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The Importance of Screening for Language-Based Learning Differences in Pre-School Children
Riverside School offers a complimentary awareness workshop to early childhood educators, pediatricians, child psychologists, educational and community organizations/associations. This workshop highlights the importance of identifying children who are at risk for having a language-based learning difference as early as age 4.
To schedule a one-hour long workshop, contact the school’s development office at Development@riversideschool.org.
Free Pre-School Screenings
Please read the following information. If you suspect that your pre-school child is at risk for having a language based learning difference contact Riverside School to schedule a free screening at email@example.com.
(Riverside School provides free screening for children age 4-6. Space is limited and appointments must be made prior to screening.)
How do I know?
Many children are born with brains that are wired differently than most. When these differences cause delays in language-based skills, it is often called dyslexia. Current research shows that the sooner a child with dyslexia is offered the opportunity to learn in a way that best suits them, the greater the opportunity the child has for success.
Between the ages of 2 and 4, some children demonstrate observable weaknesses in specific phonological skills. The delay in skills is even more likely if a family member or close relative has had learning difficulties or been diagnosed with dyslexia. If a parent has dyslexia, the chances are 35-40% that their child will also be dyslexic. Dyslexia is a not something that a child will outgrow.
Parents and educators can look for consistent patterns of difficulty that may signal an underlying learning difference. To begin the screening process, review the following lists of difficulties often observed in children with dyslexia. Each child is unique and will have different strengths and weaknesses.
Language and Reading Skills
- Early delays with speaking
- Mispronounces words
- Limited interest in books and stories
- Difficulty retrieving vocabulary
- Trouble naming letters
- Difficulty rhyming
Motor and Social Skills
- Appears clumsy or awkward
- Trouble with buttons, snaps or zippers
- Struggles to learn to tie shoes
- Awkward pencil grasp
- Struggles to color within the lines
- Difficultly with self-control when frustrated
- Difficulty sustaining attention in work tasks or play activities
Riverside School’s Early Identification Program
Riverside School now provides a limited number of free screenings for children ages 4-6 who are at risk for having a language-based learning difference. Screenings are offered one day each month and are conducted by Riverside School staff. The screenings will provide parents with additional information needed in determining whether or not to have a child undergo testing and evaluation for language-based and other learning difficulties.
Prior to scheduling a screening, parents are encouraged to review the information provided by the following websites.
The National Center for Learning Disabilities website provides information on learning differences including a Learning Disability check list.
The Get Ready to Read website offers information for parents of pre-readers as they prepare their children for school. This website also offers a self-scoring on-line screening tool that will help to determine whether or not your child is at risk for having a language-based learning difference.
What to Remember
- You cannot tell someone has dyslexia just by looking at them.
- Dyslexia is NOT an indicator of intelligence.
- Having dyslexia in no way inhibits one’s creativity, ability to learn or to succeed in life.
- The National Joint Committee on Learning Disabilities recommends that all preschoolers should be
screened to assess early language and reading skill development as they are for vision and hearing.