Smith on Dyslexia: We Can Turn Disability into PossibilitySEP 18, 2014
Washington, D.C. - The Committee on Science, Space, and Technology today held a hearing to examine the latest scientific research on dyslexia, the most common reading disability affecting one out of every five people. The hearing reviewed promising future research directions and treatments for people with dyslexia to overcome challenges they face, and explored educational opportunities for students with dyslexia in fields of science, technology, engineering, and mathematics (STEM).
Chairman Lamar Smith (R-Texas): “People with dyslexia think in a way that others do not. But typically in our school systems today there is not recognition, early detection, or enough teachers who are trained to spot symptoms of dyslexia early enough to get the students the intervention they need. That is why we have recently seen grass roots groups, like Decoding Dyslexia, form nationwide, and more specialized schools started to fill the gap. Unfortunately, not everyone has access to these types of schools and the learning strategies they instill in their students to help them become successful. For most people, dyslexia is a disability. But if we change the way we approach it, we can turn disability into possibility and give millions of individuals a brighter and more productive future.”
Dyslexia is a developmental reading disorder characterized by difficulty with learning to read fluently and with accurate comprehension despite normal or above-average intelligence. The exact causes of dyslexia are not completely understood, but brain imaging studies show differences in the structure and function of the brains of people with dyslexia.
Witnesses today provided impassioned testimony about personal experiences with dyslexia and how they have helped others overcome this challenge through innovative and creative problem-solving. While dyslexia is considered a learning disability, many talented people—especially in science, engineering, and the creative arts—have been diagnosed with dyslexia, including Albert Einstein, Thomas Edison, and John Chambers, CEO of Cisco Systems.
The National Science Foundation, an agency under the Science Committee’s jurisdiction, funds studies on dyslexia, and particularly, how dyslexic individuals view the universe differently due to visual-spatial skills. The lead astronomer and director of the Hubble Space Telescope Science Institute has dyslexia. The National Institute of Health also studies the neuroscience of dyslexia, as well as funding studies on how dyslexic students can best learn.
Witnesses today emphasized that despite common misunderstandings, dyslexia is not due to either a lack of intelligence or desire to learn, and with appropriate teaching methods, people with dyslexia can learn successfully. They also praised progress that has been made in the science behind dyslexia, saying that we don’t have a knowledge gap but gap in action. In other words, our current understanding of dyslexia is not fully utilized in either policy or practice.
Over 80 members of Congress have joined the bipartisan Congressional Dyslexia Caucus, co-chaired by Reps. Bill Cassidy and Julia Brownley. The caucus helps educate the public about dyslexia and advocates for policies that support those individuals who have dyslexia.
The following witnesses testified today:
Hon. Bill Cassidy (R-La.), Member, U.S. House of Representatives
Hon. Julia Brownley (D-Calif.), Member, U.S. House of Representatives
Dr. Sally Shaywitz, Director of the Yale Center for Dyslexia and Creativity
Ms. Stacy Antie, parent and advocate of a child with dyslexia from Louisiana Key Academy
Mr. Max Brooks, author and screenwriter who has dyslexia
Dr. Peter Eden, Ph.D., President of Landmark College
Dr. Guinevere Eden, Director of the Center for the Study of Learning
For more information about today’s hearing, including witness testimony and the archived webcast, visit the Science, Space, and Technology Committee website.
113th CONGRESS 2d Session
The wording is below.
If your represented by Congressman Stephen Lynch or Congressman Richard Neal they are the only members of Congress from MA who have NOT cosponsored.
Please contact them!
Ask them to join Congressman Jim McGovern, Congresswoman Nikki Tsongas, Congresswoman Katherine Clark, Congressman John Tierney, Congressman William Keating and Congressman Mike Capuano in support of this Resolution.
Calling on schools and State and local educational agencies to recognize that dyslexia has significant educational implications that must be addressed.
Whereas, defined as an unexpected difficulty in reading in an individual who has the intelligence to be a much better reader, dyslexia reflects a difficulty in getting to the individual sounds of spoken language which typically impacts speaking, reading, spelling, and often, learning a second language;
Whereas dyslexia is highly prevalent, affecting one out of five individuals in some form, and is persistent;
Whereas dyslexia is a paradox, so that often the same individual who has a weakness in decoding or reading fluency also has strengths in higher level cognitive functions such as reasoning, critical thinking, concept formation, and problem solving;
Whereas great progress has been made in understanding dyslexia at a scientific level, including its epidemiology, and cognitive and neurobiological bases; and
Whereas diagnosis of dyslexia is critical, and must lead to focused, evidence-based interventions, necessary accommodations, self-awareness, self-empowerment, and school and life success: Now, therefore, be it
That the House of Representatives calls on schools and State and local educational agencies to recognize that dyslexia has significant educational implications that must be addressed.
Monday July 28th 10:30 shotgun start
Support the tutoring center that has helped students for over 20 years overcome their dyslexia and succeed!
What better way than to play golf!
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Teddy Bear Classic 2014
The 20th Annual Fun Fundraising Golf Tournament
Monday, July 28, 10:30 a.m. Shotgun Start, $125 per player
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Join them for GOLF and or Dinner at
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ONLY A FEW SHORT DAYS LEFT !
July 17, 2014 | 6:04 AM | George Hicks
How Playing Music Affects The Developing Brain WBUR
CommonHealthHow Playing Music Affects The Developing Brain
Take notes by hand for better long-term comprehension (click for the story).
Date: April 24, 2014
Association for Psychological Science
Dust off those Bic ballpoints and college-ruled notebooks: research shows that taking notes by hand is better than taking notes on a laptop for remembering conceptual information over the long term. "Our new findings suggest that even when laptops are used as intended -- and not for buying things on Amazon during class -- they may still be harming academic performance," says a psychological scientist involved in the study.
What types of things can you learn about dyslexia at MIT? Brain scans may help diagnose dyslexia.
Differences in a key language structure can be seen even before children start learning to read.
Excellent article and video.
http://newsoffice.mit.edu/2013/brain-scans-may-help-diagnose-dyslexia-0813Anne Trafton, MIT News Office
August 13, 2013