Next week is Dyslexia Awareness Week, and a lot of seminars are going to be held internationally where dyslexic people share their experiences with others. One of the ways to cope with dyslexia is to have a positive and even humorous attitude about it. One popular story told at such seminars is that Andy Warhol was dyslexic, and
when he said everybody is entitled to 15 minutes of fame he really meant 51 minutes. One of such seminars from the last year had a big banner saying
"If you are a dyslexic who can't laugh at yourself... get a file!"
Photoshop how the world would be different if dyslexia ruled. Change letter sequence in company names, books, show "dyslexic" newspapers and magazines, reflect how movies would be different if dyslexic people wrote movie titles and scripts. These are just some examples. Vahe nuf!
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This contest is fueled by the following news: Dyslexia (from the Greek. Dys "Difficulty with" and the Greek. lexis — "words" or "dictionary") is a dysfunction of reading due to the dysfunction or underdevelopment of some areas of the cerebral cortex. Reading is slowed down, guessing with phonetic distortions and misunderstanding of the read material. It is rarely seen in girls (up to 10%) and more often in boys, though many people think that the girls are more diligent and can hide their deficiency. Many people suffering from dyslexia have achieved popularity and recognition of both their contemporaries and descendants, for example: Leonardo da Vinci, Winston Churchill, Thomas Alva Edison, Jackie Stewart, George Bush, Ooze Osborne Paul Okinfold, Richard Branson, Albert Einstein, Guy Ritchie, Orlando Bloom, Lindsay Wagner, Michael Dudikoff, Salma Hayek, Keri Natalie.
Forms of dyslexia and dysgraphia:
Several approaches to the classification of dysgraphia and dyslexia exist in modern logopedics (speech therapy). No standard classification exists and in practice, speech therapists stick to various causes of defects in reading and writing and learning problems, more often relying on the works of senior specialists, who also belonged to the same scientific school.
Phonetic dyslexia and dysgraphia:
The most often found form is phonetic dyslexia and dysgraphia (traditionally termed as acoustic). It is described under different names practically by all authors. In this form of dysgraphia, it is difficult for children to hear the sound structure of a word.
They are disoriented in the phonation of words, confused between the sounds and merge words with each other. Speech is badly perceived. For correct letter recognition, it is necessary to have a fine auditory differentiation of sounds and analyze all acoustic meaning-distinctive features of sound. Phonetic dysgraphia appears while writing the alphabet, which have phonetically similar soundings. The child writes what ever he heard but not what is told to him. The most common mistake is the change of vowels even in accented condition. The child understands something correctly and something approximately. Difficulties arise in mastering the proper spelling as the child does not appreciate the changes in sound on the grammatical change of the words, does not do the necessary abstracts and does not sense the word links. Mistakes are noticed even during reading: children confuse letters, omit consonants in composition and rearrange syllables and read by guessing.
Optical dyslexia and dysgraphia:
Optical dyslexia and dysgraphia (visual in another term) is caused by the instability of visual impressions and representations. In order to learn to read and write, letter vision – alphabetic gnosis is necessary. Each letter differs from other letters, first of all, by its conventionality and is not at all connected, in regard to meaning, with the sound, which it represents. In the history of mankind, letters have got such great value, that a special area is responsible for the letter recognition in the left hemisphere of the brain. The disorder of alphabetic gnosis and their spatial representations appear in difficulties in mastering the alphabet and their replacements and distortions while reading and writing. The alphabet, which is identical with respect to graphical representation, and distinguished by additional elements and also alphabets, consisting of identical elements but positioned differently in space, are confused and interchanged. Children, for whom it is difficult to remember the letter visually, can invert the letter, skip or add an extra hook. The mirror image of letters is found in optical dysgraphia. The mirror image is more often found in left-handers, who can read, write and copy the letter, digit or a word equally in any direction.
Secondary (nonspecific) dyslexia and dysgraphia:
All these kinds of dysgraphia are primary since they are caused by a disorder of one of the basic preconditions for written speech. The distinctive feature of secondary disorders of reading and writing is the absence of specific preconditions to them. Such children easily differentiate phonemes, are oriented in sound-alphabetic analysis of a word, recognize difficult visual images and do not have restrictions in movements. The essential role in the occurrence of secondary dyslexia and dysgraphia is played by a concentration deficiency, switching and attention allocation. Bad hearing-speech memory prevents in the remembrance of read or dictated text and the correct reproduction of it. The speed of the activity has a special significance during reading and writing. Children, who for any reasons, cannot write and read at the set speed, hurry up to complete the task and commit varied mistakes. It is possible to think, that they possess all kinds of dysgraphia and dyslexia immediately. However, at a slower speed, these children read and write fairly well.
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