She worked very hard at her studies and achieved a good Junior Cert. Her mother describes how she spent many hours studying and that she had a home tutor once a week to help her with reading and school work. While Sarah can read and reads quickl...

Sarah is 17 now and was having difficulties at school. She worked very hard at her studies and achieved a good Junior Cert. Her mother describes how she spent many hours studying and that she had a home tutor once a week to help her with reading and school work. While Sarah can read and reads quickly she often does not understand what she is reading. Her comprehension is not good and her mother spends time every evening helping her with her home work.

Sarah had a psychological assessment at the end of first year and she was considered to be Dyslexic.

Sarah’s mother and father came to a Talk at Cluas and later arranged an assessment. At this assessment it was clear that Sarah had significant Auditory Processing Difficulties. The information she was processing in the classroom was not always accurate or processed quickly. Sarah was having difficulties listening in a noisy classroom and having difficulties with competing sounds. This led to difficulties with short term memory, resulting in difficulties with taking down homework and reading comprehension.

The effort she had to make in trying to understand the written word was exhausting and consequently she did not like reading.

Sarah also had difficulties when she was with a group of her peers in that she found it difficult to keep up with the conversation. She has learned over time that it is best to say very little as she is likely to say something that shows she is not following the conversation. Sometimes she avoids the group and is delighted that she has one best friend with whom she gets on with very well.

Sarah completed a Cluas Programme of three stages over 3½ months. We could see continuous improvements on her Listening Tests which were carried out seven times during the programme. Three months after completion of the programme Sarah’s progress was reviewed. We repeated the Auditory Processing Tests and each of the tests showed significant improvement.

Sarah said that she found it a lot easier to listen and understand in the class room and that she was beginning to enjoy reading rather than hating it. Sarah’s mother confirmed that homework had become a lot easier, was less ‘traumatic’ and time consuming, and that she was a far happier girl who was easier to live with. Sarah has also said that she still keeps quiet when she is in a group, however she feels more accepted.

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