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sudden onset reading difficulty - any experience out there

(8 Posts)
Handywoman Sat 06-Oct-12 15:01:40

Hi All,

I have a DD aged 9 with a diagnosis of Dyslexia. And a DD aged 7 with a history of severe language difficulties (now resolved) and social communication issues for which she awaits formal assessment for ASD.

My 7yo picked up reading skills very fast, in year 1 she suddenly shot through the Biff and Chip levels and used to happily pick up and devour books after school. In Y2 she was placed in the top set for phonics, so I am not imagining this ability.

Since beginning Y2 I have felt that this ability and reading 'stamina' is no longer evident. I thought initially that maybe her ability had just 'levelled off' while she was learning new skills. However she is now in Y3 and is still reading slowly, missing out words and struggling to decode new words (I notice similar observations noted in her reading record so the teacher is seeing this too). My DD also fails to notice full stops (for some reason!) and this obviously affects her comprehension.

This never used to be the case in YR and Y1. I have had her eyes tested because of this – her vision is perfect.

Has anyone heard of this? My 2 girls have very different cognitive strengths but I am aware it is possible that both are Dyslexic. But I cannot understand how it could happen like this ie make a really good start to reading and then struggle.

Has anyone heard of this or seen this with their DC (ie sudden decrease in reading skill)?

Hoping someone somewhere has heard of or seen the same.
Yours, perplexed,

Ineedalife Sat 06-Oct-12 16:28:01

We had a similar thing with Dd2, she took to reading really well and started on the school reading scheme [biff and chip] in the last term of nursery.

By the time she got to year 2 though she was really struggling. When there was more than one line on a page she simply couldnt track across the page.

I realised the extent of the problem when she couldnt copy the date off the board and took her to an optician who has done alot of work around dyslexia.

He immediately diagnosed eye tracking issues and she did a computer based course. She also had coloured lenses in her glasses.

This 2 things drastically improved her reading. She is dyslexic and still finds reading hard work but she was able to cope with GCSE english and despite the cock up with the marking got a grade C this summer.

An ordinary optician wouldnt be able to pick up these issues, you need a behavioural optometrist.
Sadly they dont come cheap, we have recently used the same one for Dd3 who has visual perception issues and he prescribed her coloured lenses but managed to get us a grant for half the cost due to her ASD diagnosis[apparently].

Ineedalife Sat 06-Oct-12 16:31:07

Sorry also meant to say, there are quite a few of us on here who have found that our children with ASD have learnt to read using whole word recognition instead of phonics.

This becomes much more difficult as the books get longer because they are relying on memory.

Dd3 learned her phonics really quickly and would easily pass a phonics test but she doesnt apply it to her reading and never sounds out words.

Just something else to think about.

Good lucksmile

Chundle Sat 06-Oct-12 20:26:05

Dd1 (adhd and some other quirks!) Was reading simple words by sight by age 3. Had mastered the first set of 100 words by the time she was 4 by memory. In reception her reading was flying so I thought. Top sets for reading in reception and yr 1. Year 2 was a farce as crap school. Year 3 moved to fab school they assessed her as average now year 4 and still average. She's amazing at learning spellings but its because her memory is so good. I think like has been said above she was so good in early years as she learnt by rote memory but she can't do that now words are getting tougher and can't seem to sound them out

auntevil Sat 06-Oct-12 20:28:09

We're just picking up on the reading problems now.
DS1 in Y5 and I had worries for a good year or so.
Like Ineedalife - the issues started coming when there were bigger blocks of text, often smaller text. Also something I had not noticed until I was looking at DS3s books, the early phases of phonics have a lot of text printed on the picture, or a block of colour at the bottom of the page. When the books get harder, it goes to white page, black text - as no/minimal picture. So there is an element of colour overlay in many early reading books.
I have also found that DS1 uses different strategies for disguising his problems with reading. It's amazing how conniving clever they can be when choosing what books to read.
Literally this week we have been told he has the markers looked for to be dyslexic. We are now trialling colour overlay. School has accepted the dx, even though quite surprised. Just remember, it is no indicator of academic ability.

cornsconkers Sat 06-Oct-12 21:14:55

Yes ds2 at about age 9
Used to churn through books in no time
We were told he was the best reader in the class in y2 ( high attaining school)
Now he struggles to read/ focus for more than a few pages
However he also struggles to follow when I read to him now - which wasn't a problem in the past
His reading age remains above average ( as is his spelling) however his year 5/6 primary teachers decided that he was a bit dim.
He has dyspraxia and I think it's possibly linked to working memory and general lack of co-ordination of thought.
He doesn't have dyslexia.

auntevil Sat 06-Oct-12 21:26:10

I think it is something like 75% of children with dyspraxia also have dyslexia, so it could be that there are a lot of crossover symptoms.

Handywoman Sun 07-Oct-12 00:17:43

Thanks, guys, especially INaL, food for thought! Another trip to behavioural optometrist then! ££££££££££ gggrrrrrrr


HW x

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