Getting Help for Dyslexia & Reading Struggles

What is Dyslexia?

Dyslexia is a general term for disorders that involve difficulty in learning to read and spell. A child who receives the same classroom instruction as other students, but continues to struggle with some or all of the many aspects of reading and spelling, may have dyslexia.
The challenges can come in many different forms and are not limited to reversals of letters and words, a common misconception.
Dyslexia isn’t a symptom of low intelligence. Richard Branson and Steven Spielberg - both highly intelligent and creative people - have dyslexia.
It is the most common learning disability and most children with dyslexia have to work much harder than their peers to learn to read and spell and remember and apply classroom information.
It can be mild to severe and is often inherited. Effects can include low self-esteem, frustration, loss of motivation for learning, social and emotional issues including attentional difficulties.

Dyslexia is estimated to affect around 10% of the population

Signs that a child my have Dyslexia 

Problems learning the letter sounds for reading and spelling

Difficulty in reading single words, such as on flash cards and in lists (decoding)

Lack of fluency (ignores punctuation, reads slowly and monotonously) 

Poor spelling (spelling phonetically and inconsistently) 

Tends to confuse words with similar spelling (eg salt/slat) 

Difficulty understanding the meaning of text (reads and re-reads with little comprehension)

Becoming tired after reading for only a short time and avoids reading 

Homework is stressful

Identifying Dyslexia

 It is important to know if your child does have Dyslexia so that it can be managed

boy_stressed reading classroom school

Dyslexia will normally become apparent during the early years of schooling, when a child shows an unexplained difficulty in reading despite having all the skills, such as intelligence and verbal ability.

Many unidentified children develop coping strategies which can disguise dyslexia, so they are not identified and an evaluation may not be done until adulthood.

The earlier a child can be identified as dyslexic the sooner they can receive specific instruction for their needs.

What can you do?

If you feel that your child is displaying symptoms of dyslexia, do not listen if someone says, "They will grow out of it" or "All children progress at their own rate".

  • Seek professional advice.  Effective reading instruction needs to be implemented by a trained teacher or speech pathologist and include explicit, direct and systematic instruction in letter/sound association, decoding, sight word knowledge, vocabulary and comprehension.
  • Talk to your child’s school – make arrangements for them to take oral instead of written tests if possible and explore learning via audio or video recordings.
Research* has shown it is possible to change the brains of people with dyslexia by using the Fast ForWord brain training program

5 Ways Technology Can Help Students with Dyslexia

  1. Speech-to-text software
    For writing assignments, students can use a voice recognition tool that converts spoken words into typed sentences on the screen. Microsoft Word®, iPad®, and Google Translate have this speech-to-text feature built in.

  2. Text-to-speech software
    Reading everything from books to worksheets can be made easier by being converted to audio files. NaturalReader is one tool that can read aloud Microsoft Word files, webpages, PDF files, and emails.

  3. Smart pens
    LiveScribe™ SmartPen digitises the notes that a student writes in a notebook while also recording the lecture. Later, when the student is reviewing their notes, they can listen to what was being said at that moment.

  4. Computer games that target phonological processing
    Because dyslexia is primarily an auditory disorder, students should use a program that strengthens phonological processing. Fast ForWord123 is a reading and language program that has been proven effective in this approach by researchers at Stanford, Harvard, MIT, and more.

  5. Spell checker
    Spelling check apps that are especially helpful for students with dyslexia include American WordSpeller™ and Typ-O HD. But a pocket spell checker like the Franklin Collins Spellchecker might be better when writing with pen and paper. (The International Dyslexia Association recommends that kids start using spell check in fifth grade, after they’ve learned basic spelling rules.)

Because dyslexia is primarily an auditory disorder, students should use a program that strengthens phonological processing. Fast ForWord123 is a reading and language program that has been proven effective in this approach by researchers at Stanford, Harvard, MIT, and more.

Purchase Fast ForWord123 here

Or, complete the form if you would like more information on how Fast ForWord123 can help your child with Dyslexia or reading challenges.

Reading help

See how Fast ForWord has helped others with Dyslexia


"My son's reading fluency has gone from a page of “Babe” read reluctantly in 8-10 minutes to now reading 1 page in a minute with fluency and full comprehension.  He is finding it much easier to sequence events and can tell jokes in the right sequence."


"Good improvement in concentration and reading prolifically and the teacher has noticed an overall improvement in the classroom… best money ever spent."


"Miranda’s teacher told me that there had been a huge improvement in Miranda’s reading and writing in the last few weeks. She wanted to know what I had been doing with Miranda to bring about such great changes. Miranda is now more confident and enthusiastic as well."