Dyslexia - Symptoms
dyslexia vary depending on age. If your child has one
or two of the signs, it does not mean that he or she has dyslexia, but having
several of the signs listed below may mean that your child should be
A preschool-age child may:
- Talk later than most
- Have more difficulty than other children pronouncing
words. For example, the child may read aloud "mawn lower" instead of "lawn
- Be slow to add new vocabulary words and be unable to recall
the right word.
- Have trouble learning the alphabet, numbers, days
of the week, colors, shapes, how to spell, and how to write his or her
- Have difficulty reciting common nursery rhymes or rhyming
words. For example, the child may not be able to think of words that rhyme with
the word "boy," such as "joy" or "toy."
- Be slow to develop fine
motor skills. For example, your child may take longer than others of the same
age to learn how to hold a pencil in the writing position, use buttons and
zippers, and brush his or her teeth.
- Have difficulty separating
sounds in words and blending sounds to make words.
Kindergarten through grade 4
Children in kindergarten through fourth grade may:
- Have difficulty reading single words that are
not surrounded by other words.
- Be slow to learn the connection
between letters and sounds.
- Confuse small words such as "at" and
"to," or "does" and "goes."
- Make consistent reading and spelling
- Letter reversals such as "d" for "b."
- Word reversals such as "tip" for "pit."
such as "m" and "w" and "u" and "n."
- Transpositions such as "felt"
- Substitutions such as "house" and "home."
Grades 5 through 8
Children in fifth through eighth grade may:
- Read at a lower level than
- Reverse letter sequence such as "soiled" for "solid,"
"left" for "felt."
- Be slow to recognize and learn prefixes,
suffixes, root words, and other reading and spelling
- Have difficulty spelling, and he or she may spell the
same word differently on the same page.
- Avoid reading
- Have trouble with word problems in math.
with difficulty or have illegible handwriting. His or her pencil grip may be
awkward, fistlike, or tight.
- Avoid writing.
- Have slow
or poor recall of facts.
High school and college
Students in high school and college may:
- Read very slowly with many
- Continue to spell incorrectly, or frequently spell the
same word differently in a single piece of writing.
- Avoid tests
that require reading and writing, and procrastinate on reading and writing
- Have trouble preparing summaries and outlines for
- Work intensely on reading and writing
- Have poor memory skills and complete assigned work more
slowly than expected.
- Have an inadequate vocabulary and be unable
to store much information from reading.
Adults with dyslexia may:
- Hide reading problems.
poorly or rely on others to spell for them.
- Avoid writing or not be
able to write at all.
- Be very competent in oral
- Rely on memory rather than on reading
- Have good "people" skills and be very good at
"reading" people (intuitive).
- Have spatial thinking skills.
Examples of professionals who need spatial thinking abilities include
engineers, architects, designers, artists and craftspeople, mathematicians,
physicists, physicians (especially orthopedists, surgeons), and
- Often work in a job that is well below their
- Have difficulty with planning and
- Be entrepreneurs, although lowered reading skills may result in
difficulty maintaining a successful business.