What is Dyslexia?
“Dyslexia is a language-based learning disability. Dyslexia refers to a cluster of symptoms which result in people having difficulties with specific language skills, particularly reading. Students with dyslexia usually experience difficulties with other language skills such as spelling, writing, and pronouncing words. Dyslexia affects individuals throughout their lives; however, its impact can change at different stages of a person’s life. It is referred to as a learning disability because dyslexia can make it very difficult for a student to succeed academically in the typical instructional environment, and in its most severe forms, will qualify a student for special education, special accommodations, or extra support services.”
Source: The International Dyslexia Association “Dyslexia Basics Fact Sheet” 08/07.
Videos about Dyslexia
What is Dyslexia?
10 Myths about Dyslexia
University of Florida College of Education Literacy Institute – talk on dyslexia and resources
Resources and Helpful Websites:
The University of Florida College of Education Literacy Institute has a comprehensive list of resources about Dyslexia and Dyslexia Policy along with parent resources:
International Dyslexia Association
Decoding Dyslexia Florida
Yale Center for Dyslexia & Creativity
Learning Disabilities Association of America
Additional Resources for Understanding Dyslexia
What can PTA’s do to celebrate Dyslexia Awareness Month at Schools?
- Ask your media department to house books and audiobooks about dyslexia. Your PTA can fund these books. Find examples here:
- Partner with your school district and host a dyslexia simulation night.
- Host a literacy night at your school and highlight different tools for reading.
Thank you to Shore Acres Elementary School PTA for sharing their amazing resources. Click on the link below for more resources!
In recognition of Down Syndrome Awareness Month, we recognize and celebrate abilities instead of disabilities. Individuals with Down Syndrome have an extra chromosome and Down Syndrome affects 1 in 691 children. The most common form of Down Syndrome is Trisomy 21. Adults with Down Syndrome are living longer and leading wonderful lives.
In honor of the month, here are 12 facts about Down syndrome you may not know:
- Down syndrome is named for Dr. John Langdon Down, who wrote the most prominent paper describing the disorder in the 1860s. The name Down syndrome was not standardized until 1975.
- Down syndrome is far and away the most common condition involving chromosomes, occurring approximately in one out of every 691 births.
- More than 400,000 people are living with Down syndrome in the United States.
- The most common type of Down syndrome is Trisomy 21, which means an extra copy of the 21st. It is not hereditary. The other two types are translocation and mosaicism, which account for around 5% of cases.
- While incidences of Down syndrome correlate with the mother’s age, around 80% of Down syndrome babies are born to mothers under the age of 35.
- Nothing a parent does or does not do is known to cause Down syndrome during pregnancy – it occurs randomly.
- Down syndrome occurs regularly in both sexes and across socioeconomic classes.
- With the great strides made in understanding this disorder, individuals with Down syndrome are living long, happy lives. The life expectancy for these individuals has increased from 25 years in 1980 to over 60 years today.
- Down syndrome leaves people with an increased risk of some medical conditions. These conditions include congenital heart defects, respiratory issues, hearing problems, Alzheimer’s disease, leukemia, and thyroid disorders. Parents and caretakers need to take extra care in screening for medical issues.
- Students with Down syndrome are now included in many classrooms across the country. In the past, special needs classes were the only option for learners with Down syndrome, but today most experts recommend full or partial inclusion in many standard classes.
- While individuals with Down syndrome experience cognitive delays, they are often mild to moderate. Most people with Down syndrome lead fulfilling and productive lives.
- Down syndrome is still a little-understood disorder. While researchers are aware of what this condition is, we know little about what causes it or how symptoms develop. There is hope that future research can lead mitigation of some symptoms.
If you’re looking for a local organization for Down syndrome support for your child, we recommend Gigi’s Playhouse in your area, https://gigisplayhouse.org/
Here are 21 Ways to celebrate and raise awareness about Downs Syndrome: