A New Path

Imagine hiking a small mountain. The goal is to get to the other side of the mountain in the fastest, easiest, and least frustrating way possible. You have three choices. One choice is to start on one side, follow the path to the top of the mountain, and then down the other side. The other choice is to go around the mountain without climbing to the top at all. The third choice is to zigzag all around the mountain, without a clear path, going up and then down, up and then down, and up and then down again until you finally reach the other side. Without argument, the fastest way would depend on the ability of the person hiking and the height of the mountain. While we might consider either of the first two options, we would all agree that the third way of zigzagging across the mountain would definitely be the most frustrating rather than the least frustrating way to go.

Now, transform that mountain into the brain trying to read and spell. For the typical reader, reading and spelling takes place by signals relaying messages in a neural, or brain, pathway that is fast and easy because it exists on the left side of the brain. However for people with dyslexia, that pathway has not been laid down in the brain due to genetic factors. Like the hiker who wanders back and forth over the mountain without a clear path to reach the other side, the dyslexic learner is using both sides of the brain, zigzagging back and forth in order to decode a word to create meaning out of it. Compound that process by putting words into sentences, paragraphs and stories. The goal of reading is hard to reach, and the experience is very frustrating.

However, the amazing part about how God created us is that the brain can be transformed and new neural pathways created. Through logical instruction and intense practice, a clear pathway that makes reading and spelling easier and less frustrating can be laid down in the brain. Dyslexic learners CAN read and spell given the right kind of instruction, by the right kind of instructor, for the right amount of time. Proven Orton-Gillingham methods like the Barton Reading & Spelling System can help. Find a certified Barton Tutor today at http://www.bartonreading.com!

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