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hyperlexia or dyslexia-- excellent reader who can't spell
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kcal
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PostPosted: Thu Mar 22, 2012 3:08 pm    Post subject: hyperlexia or dyslexia-- excellent reader who can't spell Reply with quote

My son is in first grade. He has been reading since he was 4. I taught my NT son to read at 4 and I tried to teach him the same way, but he never seemed to care or pay attention. I spent probably only 1/4 of the time teaching him as my NT son. One day I just gave up and stopped teaching him, and to my surprise he brought me a short book and read the whole thing to me.

He is an excellent reader, but does have trouble figuring out the overall main idea. He can tell you all the details and even details in the illustration, and even answer why questions, and can remember this stuff weeks after being asked, but can't tell you what the main point the author was making. He does not spend all day reading books, but only reads when it seems like useful information to him (will read signs at office building to find correct place to go). I can't tell you what his reading level is because when his teacher tests him she finds him giggling as he purposefully chooses the wrong answers to make the sentence funny. Sometimes when he reads out loud he will say the wrong word but the wrong word will have the same beginning and ending letters of the word written. Sometimes when he reads, he doesn't read the sentence word for word but summarizes it as he is reading out loud. He loves words. He called the lifeguards at the pool "imbeciles", and likes to make up words ("oh, buckelpronk") and likes to change words to songs to make them funny or to be about Batman.

He is having a horrible time with spelling. He can't seem to follow spelling patterns. Even though he can read "quick" and I tell him repeatedly that Q is followed by U, he spells it "Qwick". "Use" is "Uze". Sometimes he puts in random "e"'s, and sometimes he flips letters. Sometimes he can spell a word correctly all week, and then spell it wrong on his test-- he is not consistent in the way he spells a word. He also has a hard time with place value-- he has a hard time telling the difference between 18 and 81, but once the numbers are there he can add them pretty well. I used to think these were more handwriting issues, but now his handwriting has improved so much that you can read it. He used to put things together (snap circuits, legos) upside down or sideways compared to directions, but now he can do these things just fine after some eye tracking/focusing issues have been resolved through OT. His teacher could throw a dart at the grading chart and come up with the same grades he makes-- sometimes 100, sometimes 50, and anything between for all subjects with the exception of reading, which is high fairly consistently.

Is is possible to be dyslexic but to read well? Is this more ADHD and just not paying attention?
Any ideas? Any ideas on testing--- what kind of testing to request and where to get it?
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krex
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PostPosted: Thu Mar 22, 2012 3:55 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I'm afraid I don't have any solutions but have had the same issues my whole life . I never realized that this was a real thing....avid readers who can't spell, until I met other aspies . I do think that I was perhaps "meant" to be dyslexic but that some how my brain found a different way to make sense of the symbols(letters) that make up words .

I do still see numbers transposed but with years of reading I believe that my brain learned to see words as not individual groups of letters but as shapes (length of word) + consonants+context of the sentence . Probably more complex then that but point is that I never seem to know what or where vowels go . If it were not for spell check and my BF helping me spell some words I couldn't write some of this .

I think the thing that has helped me the most is practicing writing using spell check . I would recommend that sooner the better , he get some kind of ipad with spell check because even though I still make many spelling mistakes, every time I see a word underlined in red it helps me learn how to spell that word ....even though it may take doing it wrong 1,000 times before it stays with me .
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kcal
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PostPosted: Thu Mar 22, 2012 4:02 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

interesting that you mention vowels... I forgot to mention that in Kinder he would just leave out vowels, so it looked like some teenagers text message... he puts vowels in now because he knows he has to, but vowels are definitely what give him the most trouble.... the psychologist that diagnosed him told me that it sounded like he taught himself to read by the methods that they use to teach speedreading... I don't really know how, because I taught him by phonics and word families..

