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Dear parent: why your dyslexic child struggles with reading

Written by The Reader, 9th May 2011

Professor Maryanne Wolf

On the Guardian's education blog today, Professor Maryanne Wolf explains, in a letter to parents of children with reading problems, how dyslexic children's brains are organised differently:

It all begins with understanding that reading does not come naturally to human beings. We humans invented literacy, which means it doesn't come for free with our genes like speech and vision. Every brain has to learn it afresh. Learning to read for the brain is a lot like an amateur ringmaster first learning how to organise a three-ring circus. He wants to begin individually and then synchronise all the performances. It only happens after all the separate acts are learned and practised long and well. In childhood, there are three, critical "ring acts" that go into the development of reading: learning about the world of letters; learning about the individual sounds inside of words (which linguists call phonemes); and learning a very great deal about words.

Read it in full here.

Professor Wolf will be speaking at our Reading for Wellbeing Conference on 'The Pleasures and Perils of an Evolving Reading Brain', on Tuesday 17th May, New Brighton, Wirral.

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