Many parents wonder if their child may have a learning disability when they are in preschool. There are some symptoms that you can look for before children begin learning to read. These include:
- Delayed speech (not speaking any words by the child’s first birthday. Often, they don’t start talking until they are two, two-and-a-half, three, or even older.)
- Mixing up sounds in multi-syllabic words (ex: aminal for animal, bisghetti for spaghetti, hekalopter for helicopter, hangaberg for hamberger, mazageen for magazine, etc.)
- Early stuttering
- Lots of ear infections
- Can’t master tying shoes
- Confusion over left versus right, over versus under, before versus after, and other directionality words and concepts.
- Late to establish a dominant hand
- May switch from right hand to left hand while coloring, writing, or doing any other task. Eventually, the child will usually establish a preferred hand, but it may not be until they are 7 or 8. Even then, they may use one hand for writing, but the other hand for sports.
- Inability to correctly complete phonemic awareness task.
- Despite listening to stories that contain lots of rhyming words, such as Dr. Seuss, cannot tell you words that rhyme with cat or seat by the age of four-and-a-half.
- Difficulty learning the names of the letters or sounds in the alphabet; difficulty writing the alphabet in order.
- Trouble correctly articulating R’s and L’s as well as M’s and N’s. They often have “immature” speech. They may still be saying “wed and gween” instead of “red and green” in second or third grade.
If three of more of these warning signs exist, especially if there is dyslexia or AD/HD in the family tree, the child should be tested for dyslexia when the child becomes five years old. Also, phonemic awareness games and other reading readiness activities should be done daily during the preschool years.
I hope this information helps you in your journey to gather more information on how to best help your child. Feel free to contact me with any further questions. You can also find out about the services I offer at www.dyslexiasolutionsofcolorado.com