Dyslexia in Children

How Do I Know If It’s Dyslexia I’m Dealing With?

If children are anxious and struggle at school, find reading challenging and read slower and without fully comprehending what they read, spell as they hear a word, and have difficulty expressing themselves in writing, chances are that they are visual learners, which we call dyslexic.

That means that they are very bright, creative and often intuitive, but struggle at school and often don’t feel as intelligent as they are.

How do I know if it's dyslexia

Is My Child Dyslexic?

That is the most common question I get asked, especially after assessing a child… which is not surprising, really. I used to ask the same question about my son before I knew anything about dyslexia in children. Like most concerned parents I had the impression that there is something wrong with my son and I was determined to get a label in order to find a solution.

But over time, I formed a very different view about dyslexia in children.

Before my training and working for over 15 years with dyslexic individuals of all ages, I just saw that my son was struggling, thinking differently, obviously not stupid – yet having really poor marks in English and any subject where reading and comprehension was required. His spelling was appalling – I am not sure if he would have been diagnosed with ‘phonological dyslexia’ or ‘visual/surface dyslexia’. Somehow I think he would have fit into both boxes.

The term “phonological dyslexia” refers to a symptom pattern of difficulty with decoding and connecting sounds to symbols. Individuals with that form of dyslexia typically have difficulty sounding out unfamiliar words and do poorly on tests of non-word reading. The term “surface dyslexia” refers to a pattern of difficulty with whole-word recognition. Individuals with that form of dyslexia often spell phonetically and are able to figure out new words, but will not be able to remember or recognize frequently encountered words. Their reading may be slow and laborious (Abigail Marshall, Webmaster DDAI).

The Primary School my son went to never saw a reason for concern. He never had any IQ/ Wechsler/ psychometric assessment/ dyslexia testing/ psychological assessments or tests …  and in hindsight I believe that was rather fortunate. Who knows – it might have sent me on a long merry-go-round of fixing symptoms and phonic training which is similar to torture for many dyslexic children and adults – and with mixed results.

Now, I don’t believe that Dyslexia in children is a learning disability, just a learning difference. Dyslexics are mostly visual learners and although they do struggle in school, they are very bright and creative. 

Nothing needs to be ‘cured’ or ‘fixed’, but it will help them to receive tools to increase their focus and help them understand words that don’t have a picture. ‘Sight words’ which are meant to be the easiest little words that children are learning to read first, are usually culprits for dyslexics – often they have no obvious meaning. Even though the child will be able to read ‘to, for, from, so, by’, but without the necessary picture or meaning, or a different syntax. 

We need to empower children to enable them to become focused and oriented, overcome confusion, shame and frustration, resulting from mistakes and misunderstandings. 

If you want to make sure that dyslexia is the problem your child is dealing with, I’d be happy to see you and your child for an assessment.


Need Help with Dyslexia in Children?

Get a Dyslexia Assessment

If you want to make sure that dyslexia is the problem your child is dealing with, I’d be happy to see you and your child for an assessment. 

These consultations are not testing your child academically, but you will find out:

  • Their learning style
  • Their gifts and challenges
  • Their goals and which challenges they are ready to change
  • Their motivation 
  • The right path at this point in time to help your child move forward

To find out more or to book a one-on-one dyslexia assessment, click on the button below.

If you are uncertain, whether your child fits the dyslexia “label”, click here for a free dyslexia test.


Dyslexia Training Program

If your child is a visual or tactile learner, and shows the motivation and commitment to change,  The One Year School could prove to be the right path.

The One Year School helps with:

— Spelling

— Writing

— Focusing

— Concepts

— Grammar

— Maths


— Reading for Comprehension

The One Year School will support the use of your child’s positive gifts, remove the obstacles which prevent the natural learning process from occurring, and help your child one-on-one and/or in small zoom classes. You can start as soon as you are ready, every day of the year is the right one.

Discover why these bright individuals have difficulty learning, when using traditional methods. We’ll show you how learning can be made easy, enjoyable and ADD can be corrected, DRUG FREE.

To find out more about The One Year School and how it can help overcome dyslexia in children, click the button below. 

What Our Clients with Dyslexia are Saying

Awarded school captain and  won contest
“Hi Barbara, I have finished all my words!!! And guess what, I have become school captain and won the speech contest. Thank you so much for everything.”
Sam - 11 years old

Former Client

Better confidence, spelling and behaviour
Here are the changes I experienced: Isabella’s spelling improved exceptionally, her concentration became more focused, she is learning easier in class and became calmer. Barbara, I’ll add that Isabella’s behaviour is more rational, she very rarely becomes hysterical when stressed but is able to calm herself down or have the sense to remove herself from the stressful situation.

Mother of Isabella

Better confidence, attention and academic results

My son… had problems at school, academically (especially reading and spelling) and with his behaviour. He was put on Ritalin to contain his hyperactivity, but after … 9 months, his personality had changed dramatically, he had no appetite, slept badly and was apathetic. After finishing the course with Barbara, I noticed within two weeks a huge change in his confidence. The teacher also commented at the time about his improved attention span. Within that time, especially 3 – 4 months after starting, a real difference started to set in academically, which reflected in his school report. He started Year 5 in …a new school (who didn’t) notice any learning difficulties or signs of hyperactivity. He gets honours and credits on a regular basis, is very focussed and achieves highly in every aspect. Never went back on Ritalin. We are very happy.”


Mother of Daniel - 9 years old