What is Dyslexia?
The British Dyslexia Association says:
Dyslexia is best described as a combination of abilities and difficulties that affect the learning process in one or more of reading, spelling and writing. Accompanying weaknesses may be identified in areas of speed of processing, short term memory, sequencing and organisation, auditory and/or visual perception, spoken language and motor skills. It is particularly related to mastering and using written language, which may include alphabetic, numeric and musical notation.
The Dyslexia Foundation of New Zealand says:
Dyslexia is a alternative way of thinking that may affect one in ten New Zealanders. Dyslexics think predominantly in pictures, not with the sound of words. Some research indicates that dyslexia runs in families. A young child with this propensity naturally specialises in picture thinking. Picture thinking is many times faster and offers many advantages over word thinking. Our education system has been designed primarily for word thinkers not picture thinkers. This creates many challenges for both the education system and dyslexic individuals. Being dyslexic is both a gift and a challenge!
What Dyslexia is not?
Dyslexia is not a disease or an illness. Dyslexia is not caused by brain or nerve damage, eye or inner ear defects. Being dyslexic does not mean that you or your child should be labelled as “slow to learn, not trying hard enough, suffering from learned helplessness”.
Dyslexia - The Hidden Gift
The dyslexic, however, has a great gift. Their picture thinking ability is often greatly enhanced and as a result they possess skills, which enable them to excel in a variety of fields.
To put dyslexia in context, some inspirational famous dyslexics are Sir Richard Taylor (Weta Workshop), Richard Branson, Orlando Bloom, Albert Einstein, Leonardo da Vinci, Winston Churchill, Walt Disney, Alexander Graham Bell and Thomas Edison to name a few.
Some famous dyslexics