I was talking with a friend the other day who is passionate about children learning to read. It was a great conversation since I am passionate about that topic as well. But as we said our goodbyes, I was left feeling vaguely dissatisfied, and I had to sit for a while and analyze why this was the case. What finally surfaced was this: sometimes learning to read is not enough for dyslexics.
Learning to read is only a part of the picture for a well-rounded child. Unless any and all other learning challenges are also addressed, the child will struggle needlessly. A child’s education must also include social and emotional learning. Growing up and formal education is a package deal: learning how to function socially and cope with one’s emotions is intertwined with every task required of learners and is just as important as the three Rs.
Nothing bears out the truth of these statements like my own experience. Not very many people know the full scope of my experiences with dyslexia, dysgraphia, dyscalculia, and dyspraxia. My dear friend and fellow author Lois Letchford wanted to take a more in-depth look at the life-long effects I’ve experienced as a result of only having some reading intervention and no support for any other aspects of my struggles. In a two-part interview, I share my dyslexic version of “What Not to Wear.” In other words, “Please don’t let this happen to your kid.”
It’s true that every child needs to learn to read. But sometimes learning to read is not enough for dyslexics. A dyslexic child needs to learn and understand all areas of life, and that includes social and emotional learning.
Please note: the two interview parts aren’t linked, so links to Part 1 and Part 2 are below.
For a thorough discussion of the social and emotional support children with dyslexia require, read my award-winning book, Raising a Child with Dyslexia: What Every Parent Needs to Know, available in softcover, hardcover, eBook, and audio.
And to learn more about how every student best learns to read, I recommend Failing Students or Failing Schools? A Parent’s Guide to Reading Instruction and Intervention, by reading specialist Faith Borkowsky.
Cardboard Box Adventures picture books are great for shared reading and can help parents establish a strong preliteracy foundation for their children. Check out the CBA Catalog for a full list of award-winning picture books, chapter books, and resources for parents and educators. Visit my Amazon author page for more information.