Thoughts ahead of seeing The Dyslexia Portrait

Ahead of attending the Dyslexia Portrait Artist Talk by Miranda Harr (Wednesday 6.30pm 25th Oct) it occurs to me I know very little about dyslexia, aside from a notion that letters get reversed or somehow, appear to move around on the page…

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Artist Talk with Miranda Harr – 6.30pm Hull University Miranda is a Hull-based photographer specialising in creative and abstract photography. After struggling with reading all of her life, she was diagnosed with  dyslexia at the age of 39. This relatively late-life diagnosis set Miranda on her journey to try and show the frustrations and difficulties that people with dyslexia face, as well as the positive benefits it can bring. For more details go to Evensi

I realise I am incredibly fortunate, to have had parents who instilled in me, a love for reading at an early age. I have vivid memories of my father reading me the Roald Dahl books and how I was later encouraged to read them for myself. Bundles of shiny new books would be a familiar sight at birthdays, Christmas and there was always the library. I really enjoyed reading and as a teen read voraciously, hiding under the covers with a torch to avoid detection, losing myself in science fiction and magical fantasy adventures.

I also enjoyed writing, the challenge of expressing oneself satisfactorily on the page, has become a way of life for me. Writing has for better or worse, been my salvation and my main source of income for any number of years. Without writing I would be lost. Without having learned to read I would similarly have been lost. I simply cannot imagine not being able to understand, appreciate or otherwise enjoy the written word.

This brings me to a raft of questions I’d like to ask about Dyslexia. Some questions I’m hoping I may find answers to, at the Dyslexia Portrait talk, being held tomorrow.

What provision is there for identifying dyslexia in schools? What effect does a dyslexia diagnosis have on learning?  Surely to deny a child the ability to read and write is tantamount to a crime? Is education and therefore reading and writing (and maths) not seen as the best way, to produce happy successful and fulfilled adults? What about those people who are never diagnosed or diagnosed later in life, what effect does such a diagnosis have then?

What is the effect of technology on dyslexia, where does an inability to spell stop and dyslexia begin? What about things like text speak, lazy english and with spell check and auto correct does it even matter now?

Is Dyslexia hereditary, dietary or does it stem from other environmental causes? And is dyslexia on the rise or, as is always the way with these things, has detection improved so skewing the figures. Can dyslexia ever be corrected, is that even the right way to think about it?

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