Jan 082010
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It’s one week into 2010, and I have managed to finish one book. This week I read The Gift of Dyslexia by Ronald D. Davis. It seems like a strange choice for the first book of the year, but I received it for Christmas and wanted to read it. It probably seems like a strange Christmas gift as well.

Here’s a little background… I began to suspect that my younger son (7 years old) is dyslexic a couple of months ago. It’s been a huge struggle teaching him to read. At first, I just kept reminding myself that everyone has a different timetable for learning to read. Maybe he’s not ready yet. All that stuff. Then I reviewed AVKO and All About Spelling as part of the TOS Homeschool Crew, both of which are targeted towards teaching dyslexics. (Although they are not exclusively for dyslexics.) I read through the signs of dyslexia and realized that my son had most of them. Around the same time I read a blog that recommended The Gift of Dyslexia and added it to my Amazon wishlist. I was a little surprised to get it for Christmas, but it was on my wishlist after all!

The Gift of Dyslexia was not at all what I expected. I’m not sure what I did expect, but the book is about how a dyslexic person becomes disoriented when he is confused. He can train himself to recognize his trigger words and reorient himself. This sentence from the book sums up my thoughts.

If the idea of moving a mental viewpoint around in space sounds far-fetched to you, it’s probably because you aren’t dyslexic. When I first explain the concept to most dyslexics, they inevitably say, "That’s exactly what I do!’

This idea seems not only far-fetched to me, but bizarre. I will hold on to the book and see where else my research leads. Perhaps I will come back to it in the future.

Visit 52 Books in 52 Weeks  and Semicolon –  Saturday Review of Books to see what others are reading.


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  8 Responses to “The Gift of Dyslexia – Week 1”

  1. I might want to read that one myself. I think I'll check my local library first. 🙂

  2. We tried a lot of the techniques from "The Gift" with our son but they never exactly seemed to apply well with his particular style of dyslexia. I'm sure they work with some people, but I definitely wouldn't call it a "one size fits all" solution. The two things that made the absolute most difference for my son (and we tried many, MANY things) were an audio book subscription to the NC Library for the Blind – – he read his favorite books along with the tapes – – and when he was a little older, 6th and 7th grade, the Saxon Phonics intervention program. Now he reads at grade level (actually a little above) and he can finally spell a little bit better than he used to.

  3. My son Zach, six years old, also has dyslexia. I am going to check out that book. Thanks for the recommendation.

  4. Kristin,

    I've been meaning to read this one too, but somehow just haven't. Overcoming Dyslexia by Sally Shaywitz is on my re-read list this year. I did get a lot out of that.

    Debra at http://debrakb.blogspot.com/

  5. That almost sounds like something your ds would want to read or listen to later. Did you ask him about that sentence?

    It's incredible how different each person's brain works. The book sounds interesting, if only because it would give such a radically different point of view.

    Thank you for sharing.

  6. I have to laugh because I just read this book too! I found it very different from what I had expected. Was it just me or did it seem like he was talking more about slight autism than actual dyslexia? My husband is dyslexic and I read quite a lot of the book out loud to him and it sounded like the author was describing something a little different. Anyway, I have done a TON of research on the Orton-Gillingham methods. I plan on combining the true phonics instruction with the multi-sensory learning and see where it goes. Thanks for the post!

  7. Hi there,

    Stumbled across your website, I'm a tutor for dyslexic children. As a post suggested, the Shaywitz book is really recognized as being one of the best in the field. And yes, any Orton-Gillingham program will work, CA is using the Barton program which is something you could do yourself without spending money on a tutor, try their website bartonreading.com. She has podcasts so sit back and watch a 3 hour talk on dyslexia which will probably give you more info on the subject than a book will! This program is intended for parents…good luck with your child. Just remember, the quicker you give him an alternate way of learning to read and spell, the less he will struggle as he grows older…

  8. Hi I have just started a blog regarding my daughters progress with the Lindamood-Bell programme to treat her severe dyslexia. You are welcome to follow along and for what it is worth I would like to share that for the first time my daughter at age 12 is able to read and feels as though her brain is being unlocked. I wish every-one the best of luck with their journe dyslexic children are different in many ways that goes well beyond literacy.

    Happy Easter.


    Anne – Jade's Mum


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