Dyslexia translates to “difficulty with words”. It applies to children who have significant and persistent difficulties with spelling, reading or writing. They may also have problems with time, short-term memory, sequencing and motor skills. A dyslexic learner may become frustrated about their failures which can lead to low self-esteem and behaviour problems.

Some Characteristics:


  • Discrepancy between apparent intelligence and school progress
  • Slow processing of written and spoken language
  • Poor concentration and organisation
  • Confusion over left and right.


  • Struggles with sounds
  • Reverses or confuses letters or words
  • Omits words or syllables
  • Alters word order of sentences
  • Has difficulty keeping place on a line or finding next line
  • Slow reading speed, does not comprehend meaning of stories and reads monotonously with little inflection.


  • Reverses or inverses letters
  • Transposes letters e.g. “metl” for “melt”
  • Copies inaccurately
  • Omits or adds letters, syllables and words.


  • Written work may not match oral ability letters and numbers are reversed or badly formed
  • Confused by similar letters e.g. “b” and “d”
  • Difficulty writing on a line and sticking to a margin, uneven letter size and problems spacing words.

The British Dyslexia Association Tel: 0333 405 4555
Dyslexia Institute Tel: 01482 329416


Dyscalculia causes people to have problems with arithmetic and mathematical concepts. One of the factors of dyscalculia is a weakness in visual processing; students have difficulties visualising numbers and mentally mix them up causing “silly mistakes”. Students also struggle to sequence numbers or information which causes problems remembering specific facts and formulas needed to complete mathematical calculations.

Some Characteristics:

  • Difficulties with time; may be unable to keep track of time or often be late. Struggles with concepts such as days, weeks, months and seasons
  • Inability to recall timetables or sequences of events
  • Difficulties following steps in maths operations
  • Lack of understanding of number lines, place value, positive and negative values
  • Struggles to “carry” or “borrow” in multiplication and division
  • Difficulty with fractions
  • Finds handling money a challenge



Dyspraxia is a specific neurological disorder that prevents messages being sent to and from the brain efficiently. A dyspraxic person has decreased ability to make a controlled or coordinated physical response in a given situation. A child may be capable of performing a task one day but fails the next as the “process” for the task has become lost in the brain. Some processes that have been lost can sometimes be recalled, however they are often completely lost forcing the child to relearn the skill.

Some characteristics:


  • Immaturity in comparison to peers
  • Difficulties forming friendships; may be loners
  • Over emotional; easily upset
  • Difficulty to adjusting to new situations
  • Poor hand-eye coordination
  • Prone to accidents.


  • Speech and language difficulties
  • Easily distracted and poor concentration
  • Poor handwriting skills and immature drawing
  • Difficulty following sequential instructions.


  • Awkward walking, running and climbing
  • Takes longer than peers to learn skills like skipping or riding a bike
  • Difficulty using scissors, knives and forks
  • Slow to dress, unable to tie shoes, do up buttons etc
  • Poor organisational skills
  • Poor recognition of dangerous situations.

Dyspraxic Foundation Tel: 01462 454 986