Assuming your student has a normal or
above IQ, you look for the two signs of trouble: overuse of the
right-hemisphere and a poorly operating corpus callosum.
In enormous detail:
of course, you have to be sure you are looking at a real reading
problem, so you want a reading score of some kind and a rough-and-ready
IQ score. If there is a big discrepancy between potential
and production, that's an important clue.
you want to test for use of the right brain in reading. This
is easily accomplished by having a student read a group of
words that have been misspelled, but if pronounced as written,
would be real words. Example: fut, brade, blone, or peze.
(Foot, braid, blown, or peas, in case your own left side needs
jogging!). These "words" are called misspelled
The right hemisphere has terrible trouble with these.
you want to test the state of the corpus callosum. This test
is called Tactile
Localization, or TL. It is easy to do and, if you can
imagine, doesn't cost a penny! How to do TL and the misspelled
homophones tests are described in Diagnostic
you will want a writing sample done from dictation. In an
older student, check for bizarre spelling, omission of small
words and punctuation, misplaced apostrophes, reversed letters
and other odd mistakes. Checkout the before
& after writing samples to get an idea of the problem.
A big discrepancy between potential and production is the most important clue.
are the sentences I use for students at fifth grade or older:
clam sat on the bottom of the ocean.
rushed into the cottage in the nick of time.
gathered in a circle around the campfire and told ghost
has a population of about fifty thousand.
- A conference
was held to determine the future course of action.
your student is intelligent, reads at about half the level
he should, makes mistakes on the misspelled homophones test,
writes as though some of the words originated in Outer Mongolia
and shows signs of a poorly functioning corpus callosum, you've
about little kids? How early can dyslexia be diagnosed? Tactile
localization is not a reliable indicator of dyslexia on
a second or third grader. But his written production is
usually a dead giveaway, as you can see from the samples
I have culled from little students. But hating school, terrible
report cards, and threats to keep back an intelligent child
is a sure sign.
Here are the sentences
I use for second to fourth graders:
must drink her milk.
ants had a picnic on my ham sandwich.
are you two doing here?
flowers have many buds on them.
people come every day to see my father.
a child in second grade still doesn't recognize short vowel
sounds, can't match a letter with its sound, can't identify
the individual sounds in a word in the proper order, seems
otherwise intelligent, and "writes" like the writing samples
in this web site, you may be sure he needs some serious left-hemisphere