You Asked! Question 2

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Q2:  My student is dyslexic.  The IEP team recommendation was for my student to “read more at home” but no evidence-based reading intervention was offered through school.  Will having my student read more at home help his dyslexia?

A:  It depends on what areas your dyslexic child is struggling and what they are reading.  For example, if your dyslexic child is struggling with phonemic awareness and decoding issues, they need to receive an evidence-based multisensorydirect, explicit, structured and sequential approach to reading intervention. Some reading interventions will have a student read “controlled text” passages.  These passages would only include words for decoding skills the student is currently learning. “Controlled text” reading is helpful as it is closely aligned to the evidence-based reading intervention.  Having your child do independent reading that is not aligned with their evidence-based program can cause added confusion for your child and may actually delay their reading progress. “Read more at home” will not teach a dyslexic child how to read.

It should be noted that reading out loud to your child (or providing access to audiobooks) at grade level (or above) is helpful as it exposes your child to grade level content and vocabulary that they would not be exposed to if they are unable to read at grade level.

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You Asked! Answers to your important questions- Question 1

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Q1:  What screening tools can my school use in identifying students who are at risk for dyslexia?

 A:  Children can be screened as early as four years of age for determining whether they are at risk for dyslexia.  Early identification and intervention dramatically improves outcomes for children with dyslexia.

A sample list of assessment tools that professionals may wish to consider using in assessing students for dyslexia is available below. Please note that this list is not exhaustive. See “Screening & Assessment Tools”.

The Arkansas Department of Education addresses screening for dyslexia in its Dyslexia Resource Guide.  Helpful information can be found on pages 19-28 in the attached link to this guide: Arkansas Dyslexia Resource Guide. A downloadable Rapid Naming Screener tool is also available at: Arkansas Rapid Naming Screener.

Mississippi has also created a Dyslexia Screening tool for kindergarten and first grade that can be found at: Mississippi Dyslexia Screener.  A helpful video demonstration of the screener can be found at: Screener Demonstration Video.

The Center for Response to Intervention at American Institutes for Research does an annual review of screening tools that can be found at: Center for RTI Screening Tools Chart.

Downloadable sample list of “Screening and Assessment Tools”

Downloadable General Education Screening for Dyslexia Worksheet for individual school use

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Disclaimer: Please note that DDCA does not officially endorse, represent, or have a legal connection with any of the resources listed above. These are commercially available assessment tools that many teachers and professionals found useful in screening and assessing dyslexia. The list is just a sample and is not meant to be exhaustive.