Dyslexia is based in the brain; the brains of non-readers do not make the same connections between sounds and symbols as the brains of readers. In some ways, this is a huge benefit. Non-readers are more creative; they think "outside the box" because their brains do not recognize the box. In other ways, this is a huge drawback, as so much of our current knowledge is handed down through reading (whether in a book or online) and reading is essential in almost every aspect of life, from passing a test at school to filling out a job application.
It doesn't help to tell a child they are weird, stupid or not trying hard enough. Most children with dyslexia try very hard; they want to fit in. They may find their own work-arounds for reading or disguising their inability to read, but those usually start failing them around third grade.
It doesn't help to assign the child to a slower reading group or to read out loud to them or to buy them special books--all of these are good choices; they simply won't help all by themselves.
What does help is specialized one-on-one multisensory tutoring or enrollment in a school that specializes in teaching children with dyslexia. In the Monadnock area, Windy Row is the only nonprofit that offers specialized, one-on-one tutoring after school, twice a week. Since 2009, we have helped 15-20 children every year to become readers. We know there are more children out there who cannot read (1 in 20 children has dyslexia) and who could use our specialized program.
One of the best ways to help non-readers--children with dyslexia or other reading challenges--is to recommend a call or email to Windy Row. Many Monadnock Region teachers, pediatricians and concerned family members have done just that. If we aren't the right fit, we will say so. If we are, we will make every effort to ensure that your child can come to Windy Row.
Please remember that your child cannot control reading ability; but your child can learn the techniques that make reading possible. Please contact us today.