I just can't get over it... you sound exactly like my son... thanks for tip with spell check... this is excellent idea-- he has word processor at school with no spell check-- maybe I can ask if he can bring a laptop to use for creative writing assignments...
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krex
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PostPosted: Thu Mar 22, 2012 4:46 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I have always been a fast reader and I'm sure I had the same kind of lessons in reading but I think my brain had already remapped itself when it couldn't solve the reading problem the way it was being taught to me . When I am reading it is like watching a movie, I need to read fast enough to make the next picture/frame come into focus or I lose the plot of what I am reading . It would be like making someone watch a movie frame by frame....to slow makes no sense . This seems to actually improve my over all comprehension of the text/story but I often don't absorb long, unfamiliar words or names of characters . I don't naturally hear words when I am reading, I see pictures or feel emotions <-------(like some people do listening to music) .

Your son is probably to young for this to matter but I will tell you that this had a very important and negative effect on me in that I avoided the sciences....one of my loves, because I had problems remembering/reading the Greek and Latin terms often used in science . I would suggest that if he does show an interest in the sciences that you make him a word board where he can see and practice those words . I know that Latin is no longer taught in most schools but so may words we use have prefix and suffix of Latin . I think it is a good tool for every kid but especially some one struggling with spelling, to have a list of these and their meaning . So many science terms are actually "bits of stuck together Greek/latin" . )also , keep in mind that this might also cause some problems when trying to learn foreign languages . Some aspies excel at spelling and foreign languages but some of us struggle with it more then normal .

I'm wishing you both luck . The up-side of this struggle is that his brain had the capacity to rewire itself to overcome the kind of dyslexia that prevents so many from reading, saying that books saved my life on more then one occasion is not an over statement .
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Covuschik
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PostPosted: Thu Mar 22, 2012 4:57 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

My 11 year old aspie is like that - amazingly high reading level but can't spell at all. He does have processing based dysgraphia, but not dyslexia. When he dictates to someone typing, he can correct misspellings, but not when he writes himself. He's limited to about 10-12 words that he can produce independently and has accommodations for dictation/oral answers/less written work. He still writes letters and even numbers backwards occasionally.

It might be something to look into. Google dysgraphia.

Typically it's DX'd by an OT, but I've found that our school district OT eval was less than useful. The writing part consisted of, "Copy this sentence that's written on this paper" which is a totally different from performing all of the individual processing steps that make up writing a sentence. Copying is just a visual and motor task, an area where my guy doesn't have major issues. I also had to explain what stimming was to an OT. Embarassing.

My advice is to *show* him those basic spelling rules - don't just tell him. Do tactile stuff, spell out the letter combinations in LEGO bricks (or whatever else he's really into), write them in sand/dirt. Type them on the computer together. These aren't things that we did, but I think they would have helped. Most schools now don't even teach spelling beyond first grade - most schools use the "whole language approach" which assumes that kids naturally pick up these rules as they progress through the grades. I would hazard to guess that they're already pushing phonics and I know that with my own son, now he spells everything phonetically.

Like krex, my guy has gotten good at using spellcheck and I think he's learned a lot from using that.

We've got a lot of made up words here too. Most kind of stick around for a few weeks and then change. And I agree - those lifeguards *are* imbeciles. :p
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zette
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PostPosted: Thu Mar 22, 2012 6:37 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

You might see if he likes Reading Eggspress for extra practice in reading comprehension. My son is using the Reading Eggs phonics program by the same company, and they really seem to have a knack for making the lessons funny and entertaining. There is also a Spelling Vault that has 96 spelling lessons -- we haven't tried it yet, but you get access to all the programs for one price with the subscription.
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kcal
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PostPosted: Thu Mar 22, 2012 8:31 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

krex-- I don't know for sure, but I am willing to bet that he needs to convert stories to movies in his head... he has had attention issues which I have found out are him making up Batman movies in his head... when he was smaller he used to pace around mumbling what the characters were saying as he kind of had a blank stare and his preschool teacher is actually the one who told me that it is like he can see movies in his head... one day he told me he had an i-phone in his brain so he never had to be bored.... anyways, tried several things with attention, and the one thing that worked was telling him to hit "pause" on whatever was in his brain....this is all so much different than how my brain works (although I am very visual) and I kind of go back and forth on whether this is how it is for him or not... do you tend to read and remember things as movies or still pictures?

he does love science and I have been worried about the math part of it... thank you for mentioning the greek and latin roots... I was a science major in college, but I had not even thought of that because I took Latin so the words would be second nature to me....

