Test and help dyslexic kids early

I agree with senior education correspondent Sandra Davie that "a big hurdle would be finding pre-school educators who can do reading intervention programmes" ("Master reading, maths early for a good start in life"; last Sunday).

My son could not read even when he was in his second year at kindergarten. His teachers did not single him out for intervention; they just said he learnt slowly.

I sent him for assessment at the KK Women's and Children's Hospital anyway, and he was recommended for referral to the Dyslexic Association of Singapore.

But my son has yet to begin any therapy.

He is now in Primary 1, and despite being on the school's learning support and buddy reading programmes, he was still unable to read fluently or spell. Much of his school work had to be completed at home under my guidance.

I enrolled in a course to teach dyslexic children to read. Using the method I was taught, I was able to get him to read and spell with confidence.

Learning to read comes naturally to most children, but the dyslexic ones can do so only if they are taught.

My concerns are for children whose parents have yet to find a way to help them.

From my own experience and by talking to other parents, I do not think our educators are trained and equipped to detect children with problems like dyslexia and to carry out reading intervention.

Previously, I did not believe in early detection because I did not think there was an effective intervention method to help my son.

Now I know otherwise, and I encourage parents to get their children to go for testing, and look for a method that can really help the children.

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