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has anybody heard of hyperlexia?

(7 Posts)
zippitippitoes Wed 24-May-06 18:27:57

..not big worry as ds is 18 but when he had an educational psycholigist test last week she mentioned..now I've googled it and I think there must be a muddle as it seems to be an American term?

singersgirl Wed 24-May-06 18:33:33

Hyperlexia is usually early advanced reading without necessarily comprehending and is often linked to autistic spectrum disorders. Don't know any more, I'm afraid.

zippitippitoes Wed 24-May-06 19:05:05

Well I think she is talking rubbish then..hopefully the rest of her report will be ok .. thanks

zippitippitoes Thu 25-May-06 06:03:30

has anybody else heard of it or know anything about it?

coppertop Thu 25-May-06 06:32:19

IIRC hyperlexia is, as singersgirl says, when a child is able to read early and at an advanced level but without understanding what they are reading. The traits are very similar to autism and I think it can co-exist with autism. My ds1, for example, would read out whole complicated words at 2yrs but had zero understanding of them and was silent the rest of the time. He was dx'ed with autism about a year later.

Hyperlexia seems to be a term more widely used in the US so I suppose that's why so many of the sites are American.

Maternaltouch Thu 25-May-06 08:43:56

Hi, my son has Hyperlexia as defined by the American Hyperlexia Association www.hyperlexia.org - if you look on their website they have a list of characteristics which define the condition but bear in mind this may not be at all what your ed.psych was talking about.

The confusion arises because in the UK its not recognised as a condition in its own right, children who in the states would be diagnosed as hyperlexic are generally (not always) just lumped in with Aspergers and other high functioning autism spectrum disorders BUT it is worth knowing about it if you think your child has the features shown on the AHA site. My son is nearly 11 and went through all the stages from not talking, precocious ability to read but unable to talk. By tapping into his knowledge of reading we were able to help him to learn to talk but he learned it like a foreign language and he can still sound just very slightly off-key.

We had horrendous problems with the school system because he was just labelled as "speech and social communication disorder" which meant that his teachers totally failed to take on board his mild but specific learning needs and nearly destroyed his self esteem. We took him out of school two years ago and are home educating - he is thriving :-)

If you've had an ed psych in this country mention it she probably just means the UK "definition" of hyperlexia which is seen as a marker for some autistic spectrum and communication disorders.

Jenny

zippitippitoes Thu 25-May-06 10:23:30

thank you for your replies..he definitely didn't read early in fact he struggled to read at all until he was 7 or 8 and didn't get to his reading age until secondary school, so I think she is wrong, which is a bit disconcerting but I will wait for her report.

When he was younger he was identified as possibly having some autistic traits which remain but have diminished in importance in his teens but I think along with dyslexia, he is dyspraxic which means that he has great difficulty physically writing but he overcomes that with the computer.

He can read perfectly well it's just that he has great difficulty reading and processing the information that he has read..sounds like something quite different from hyperlexia. More related to the other problems I think.

He has an HE place for the autumn so this test was to go to the institution with regard to providing him with any help required.

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