What is Dyslexia?

Dyslexia is an under-reported disability, an inheritable neurological condition that affects language acquisition, processing and decoding. Up to 20% of the U.S. population has learning disorders, and 80% of these people, many of them children, have varying degrees of reading disorders that qualify as dyslexia (National Institutes of Health estimate). Dyslexia is a disability in learning, not in intelligence, and afflicts girls and boys nearly equally. It is a lifelong condition. Although incurable, it can be managed successfully. Most importantly, with early detection and treatment, children with dyslexia can learn and succeed academically.

Children with dyslexia are typically highly creative and intuitive, and are excellent hands-on learners. Some of the world’s most famous artists, innovators and leaders were and are dyslexic, including Leonardo daVinci, Albert Einstein, Thomas Edison, Agatha Christie, William Hewlitt, Winston Churchill, Tom Cruise, Cher, Jay Leno, and Charles Schwab.

According to the International Dyslexia Association (2002),

Dyslexia is a specific learning disability that is neurological in origin. It is characterized by difficulties with accurate and/or fluent word recognition and by poor spelling and decoding abilities. These difficulties typically result from a deficit in the phonological component of language that is often unexpected in relation to other cognitive abilities and the provision of effective classroom instruction. Secondary consequences may include problems in reading comprehension and reduced reading experience that can impede the growth of vocabulary and background knowledge.

Adopted by the Board of Directors, International Dyslexia Association, November 12, 2002.

What is the treatment for dyslexia?

The treatment is specialized reading instruction to meet the needs of children with dyslexia. It meets the criteria set by the Every Student Succeeds Act (2015) and addresses all the core deficits of dyslexia. Our Center offers one hour lessons, two days a week for the approximately two years it takes to complete all levels of the program.

The Multisensory Structured Language Education instruction used at our center is based on an Orton-Gillingham approach. This approach refers to the work of neurologist Samuel Orton and the educator and psychologist Anna Gillingham. Both were pioneers in the field and most Multisensory Structured Language techniques can trace their roots back to the work of Orton and Gillingham. To learn more about the Orton-Gillingham approach, click here.

Common features include:  Simultaneous, multisensory instruction; Systematic and Cumulative; Direct Instruction; Diagnostic Teaching; Synthetic and Analytic Instruction; Success-Oriented