Sunday, April 25, 2010

Do You Know Dyslexia?

In preparing for an upcoming project, I came across these YouTube videos worth sharing.

The first one helps to understand what it's like for some students who are dyslexic or challenged with reading disabilities.

The second video reveals how students choose to write words they think they can spell instead of using the words that reflect their vocabulary level.

Finally, this video highlights famous dyslexics and how they were viewed as children.

Does this sound like anyone in your classroom? Do you have any stories of your own to share?


Paul Hamilton said...

Thanks for sharing what you found, Karen. These videos have the power to inform, encourage, and even inspire! --Paul

Ben Foss said...

Great post. In addition to what is highlighted in these videos, I think the social impact of dyslexia is equally important to understand as well. I believe that the loss of engagement with people is the most important limitation – when you have trouble reading, you don’t have access to information which can make it difficult to be part of the conversation in school, at work or even with your friends talking about your favorite sports team. I think because of this, I’ve always found such a connection with other people, like me, who have dyslexia – it’s like an exclusive club that transcends age, gender, occupation, etc. Which is why I believe it is important for people to talk with one another about their experiences, whether you are a person who has dyslexia, or a parent, teacher or friend, to know that you are not alone and there are tools and resources that can help you on your journey.

Karen Janowski said...

Thank you for your contributions. This is such an important point as well. I know that some students also struggle with remembering names which can be embarrassing and isolating. I also addressed the issue of the"hidden curriculum" in a previous blog post.
It's important for parents and teachers to be aware of these issues and to support students as you suggest.
I'm curious to know how do you connect with others with learning disabilities?

Ben Foss said...

Thanks for your reply, Karen. There are a few online forums that I like: I founded an organization called Headstrong (, which has a community site that has some good comments and a film that tells the story of learning disabilities really well. The forum also has some good posts ( Additionally, Project Eye to Eye ( is a great mentoring program that pairs college-aged students with learning disabilities with younger children with learning disabilities. For face-to-face conversations, Education Revolution is a great event to attend; it is held in April each year and run by the Parent Education Network in the Bay area. (