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New Hope For Dyslexics

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posted on Feb, 25 2003 @ 04:00 PM
Dyslexia, a reading and language disorder, affects between 5 percent and 10 percent of the population. Sometimes called "word blindness," it is associated with reduced brain activity in a portion of the left half of the brain.

When dyslexic children took part in a program to teach them better reading skills their brains began functioning more like the brains of normal children, a new study reports.

Researchers working at Stanford University report in Tuesday's issue of Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences that they used magnetic resonance imaging to scan the brains of 20 dyslexic children aged 8 to 12 as well as a dozen normal children. The children were asked to perform simple rhyming exercises at the time.

The dyslexic children then took part in an eight-week program of intensive training designed to help them understand the rapidly changing sounds that are the building blocks of language.

The dyslexic youngsters reading skills improved in a number of tests, the researchers said. In addition, the active area of the children's brains changed, becoming much more like that of good readers.

"We see that the brains of these children are remarkably plastic and adaptive, and it makes us hopeful that the best language intervention programs in the future can alter the brains in fundamentally helpful ways," said Stanford psychology professor John Gabrieli.

The next step is to see if commercial reading improvement programs for dyslexics alter the brain as well as the one used in this test, said Elise Temple of Cornell University, lead author of the study.

posted on Feb, 26 2003 @ 03:36 AM

posted on Feb, 26 2003 @ 04:26 AM
Sorry there's no link provided, because that's the whole report. I figured folks might not want a link to re-read, what they've already read.


posted on Feb, 26 2003 @ 06:49 PM
But how much dyslexia can fun be!

posted on Feb, 26 2003 @ 07:19 PM
MidnightDestroyer, I can't comment on how much dyslexia may be fun but as a person who has a mild form of dyslexia myself, I can share some humorous stories from my own life.

I had to go to an address given to me over the phone. I wrote down the address and a brief description of the house, before my girlfriend & I left.

We drove to the street and went up & down it several times, never finding the address Id written down. After giving up and deciding to go eat something, I noticed a house that seemed to match the description of the house that I was looking for. We backed up and when I looked at the house numbers, I noticed something familiar to me. Id written number 861, what I saw on the house was 816 I knew right then that my dyslexia has sabotaged me again. I went to the house, knocked on the door and sure as $hit, the person I was looking opened it.

Its a humorous story, but I find dyslexia a mild annoyance more than a disability. Im much better with a word processor, but when writing with my hand, it can be very hard.

Heres an example from yesterday:

I had to mark student evidence portfolios whilst in class, so I had to fill in an assessment form by hand. I made numerous mistakes, because whilst I see the word spelled correctly in my mind I seem to skip letters when writing it out. For the student assessments at the end, there were loads of crossed out words because the faster I write with my hand, the more times I confuse letters and place them out of order.

Again, its much more frustrating than an actual disability.

Funny tale - but true,

posted on Feb, 26 2003 @ 08:41 PM
My wife has a form of dyslexia...And a sense of humor about it too. I'm glad no offense was taken by my joke.

I don't have dyslexia, but I can understand where it can become a royal pain in the @$$...

Most of the anecdotes & first hand observations of my wife having problems with it tend more towards the 'ol "Homer Simpson's D'Oh!" than being a serious problem.


I hope that such programs designed to help the dyslexic actually work out well.

[Edited on 27-2-2003 by MidnightDStroyer]

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