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What to do with reading and spelling weakness?

Dyslexia – what can parents do?

The problem is that this learning disability is often detected only after several years of schooling, so that deficits accumulate. Teasing of classmates, the frustration of a child add to the problems. Because teachers do not respond or are often late, it is good if the parents themselves look closely.

Possible evidence of a learning disability are: The child has begun to speak late and still has a limited understanding of language. In elementary school when reading is often stalled or he slips the lines are all signs. Or add text to the words and swaps them. The twisting of letters – from a b to a p, or a m to a w – and the confusion of vowel and consonant are signs.

Who determines a reading and spelling weakness?

The child and youth psychologists, school psychological services, or specially trained teachers all can. Important is the investigation by an eye doctor who has experience with children with learning disabilities. In addition, parents should go with their child to an ear, nose and throat specialist, the specialist in voice and speech disorders. He cannot only check your hearing, but the sound and speech processing too.

Some cases come only after the primary school. Why?

Good learners often compensate for their disorder, and they may fall only in secondary school. Learning difficulties are then often in foreign languages.

And if the suspicions are confirmed?

Then a therapy is very important. This is not just to catch up the missed material, but also psychologically complex processes, such as a question of how dyslexia affects the family. Parents have an emotional relationship with their child. The constant “We need to practice more!” creates a lot of stress. The therapy provides a space that allows the families air to breathe. And the children learn that they can handle a problem alone.

(Christa Klüfers-Berger, adjunct member of the National Association of dyslexia and dyscalculia Hamburg)


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