Dear Gaila - Learning to Read with Dyslexia, part IV

May 24, 2016

For more tips & tricks for teaching reading to children with dyslexia see Part IPart II and Part III


Dear Gaila,


After years of having trouble at school, my son has finally been diagnosed with dyslexia. Is there any chance he can ever learn English?


Anxious Mother

Dear A. M.,

When students are suffering from dyslexia we need to give them tools to help them get around it.


Very often a student feels overwhelmed by the small print and small spaces. If at all possible try to enlarge the story. Second language learners especially are often given texts to read that are long and with small print in order to 'get a lot of material on one page.

Enlarge the text - if possible retype the story so that there can be more white space (double space) between lines, shorter sentences. You can even divide the sentences up into phrase per line. Look at these 'I Can Read Books' for little ones, which do just that. (Use the "Look Inside" tool for a preview of "Danny and the Dinosaur" or "Amelia Bedelia makes a Friend")


Leave wide margins so that your students can draw a picture or jot down a word to help remind them what those words are all about. 


You can take a peak at the sample pages of our Reading Rocks! reader, where we made sure to leave lots of white space to make it easy for students. 


With our help our students can acquire a new strategy that empowers them in their reading. 

Good Luck!




Gaila has almost 40 year of experience teaching and runs A.H.A.V.A., a non-profit to promote English literacy. Would you like to ask Gaila a question? Email us at or send us a message. Look out for more Dear Gaila columns


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