Monday, February 07, 2011

Dyslexia: How Do You Know?

This post is about Hope.  She is my 5 (almost 6) year old.  She has an amazing, loving, caring and fun personality.  We absolutely love her zest for life. 

However, we have been noticing some things about her that we are starting to become concerned about.  She is busy.  Busier then normal kids.  Her teacher last year asked me if she was always busy, even at home.  I had to say yes.  Hope has a hard time sitting still.  It doesn't matter what she is doing, she bounces.  She is constantly wiggling and moving.  It is like she has no control over it...the movement has control over her!

She talks, non-stop.  Her talking doesn't always have a direction, it is just to talk.  She will randomly scream and screech, with no instigation or trigger.  Seriously, imagine sitting in your house, it is fairly quiet, the kids are playing and all of a sudden you hear "AAAAHHHHHH" and it is done and she goes back to whatever she was doing.  Can freak you out sometimes!!

She is so emotionally charged, will cry about the slightest things, and if she knows she has done something wrong she will start to laugh, hysterically sometimes, uncomfortably sometimes.  She has serious speech issues.  Gotta love the 2 year wait list at school for speech therapy...her language skills are above normal for her age, but the speech is so immature.

And this weekend I noticed this:

This is the God Dictionary we made at Sunday school this week. 
This is the front cover.
The directions were to write the alphabet, one letter per page.
She started at the back of the book.
Then the kids were to write a word that describes God.  Every other page
was written backwards, letters and all.
But, on the left pages she wrote all the words in the proper direction.
I had written the words down for her to copy.
Again, the word is backwards, even though she is copying from
my properly written word
And then the proper way again.  It is kind of baffling to me...
Remember, she is also going from the back of the book to the front,
even after I had given very specific directions
She was thrilled to write her name as a descriptive word for God:-)

She got to I.  This was the length of time she could sit still. 
I worked 1:2 with Hope and another child.  She still could not focus on the task.

I worked with Hope and another child, to help them get through the book.  I couldn't believe how much Hope moved.  It took everything in her to sit still, and even when she was writing the words, she was moving, hugging or kissing me the whole time.  She was giggling, complaining, and talking the whole time. 

It really opened my eyes.  We need to figure out how to help her be successful.  She is not reading yet.  We noticed when she was sounding out her words, a capital D was pronounced as a b.  She has a hard time putting all her sounds together.  She can barely make the proper sounds...(and yet there is a 2 year wait).

The other amazing thing she did, which seriously astounded me was...

I had written the word awesome on the paper for the kids to copy from.  I held it up for the kids on the other end of the table to see and Hope was sitting behind the paper.  She was looking at the letters through the paper, backwards, and writing them down in the right order....seriously, who does that at the age of 5???

She is brilliant, talented and amazing.  She sees the world in a whole different way.  The problem is, the world doesn't work in the way that she sees it.  We need to get some help, get a diagnosis, talk to someone...I am just not sure where to start!!


  1. the educational psychologist who works in your school district should be able to do some assessments for you- you might have to request it. Also you can go to your local mental health office- ours is called the Patricia Centre for Family and Youth and they have resources and people who can get you access to testing. Your family doctor can get you to a psychiatrist who can help too. Going through mental health is how we had to start. Ask your family doctor who they suggest you get to start the assessment process, also ask your school. Keep pestering. Like daily until the process gets started. And occupational therapist could also be a huge help in figuring stuff out. Be loud and determined ... I had to be :)

  2. oh and these people might be able to give you advice - The Learning Disability Association of Ontario.

  3. Thanks Tara. I wasn't sure if I should start with the school or with the doctor. Her teacher this year doesn't think anything is wrong, because the classroom is an open style with the kids self directing (which is awesome), so she hasn't noticed an issue...Probably I will go the doctor first begins another journey...