I have to be honest, I never thought twice about dyslexia until one of my 4 kids was diagnosed. Since that day, though, it’s been on my Baader-Meinhof radar. My middle son is only 7yo, but, since we homeschool, it’s been such a wild and wonderful ride watching how he learns. Don’t get me wrong, it’s not always easy, but it’s not bad either. It’s just different. He sees things completely different than the way I do, and adapting how I do things so that it fits for him has opens up new synaptic connections in my own mind.
I’m currently reading Malcolm Gladwell’s David and Goliath, a book about underdogs and how they so often triumph. He devotes a chapter to dyslexia from this point-of-view…would you wish dyslexia on your children? Of course most people wouldn’t, but his point is that dyslexia makes children different in such extraordinary ways that society would be at a loss if those differences did not exist.
It’s because of my experiences with my own son and Gladwell’s research that I’m now doing Strengthsfinders consulting for dyslexic children. I’ve used the popular strengths profile for many years with adults and organizations in my practice, but never devoted any time to its use for children. It’s an area that’s been missed, but where such a focus is sorely needed.
With most of my adult clients, I simply give them the test and analyze the results once they’re done. It’s very different with dyslexic children, because the test has to be given differently but in a way that does not influence the results. It’s actually a very fun and interesting experience.
What’s the point? I’m glad you asked. Treat dyslexia as a strength for your child. It’s not a condition or something that will go away or should be medicated out of existence. It’s something that you and your child need to find ways to work with. As I tell my son, he has a superpower that gives him the ability to think differently than others. The work I’m doing with dyslexic children and adults not only emphasizes the benefits of their dyslexic wiring, but also helps them discover their unique specific strengths. Once they discover those, the world opens up for them. My goal is that they will no longer see the world in terms of what they can’t do or aren’t great at, but to see it in terms of what they can do better than anyone else. What are they uniquely gifted to do that absolutely no one else in the world is wired for?
As an example, here are my Strengthsfinder results…
If you would like to talk, feel free to get in touch HERE.
For now, if you’d like to take a simple strengths test to give you an idea of your child’s capabilities, check one out HERE.
This message was written by a team of geeks, nerds, gamers, and Dr. David Powers. You can always find us at www.drdavidpowers.com. Thanks for reading!