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A reader found this article entitled B for D: The Lowdown on Dyslexia and Other Learning Disabilities that was published on Female Network.com in 2006. Let me share excerpts of this article with you.
Slowpoke. Stupid. Bobo. Weirdo. Nine-year-old Albie Casino has heard them all. He didn’t have friends in the exclusive boys’ school he attended from prep to grade two. Nobody wanted to play with him. One day, when he asked his mom Rina if he could bring his Koosh Ball to school, her heart broke as Albie explained: “If I don’t have it, nobody will play with me.”
It’s not because Albie looks different. A handsome boy, he has even modeled for a magazine. A smart one, he was one of the top 30 who passed his school’s prep entrance exam, which 1,000 or so boys took. But Albie can’t read or spell as well as the other children can. He reads “brop” for “drop,” “whon” for “whom,” “flit” for “felt,” “they had tried” for “they had trained.” He spells “entr” for “enter,” “maek” for “make,” “surkol” for “circle.” Albie, you see, has dyslexia.
Albie was tested by his school’s guidance department after his teacher noticed his difficulty with reading. The teacher also noted that Albie would excuse himself from class whenever there was a board activity or when it was time for his remedial reading classes. When told that their son had dyslexia. Albie’s parents initially refused to believe it, saying, “Ano ba ‘yan? Baka okey lang.” It was only after Rina read up on the subject and then learned that two of Albie’s cousins were dyslexic did acceptance come.
Acting on the recommendation of the school’s guidance department, Albie’s parents brought him to Wordlab School in Quezon City, a private educational institution that assesses and works with children with learning disabilities. Wordlab recommended an after-school reading intervention program for Albie. They also wrote Albie’s school a list of things they could do for the boy to help him cope. Among these were giving him reading texts in advance so that he can have more time to practice on them, and giving him more time to take written tests.
His school was traditional and the atmosphere very competitive, however, so the requests couldn’t be accommodated. Albie was transferred to a progressive school. In this new school, classes are limited to 13 students for all grade levels and non-traditional ways of teaching are accommodated. The teachers slow down until the students understand a lesson; homework is not piled on, and addition techniques are taught with a rhythmic dance. All around, children are motivated to learn at their own pace.
Boost His Self-esteem
Albie is now in grade three in this school, and his parents can’t help but notice how much his self-esteem has shot up. Says Rina, “He has friends now and his social skills improved very much. He doesn’t say ‘I can’t’ that much anymore.”