Covuschik-- this is also something to look into... oddly enough just last night he grabbed a pencil in each hand and started writing his spelling words two letters at a time... maybe he can't get the letters out fast enough? I will test him with the typing just like you said... he just started being able to copy something legibly, so perhaps that was covering up another issue... I used to have the foam letters for the bathtub, but threw them out when he started reading... back to the store, worth a try

zette-- thanks, worth a try too-- funny always helps
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MMJMOM
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PostPosted: Fri Mar 23, 2012 6:29 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

My son has similar issues, he can read beautifully...but has issues spelling. He adds letters to words that dont belong, and has issues recalling which vowels to use in words. But he has ZERO issues reading, and can read beautifully for a 6yo. Interestingly enough, he has no issues with numbers, he doesnt write letters backward, etc...it seems to be just with recalling the letters to spell things. Sometimes he will spell a wrd out loud and be correct, but write different letters then he said out loud. That one baffles me, and him too casue when I draw his attention to it, he looks completely perplexed as to how or why he wrote the wrong letters.

The vowel thing gets me the most, say he is writing the word FROG. He may sound it out, but write FRAG. He will then read it as FROG. But if I ask him to sound out each letter he wrote, he will say FRAG. And then he will know he made an error and correct it.

He also will read sentences and either add words that dont exist or sumarise what is written rather then read it word for word. With new words he will say any and every word that looks similar rather then try to sound it out phonetically. He can sound it out but I have to remind him to do so, it is as if his default is to try and recall a word that he already knows that looks similar to the new word.
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PostPosted: Fri Mar 23, 2012 9:38 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Sorry, this may sound daft, but you said your son is in first grade. How old does that make him? I'm assuming he's no more than 6 or 7 anyway. Is he falling behind? Most kids of that age are just getting to grips with reading and spelling. It's pretty standard for a young child, who is just learning. They don't test for dyslexia until about 7 here. Mainly because, prior to that age, most kids make weird errors. I really would not be worried about it at this stage, if I were you.

My daughter is 6 and is probably a bit like your son with spelling. She spells words weirdly, if she doesn't already know them, e.g. boy might be spelt boiee, or something like that. She also changes words in her books, to make them funny or more interesting, which proves to me that she really understands what she's reading. I'm not in the least bit worried, neither are her teachers, as she's doing really well with her reading (just above average and she's one of the youngest in the class). There's no doubt in my mind that she'll get there.

If you think he might have hyperlexia, it may not be a big deal either. I taught myself to read at 3 and have a pre-occupation with letters and numbers. I have a good understanding of what I read and always have done. I think it's possible to have the positives of hyperlexia minus the negatives (or they are undetectable). I can spell very well and have done since I was about 8 or 9, but I doubt that would have been the case at your son's age. I can still remember, when I was about 7, sitting in class trying to think of how to spell 'new'; it seemed like hours. By the following year, I could have entered spelling bees (if we had them here). But, I do have concentration problems and it's very rare for me to read a novel.
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Last edited by Mummy_of_Peanut on Fri Mar 23, 2012 9:55 am; edited 1 time in total
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kcal
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PostPosted: Fri Mar 23, 2012 9:46 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

MMJMOM-- there must be more of us out there then, and someone must have answers as to how to make things easier... my son does have some issues with backwards letters and numbers but he has made a lot of progress with OT... but as far as reading sounds just like your son-- he will guess the word first but can go back and sound it out IF I remind him; if I don't remind him he is more likely to just keep guessing-- I am beginning to wonder if he has two issues and one is masking the other...
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MMJMOM
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PostPosted: Fri Mar 23, 2012 12:43 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

kcal,

I think so myself! There has to be a name for this! I dont have issues with the school casue he is homeschooled. SO when we are reading I am right there to help him, otherwise in a class of 28 I am sure he would fall behind.

