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Dyslexia symptoms

The Dyslexia Gang Part 3

These are the symptoms and signs of Dyslexia as described by The British Dyslexia Association

Frequently late - occasionally missing important events altogether - and misjudging how long it takes to drive somewhere - yep that's me, unless I set an alarm on my phone to leave really, really early I will be late. I genuinely do not understand where the time goes, you start putting your shoes on, and the next minute you have lost twenty...

Problems with time management - a poor sense of time - find it difficult to plan time - frequently run out of time doing a task or fail to plan enough time for all the things that need to be done for the task to be completed - see above, also note when I thought I could write eighteen courses, edit the same, polish, record the audio for, design the companion sheet for sixteen of the courses, and get them to the website technology type genius lady to get online and pretty in six weeks. And was late delivering, twice.  

Can’t remember numbers - phone numbers, pin numbers, timetables etc - need to write a phone number down immediately to remember it. Again

Poor memory for anything number related like dates and facts - everyone who knows me knows that I say if you don;t see me write it down assume it won't happen.

Trouble understanding graphs or charts - can’t recognise the meaning of symbols - I bought a lovely craft kit, but turns out it has the mother of all charts, and so I open it, look at it, and put it away again. My cross stitch charts I expand to 10x and do them in little sessions marking off stitches as I go.

Difficulty remembering what symbols mean or linking numbers and symbols to directions - see above

Hard to understand even very simple spoken maths equations - I stopped my maths education at long division, Mrs Roper, fourth year juniors.

Get different answers to same Math problem and need to check work over and over again to be confident of getting the right answer. see above.

Gets lost easily and misplaces objects around the house - ask my husband about this one (if you have an hour to spare).

Difficulty working out change or a tip, use fingers to count - cannot see the problem with counting on my fingers

Trouble recognising patterns and sequencing - I think I'm alright at this, others may disagree

Motor functions - trouble learning dance steps or athletic movements or anything that requires you to move your body in a certain sequence - tried to learn ballroom dancing, jive, did GCSE Dance, and  despite practising the two dances I made them both up on the day, I did not pass well.

Struggles to keep scores in games and loses track of whose turn it is - yep

Difficulty remembering names and facial recognition (Prosopagnosia) - if you appear out of context that can hardly be my fault, I have, for some time, campaigned for name badges for all without success. 

If the majority of these fit you - congratulations, you are officially part of the most creative section of the population whoop whoop

I did the very involved test on The British Dyslexia Association website, which has given me a headache, and says that I don't fit the markers...so that's interesting, and Dyslexia experts care to comment? 

The Dyslexia Gang Part 2

For Dyslexia awareness week I wanted to share this piece about Dyslexia and Dyscalculia, to encourage people who have either condition, for their parents, partners and friends who need to know more. Differently-abled can be a fantastic thing!

I am a Dyslexic blogger, author and creativity coach, but this blog is all about Pascal, a retired university lecturer.

“Although I knew about Dyslexia I hadn’t heard of Dyscalculia until I was teaching at a university. Each term students’ work had to be double marked by two tutors, and this was followed by meetings where we discussed the marks we had allocated.  Not only could I could never remember how to work out the percentages of the marks, but then later I couldn't remember if it was agreed that the marks were to go up or down, so I was always having to double check with my colleagues.

The tutor that I double marked with also assessed students for Dyscalculia as part of his work, and eventually he took me to one side, to say that in his opinion he was quite sure I had Dyscalculia. Naturally as soon as I got home I jumped on the computer and did some research, and was astonished to find out that I experienced most of the symptoms! How had I managed to get to sixty five without

Unfortunately, although I wanted to be tested to make sure that I had the condition,  which the University were prepared to pay for, but if the diagnosis was confirmed I would no longer be allowed to teach, as it would hinder my ability to mark work. Although I would be offered an alternative post that did not involve teaching. I decided it was probably better not to have the test and be formally diagnosed.

The being late part of my Dyscalculia has affected my relationships with friends, family and colleagues - it has been hard for people to accept how difficult I found being on time. It has also made it hard in later life to have the confidence to make choices which involve commitments and deadlines as they are a nightmare when you have no idea how long it’s going to take you to do something.

It has been discovered that Dyscalculia is due to the malfunction of one gene, and from an educational point of view is now legally classed as a disability and listed as a learning disorder. But I was brought up in an era where you just had to get on with it regardless of how difficult you found things, and I would never have recognised that I have a learning disorder nor would I have classed myself as disabled and having special educational needs!  So, it has been quite a shock to discover just how much Dyscalculia has affected my life when I’ve stopped to think about it.  I always recognised my difficulties with understanding Maths and remembering numbers but hadn’t realised that is affected things like always being late and not being able to learn tap dancing!

The Dyslexic Gang Part 1

Welcome to the Dyslexic Gang Part 1! for Dyslexia awareness week I really wanted to share some stories of the achievements and wonderfulness of my fellow Dyslexics and those with Dyscalculia.

So if you, or your child, partner or friend has recently received a diagnosis take heart! they have just joined an exclusive tribe of wonderfulness. We are amazing people! and I hope that we can encourage people who have either condition. Differently-abled can be a fantastic thing!

As you know I am a Dyslexic blogger and author, speaker and creativity coach - which is why all my books are formatted to be accessible to those with Dyslexia and literacy issues with a larger than average more regular shaped font, wider spacing between lines,  shorter paragraphs, and bold titles to show where new stories start.

But this blog is all about Ashley and her son Adam, told by Ashley their story starts in the 1970's...

“When my son first started school nearly fifty years ago he struggled to learn to read. Each year he got further behind his peers. I can’t remember when I first heard the term Dyslexia but by the time my son reached age eight or nine it was clear to me that he definitely had a problem with reading and I decided to find out more.

The British Dyslexia Association sent me some leaflets that convinced that he had Dyslexia. But when I spoke to the head teacher at his school he was completely dismissive saying that ‘I don’t have disabled children in my school’. His father was also dismissive thinking that our son just needed to work harder.

By ten he struggled to read a book even though he had intellectual curiosity and had problems with his short-term memory. His father insisted that he went to the grammar school where he had to learn French and German, unfortunately this led to his becoming clinically depressed as it was impossible for him to learn either.

Finally, at age twelve with his reading age at around eight, his father was persuaded to let him be tested, and it was clear that he had Dyslexia. His father who had also always had issues with spelling - despite being a successful company director - then also decided to be tested, and found that he also had Dyslexia!

There wasn't really any help and support available in mainstream education, but my friend who was a primary teacher helped him with some extra tutoring. I was delighted when my son went on to study building and fulfilled his dream to become a stone mason, it's an unusual, technical, and demanding job, that he adores! he has had the honour of  working on some of the most famous churches and cathedrals in the UK.

I went on a trip to a Cathedral with my friends, and looking up and admiring the stone work at a particular point I was able to say "Adam carved that piece!" seeing things that my son has created that will last for hundreds of years makes me a very proud Mum indeed".