Parents are often the first to notice that a child has a reading challenge. There are many signs which may appear separately or together. For example, a preschool child might have difficulty:
- Saying the letters in alphabetical order
- Recognizing the letters
- Providing a rhyme for simple words like "cat" or remembering the rhyming words in a nursery rhyme heard over an over
- Pronouncing and remembering new words
- Breaking words apart into sounds (cuh-ah-tuh) or putting the sounds together to make words
A first grader may refuse to read out loud and may not recognize a word even if it already appeared in the same sentence.
When I was a child I had a terrible time sounding out words but I was never dyslexic (I just have no ear for languages or music). So having one of these difficulties may not be a sign of a reading challange.
But listen to your parental instincts. You know your child better than anyone. Dyslexia affects as many as 20% of children and half of those are never identified until they've spent years failing to keep up with their peers and struggling with shame and confusion over their inability to learn to read.
If you have any concerns at all, please info [at] windyrow.org (contact) Windy Row Learning Center. We will be able to reassure you and offer whatever programs and support your child needs.