Also, it can be a simple word or even his name where he says the letters but writes different ones, and he looks so perplexed when he looks at what he wrote. I would think it was age appropriate but I have actually asked many of my frineds with NT kids and none have experienced eactly waht you and I and a few others here wrote. ALSO he participated in a study and the tester noted these things and told me they are abnormal for his age. Most kids will try to sound out a new word, not my son he will rapid fire recall every word he knows with the similar letters hoping to hit on the right word!
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nebrets
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PostPosted: Fri Mar 23, 2012 1:14 pm    Post subject: Reading and Spelling Reply with quote

I was reading by the time I was three, and in the first grade was reading third grade books, but I failed spelling every year through the sixth grade (last year I had spelling tests). I worked hard in spelling, and I did practices test at home every night, and I would have to copy my words 10 times every night, and an extra 10 times if I missed them on the practice test. I did not miss the same words every night, and when I was in high school I could misspell the same word three or more different ways in the same paper. I still only spell at about a 7th grade level even though I have graduated from college and have done well in graduate school. Spell check and google are my good friends for checking spelling.

As for understanding the "big picture" while reading, I would not be too concerned at this time. It may be because he focuses on details first, and as he gets older he will be better able to put the pieces together, although he may always struggle a little with seeing the overall idea. It may help if he has books that he is interested in. I "see" pictures when I read, and in fiction books I almost play out a movie in my mind while I read. This caused me to not like many movies based off of books because they were different than what I "saw" while reading, the people looked different than in my mind etc. Books you are interested in are easier to form the pictures in your mind, and that can make it easier to conceptualize the big picture.

I have worked with a reading recovery teacher for several years, and the problem you son has with saying the wrong word etc purposely may be boredom or a lack of interest. Some of it may be negative reinforcement, he gets attention that he likes when he messes up in a "funny" way. The best thing to do would be to ignore him when he messes up in this way, and/or to play games where he is only rewarded for the correct answers he gives. If you were just testing what words he knew, play a flash card game and the words he says correctly he gets, and the words he gets wrong you (or the teacher) get. He does not "win" or get the same attention unless he gets "x" number of words correct. This will make positive reinforcement easier and encourage him to preform the task correctly, only missing the words that he does not know, instead of missing the words purposefully even if he knows them.
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LittleBlackCat
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PostPosted: Fri Mar 23, 2012 8:54 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I tend to agree with Mummy of Peanut and would not be too concerned so early in your son's education. My daughter (now 10) has a similar profile. (NB She is not a diagnosed aspie but shows many of the traits.) She picked up reading very, very quickly and easily but her spelling was way behind by comparison. Even now her spelling is not brilliant. But it is where it should be for her age. I think maybe his spelling seems worse than it is because he is so gifted at reading. She was also difficult to assess on her written work at that age, partly due to handwriting issues, and partly due to huge inconsistencies in the quantity and quality of work she produced (although she always demonstrated clear understanding in class discussions). Her teachers have given various explanations for this last point over the years but lately the situation is improving.
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PostPosted: Sun Mar 25, 2012 11:19 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

I have some trouble reading but love to read, and my spelling is horrible...without spell check no one would be able to read what I say. Sometimes it is so bad spell check just gives up on me.
It was in my IEP to use a word processor and spell check throughout school.
When I got to college, that was one of my disability accommodations.
I also have trouble reading signs or ads in that I read the bottom or last word first...then have to read it top to bottom...sometimes it gets scrambled in my brain.
I also skip lines in paragraphs
I also get words mixed around when I talk too.

Also when posters dont use paragraphing...just a wall of text...I usually skip over that post, to hard to read.

As far as the playing word games during tests...LOL I have done the same thing when I was a kid.
I also made up a bunch of words when I was in primary school and even made up their definitions as if they were fact. I also made up stories around the words and what they meant.
I loved to tell fictional stories as a kid...like telling people about pink and purple polka dotted frogs all over my front yard. It would be no surprise that I am now a writer.

Jojo
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