Thursday, February 18, 2010

Very interesting news find – A must-read for all.


I surfed the net to see if I could find newspaper articles on dyslexic children in Japan and I chanced upon the following article about a dyslexic Australian boy in Japan.


The article is dated 10th July 1999. That was 10 years ago. You can read the full article here.

I have copied some of the salient points:


A BILINGUAL boy who speaks fluent Japanese and English yet is dyslexic in English is helping scientists to shed fresh light on the causes of word blindness.

The boy was born in Japan and went to school there, where he learned to speak and read in Japanese, but he spoke English at home with his British mother and Australian father


"It shows that dyslexia is not purely a reading problem because this boy can read, it's just that he can't read in English," Professor Butterworth said.


Reading this, I had to ask:


If this news was in the year 1999 what did the Dyslexia Associations in the world do about this report?

If they did nothing, then why not?

What further research was done on this matter?

Was there any follow-up?


The following stories are what I have read on the internet and want to share with you.

A boy was scolded by his teacher for not paying attention in his mathematics class. He was scolded for not being able to solve simple math problems and had said that he will not become anybody in life. His mother coached him and... That boy was Albert Einstein.

A boy was called "addled" or slow by his schoolmaster. The boy's mother took him out of school and proceeded to teach him at home. Had his mother not done this, perhaps, you and I will not know his name - Thomas Alva Edison. Edison had said many years later, "My mother was the making of me. She was so true, so sure of me, and I felt I had someone to live for, someone I must not disappoint.

This boy's high school guidance counsellor recommended that he drop out of school. This boy went on to obtain a bachelor’s degree in speech therapy. He is now the host of "The Tonight Show with Jay Leno".


The common thing among the great people listed above is ‘Dyslexia’.


I thank God for having allowed me to teach kids similar to the above.

I am sure some of these kids whom I have taught will one day be great men/women.

John, my first student and Mac who I am currently tutoring are brilliant kids. Guided in the proper manner they are going to etch their name in History.

My main reason for blogging is to be able to help someone out there, to achieve his/her full potential.

I had earlier mentioned that one of the definitions of dyslexia is 'language difficulty'. This is definitely a wrong definition as all my students have no problem with learning Mandarin and Malay. To substantiate my opinion, I would like to point out that Lee Kwan Yew, a dyslexic, had learned and used six languages - English, Malay, Latin, Japanese, Mandarin and Hokkien.


Unknown said...

I have an extremely intelligent brother who is now 40, and probably was dyslexic. A gifted mechanic and engineer who struggled throughout school. When I saw my son begin to have the same problems, bright, creative, but having difficulty spelling and reading fluently, I knew I had to help him so he wouldn't suffer the same fate of constantly struggling in school and college. Rick Riordan, who writes Percy Jackson and the Olympians, chose to make his main character dyslexic and ADHD because his son has this. Rick is a former teacher. Maybe we can get him to help us on the quest to make dyslexia better understood.

Luqman Michel said...

I hope that your son is reading better now. Believe me,if you use a method suitable to him he will learn very quickly.Do get as many parents with dyslexic children to follow my blog. I will soon start lessons that parents can use to teach their children.
If you know how to get Rick please ask him to spread this blog for the benefit of all parents with dyslexic children.

Unknown said...

My son is learning the Wilson Reading System based on Orton Gillingham. It has worked very well for him, and he is doing great.

Luqman Michel said...

I am happy to hear that.Email me as I would like to hear much more from you.
Thank you.

CailinMarie said...

Thank you for your comment on my blog post. My children were diagnosed using a test called "Gray's" which is more precise than the Woodcock Johnson test usually used in American Schools. Our specialists also uses the Orton Gillingham method.
Regarding the child who learned six languages but had issue with English. I found a study done in England (I believe) regarding a noted difference in the number of children believed to have dyslexia in English speaking countries as opposed to those in German and Italian speaking countries. I could not download the entire talk but I believe the study was specific to European languages. The theory was that in German and Italian there are fewer variations in phonetic rules than in English (wether it is British or American English) and that it is this inconsistancy that makes it so hard to decode in English. The study was presented by a Professor Uta Frith, provided by UCL and titled "Dyslexia - the English language and dyslexia in Europe."

Luqman Michel said...

Thank you for the information. I have been looking for sites to back up my findings and found the site you are talking about together with a few other sites. I'll be writing on this on Wednesday.

natahn said...

Hi Im Nantha.Age is very inspirational to read your blog especially the one abt the'nobody' to 'somebody' eg Jay Leno and Thomas Edison .

I believe that we must have a quest to improved ourself and with this knowledge also give a chance to others to improve too. The problems with the society at large is that if it is not a 'norm'he or she is consider broken. I understand how these people feel. They have been redicule consider as an 'outcast'.

I know this first hand as I never enjoyed school and loved art and class projects.Actually art was a forte for me but how do the education system weight this?.

So my final words are be strong , persistant and always try and try till you get fed-up!:)

Luqman Michel said...

Hi Nantha, You have come a long way since I first knew you. Just keep going and sometime soon you will find your niche. Not try and try till you get fed up ...but try until you make it!Believe in yourself.

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