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Where does dyslexia begin? Or how feelings of confusion interfere with learning.

Dyslexia begins with confusion caused by a lack of understanding of a word being read or a clear internal image of the letters that make up a word.

Feel a little dyslexic and try reading the names of cities in Iceland!

Can you read all the words while in focus?

How many words can you read before you become disoriented - feeling like there's no point in continuing?

Let's take a closer look at what's going on.

When starting to read, at first we are surprised at the difficulty in reading and pronouncing words, but we still read the first 2-3-4 words. And we read more or less correctly. Then we start to get a little “bored” when reading and at some point we want to quit this meaningless activity. This confusion has accumulated to a critical level. We have reached the threshold of confusion. To get to this stage I needed to read 11 words. And you?

What if you can’t stop reading? Like a child in class, for example. Then a state of disorientation will set in: your imagination will come in and try to save you from this unpleasant feeling of confusion. In this case, two scenarios are possible:

- you will continue reading, but you will start thinking about something else. Your imagination will help you choose the right topic! :-) And then you simply won’t remember what you read and won’t be able to answer the questions.

- you will read with errors, as your imagination will “throw” familiar words to you instead of unfamiliar ones. And then you, too, will not remember what you read, or you will remember it with distortions, and you will have difficulties answering the questions.

Why do the names of Iceland's cities confuse most people?

- firstly, we have never heard of them and they do not matter to us. That is, we do not have a Mental Image of the Meaning of these Words. I am sure that those people who have visited these cities or live in them will be able to read the names without confusion. Because these names are not abstract for them, but are supported by specific mental images: views of streets, architecture, residents, nature, sights, specific smells and tastes.

-secondly, these are long words with an unusual letter combination. Which strains our attention and makes the reading process more energy-consuming.

- thirdly, these are incomprehensible letters - symbols that do not exist in English and Russian languages. We're not sure if we're pronouncing them correctly. I would say that we are even sure that we still read incorrectly, adapting an unfamiliar symbol to a similar letter in any familiar language.

If you or your child read and make mistakes, if it is difficult to answer questions or retell, then think about whether there is dyslexia.

© Copyright 2021

Elena Nikulina, licensed facilitator DDAI (Davis Dyslexia Association International) for the correction of dyslexia, dyscalculia, dysgraphia, dyspraxia, Attention Deficit Disorder with or without Hypo/Hyperactivity, and other problems in training according to the author's method of Ronald Davis, facilitator RDAF (Ronald Davis Autism Foundation ) to help people with Autism Spectrum Disorder, Director of Dyslexia Correction and Support Centre, London, UK.

For more information on how to treat dyslexia, ADD(D) and other learning difficulties, see Ronald Davis' books The Gift of Dyslexia, The Gift of Learning, and Autism and the Seeds of Change: Achieving Full Participation in Life Using the Davis Approach to autism." — Abigail Marshall (author), Ronald Dell Davis (author).​

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