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Dyslexia - spelling better than reading?

Discussion in 'Special educational needs' started by jocraigie, Nov 9, 2018.

  1. jocraigie

    jocraigie New commenter

    I have just picked up a Y6 tutee for maths and english. he is behind in both - working at around a Y2 level for maths and Y1 for reading. I suspect he is dyslexic so used the placement assessment for alpha and omega in his last session - he didn't get very far before he made errors reading the words but we did all of them as suggested, when it came to spelling he got considerably further before a mistake was made (and not self corrected). This confused me somewhat and made me wonder if there was something else going on. Any suggestions?
  2. balletomane

    balletomane New commenter

    I have seen this in some dyslexic people, but always those who experience visual stress or some kind of visual processing difficulty into the bargain. When they looked at a page the letters would appear to swim or get distorted in front of their eyes, they would make substitutions that are visually similar (reading 'horse' for 'house', for example), or they would struggle to keep their place on the line. Spelling was easier for them because they knew how the words are supposed to be formed - their difficulties with visual stress etc. just meant that they couldn't read them reliably if they saw them in some other text.
  3. moonpenny

    moonpenny Occasional commenter

    Has he got a strong visual memory and is able to remember how the words he could spell look? Are they words he has practiced?

    I’ve come across students who do the above which helps them build up a core of spellings but if they have poor phonological awareness ,they often still have trouble breaking down sounds in an unfamiliar,multi syllabic word.

    Perhaps he’s had more practice memorising the individual spellings using his visual memory than he has with reading individual words ? Eg in weekly spelling tests in class ?
    Flanks likes this.
  4. Flanks

    Flanks Senior commenter

    Actually the reverse is true. Spelling being stronger than reading is an indicator of visual strength and using it to compensate for phonological weakness.

    This can't last for long as the spelling exceptions and irregularities will depend on more secure knowledge of how to form ask the digraphs which can form the 44 phonemes.

    Alpha to omega is good, but doesn't really help to check where the core weakness is. I suggest the precursor intervention which is Active literacy kit, highly structured and effective as an intervention for core literacy knowledge.
    moonpenny likes this.
  5. moonpenny

    moonpenny Occasional commenter

    Good suggestion Flanks

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