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What Is Dyslexia?

Is your child is verbally able but struggles to show it in writing? Do reading and spelling levels not reflect verbal ability?

The following checklist may be helpful. If your child has some or all of the difficulties listed below, they may be dyslexic. A good first step is to discuss your concerns with the Special Educational Needs Coordinator (SENCO) at school.

 Dyslexia Checklist:

 Good orally but struggles to get it down on paper  
 Confuses left, right, up, down  
 Needs extra thinking time to process verbal information  
 Difficulty getting started with written work  
 Difficulty ordering and sequencing written work or oral accounts  
 When writing- uses words they can spell not their true vocabulary  
 Poor handwriting; doesn't start at the margin; lots of crossing out  
 Reverses letters or numbers e.g. b and d or 2 and 5;  
 When spelling - the right letters in a word but in the wrong order  
 Slow reading - struggles to sound out words; guesses words  
 Can read the 'big' words but confuses small ones  
 Tends to be a whole word reader  
 Poor progress with phonics  
 Can't remember the right letter for sound or sound for letter  
 Struggles to learn common sequences e.g. days of the week or times tables  
 Poor short term memory - forgets instructions  
 Poor organisation - forgets and loses things  


What is Dyslexia?

"Dyslexia is a learning difficulty that primarily affects the skills involved in accurate and
fluent word reading and spelling.

  • Characteristic features of dyslexia are difficulties in phonological awareness, verbal memory and verbal processing speed.
  • Dyslexia occurs across the range of intellectual abilities.
  • It is best thought of as a continuum, not a distinct category, and there are no clear cut-off points.
  • Co-occuring difficulties may be seen in aspects of language, motor co-ordination, mental calculation, concentration and personal organisation, but these are not, by themselves, markers of dyslexia.
  • A good indication of the severity and persistence of dyslexia difficulties can be gained by examining how the individual responds or has responded to well-founded intervention."

Source: The Rose Report 2009, Pg 29 Identifying and Teaching Children and Young People with Dyslexia and Literacy Difficulties.


As the parentof a dyslexic child, I know that it can be worrying for parents when their child's progress does not appear to reflect their ability. An assessment for dyslexia can help to identify if dyslexia or some other difficulty is a barrier to achieving their potential. It helps schools to work with your child in the way that suits their learning style.

There are many successful dyslexics who have learnt to manage their difficulties and use their strengths to be successfful in many fields. Many students find it reassuring to know that there is a reason for their difficulty with reading and writing and for their strength in other areas such as Art, Design, Sport or Music.

Star SEN offers assessment for Dyslexia. Contact for details.

Once diagnosed, Dyslexia can be mananged by making reasonable adjustments in school.


We are always happy to discuss which of our
services will meet your needs.