Raising and educating kids with dyslexia

Archive for February, 2013

Speech/language screening

preschool reportThe report that I mentioned in my last blog post didn’t take that long to find! Over the years I have had to supply copies of reports related to my children’s testing to neuropsychologists, educators and others and so I have been meticulous about keeping and filing all paperwork. And, as we moved house last summer, I had already eliminated a lot of junk.

At preschool, my daughter received occupational therapy screening and speech/language screening when she was three years old, and again at four years old. Interestingly, even at that young age her strengths and weaknesses were becoming apparent. Although, it is easy to say this with hindsight. For example, the occupational therapy screening highlighted that my daughter demonstrated particular strengths in construction skills. And these skills have continued to be an area of strength throughout her educational testing. In terms of weakness, the speech/language screening highlighted articulation difficulties with speech sound errors, leaving off word endings i.e. plurals, and omitting some words. Speech and language difficulties fit right in with a diagnosis of dyslexia and these difficulties became more apparent as my daughter got older.

On the report, the speech/language pathologist recommended monitoring and rescreening for speech and language development. I don’t think I followed up with that! In fact, I know I didn’t. I didn’t really take a lot of notice because I thought any speech errors would correct themselves. After all, my daughter was only three years old!

The journey begins

roundabout signI call this post The journey begins but at the beginning I don’t think our family even realized that we were on a journey–with dyslexia! Around nine years ago, when my daughter was in third grade in elementary school (in the USA), she was diagnosed with dyslexia. But, the journey began before that, back in preschool. From that time until third grade, we were going round in circles rather than moving in one direction.

The preschool my daughter attended offered educational testing. I must admit I didn’t really understand the significance of this testing. I was experiencing first child syndrome, if there is such a condition. In other words, I was green about everything. My husband and I had moved from Britain to the USA when our daughter was only six weeks old. Two years in, I was finding my feet in the USA and raising a child, and so we planned to have baby number two, except baby number two turned out to be baby number two and three. (To be correct I should call them baby A and baby B because these were the names given in hospital until we gave them proper names.) So, as I was juggling twins and a toddler and discovering which way was up, my decision on a preschool for my daughter was based on a friend’s recommendation. She was British, had moved to the USA with two children, and had already experienced placing her oldest child in a preschool in the UK and now in the USA. So, in my world she was an expert on everything to do with children and schools. As it turned out, the preschool was a good fit for my daughter. And, they offered educational testing! I thought this was an opportunity to see I had a wonderful bright child who was benefiting from an early start with education. As it turned out, I think the signs of dyslexia were already appearing. I will write about this in my next blog post. But first, I’m off to searching through boxes in the loft and finding that report…