The gift of dyslexia by Paula Gumley (Dyslexia Specialist)
The ability to think “out of the box”, creativity, perseverance and determination, talents in visual and performance arts, talents in the field of digital imagery, computer software talents, strengths in the field of crafts such as woodwork, the ability to work well with people, strength in the field of science and engineering, and the “gift of the gab”, only some of the talents and strengths that people with dyslexia may have.
We spend so much time worrying about and trying to remediate the problem areas that come with dyslexia that we often lose sight of the gifts that are also part of the learning style.
I believe that it is much more useful to approach dyslexia with a positive mindset. The following phrases should ring true for any parent, teacher or therapist of a dyslexic child:
- Attitude is everything
- Confidence is key
- EQ will take you further in life than IQ
- Perseverance and determination
With the right mindset a child and consequently a dyslexic adult can achieve anything they set their minds to achieve.
I always approach my dyslexia therapy from the point of view that dyslexia is not a disease, it is not even a condition, it is merely a learning style that is different to the norm. Having a brain that uses multiple areas to deal with language, rather than just the normal left brain language area means that people with a dyslexic learning style are often interesting, creative, unique individuals who make the world a much more interesting place. These are the Richard Branson’s, the Jamie Oliver’s, the Max Factor’s, the Walt Disney’s, the Leonardo Da Vinci’s of our world. Imagine the world without those colourful geniuses. We have to celebrate talents in our dyslexic kiddies and nurture them. We have to fan the flame of talent where we see it and make sure it is not snuffed out by a lack of self-esteem and low confidence because they cannot spell or read well.