PLEDGE NOW

The Brain Science Behind Dyslexia

A young child reading with his stuffed animals. New research suggests dyslexia can be detected before a child starts learning to read. (Photo: John Morgan/flickr)

A young child reading with his stuffed animals. New research suggests dyslexia can be detected before a child starts learning to read. (Photo: John Morgan/flickr)

About 1 in 10 Americans struggle with dyslexia, a learning disability which can make reading a challenge. Children with dyslexia are often stigmatized, and feel the sting of failure when struggling with their disability. And that struggle can last for years. By the time a student is diagnosed with dyslexia, frequently in second or third grade, they’ve often already experienced numerous failures in school.

New research, by MIT and Children’s Hospital, is showing that it may be possible to detect the signs of dyslexia in kids’ brains well before they start learning to read. And that could allow parents and teachers to intervene earlier — maybe even preventing the humiliation and stress of failure.

Guests

John Gabrieli, MIT neuroscientist and a lead researcher in a joint MIT and Boston Children’s Hospital study on dyslexia.

Janet Thibeau, mother of Josh, 12, who is involved in the research.

More

WBUR’s CommonHealth: ‘I’m Not Stupid, Just Dyslexic’ — And How Brain Science Can Help

  • New research shows it’s possible to pick up some of the signs of dyslexia in the brain even before kids learn to read. And this earlier identification may start to substantially influence how parents, educators and clinicians tackle the disorder. Until recently (and sometimes even today) kids who struggled to read were thought to lack motivation or smarts. Now it’s clear that’s not true: Dyslexia stems from physiological differences in the brain circuitry. Those differences can make it harder, and less efficient, for children to process the tiny components of language, called phonemes.”

Other stories from this show:

Please follow our community rules when engaging in comment discussion on this site.

Host Meghna Chakrabarti introduces us to newsmakers, big thinkers and artists and brings us stories of relevance to Bostonians here and around the region. Live every weekday at 3 p.m. and 10 p.m.

  • Listen: Weekdays, 3 p.m. on 90.9 FM
  • Live Call-In: (800) 423-TALK
  • Listener Voicemail: (617) 358-0607
Most Popular
This site is best viewed with: Firefox | Internet Explorer 9 | Chrome | Safari