Symptoms of dyslexia

Synonyms in a broader sense

Isolated or circumscribed R.real writingsweakness, dyslexia, dyslexia, dyslexia, R.real writingsdisorder, LRS, R.real writing S.weakness, R.real writing S.disorder, partial impairment, partial impairment

Common typos

Dyslexia, dyslexi.


In contrast to the other learning content, dyslexia is understood to mean poor performance in reading, writing and spelling; other school areas have this partial performance weakness Not (only secondary) affected. Classic dyslexics have a normal to above-average intelligence. This intelligence is in contrast to the performance in the sub-areas of reading, writing and spelling.

Again and again it is difficult to distinguish classic dyslexia from reading and writing difficulties (LRS). Symptomatically, they are sometimes very similar. One of the main distinguishing features is the discrepancy between intelligence and performance in the areas mentioned. It is also noticeable that other school areas are not affected by this problem. A “classic dyslexic” is therefore capable of performing well in other subjects, such as mathematics.

It is important for the success of a therapy that symptoms of dyslexia are recognized early and a dyslexia diagnosis is made as soon as possible. In the context of diagnostics, it must always be ensured that its test procedures provide initial indications of the areas to be funded (= funding diagnostics).

Symptoms of abnormal reading, writing, and spelling skills

The symptoms of abnormal reading, writing and spelling skills are varied. General errors are usually analyzed and assigned to the respective problem areas, which are then specifically addressed and trained in the course of therapy.
It should not be disregarded, however, that the problem areas in the area of ​​reading and spelling are also, and sometimes even particularly, reflected in child behavior. The extent to which the symptoms appear in the individual children always depends on the child's psyche and strength.

A distinction can be made between:

  1. The primary manifestations of dyslexia
  2. The secondary manifestations of dyslexia

Primary manifestations

Symptoms of dyslexia

Primary manifestations manifest themselves primarily in the child's performance in reading and (spelling). Each individual “discipline” can be viewed from different angles.

For example it depends on the Reading ability (formal aspect), the reading speed and the Number of errors on, but also on Types of errors (qualitative aspect), reading comprehension (content aspect), as well as the Stress and phrasing (aesthetic aspect) are indispensable when evaluating reading performance.

It is similar with writing. The content aspect can be seen in the written expression of a child.
The primary manifestations also include the Error systemwhose typology is handled differently.

Defects sorted by appearance (phenomenological error typology; descriptive (= descriptive) error grouping)

  • Word omissions: Whole words are not written
  • Omissions: Different (single) letters of a word are not written
  • Word additions: Whole words are added
  • Additions: Different (single) letters are integrated into the word
  • Confusion of consonants: m instead of an n, etc.
  • Vowel mix-ups: Interchanges of vowels, e.g. o instead of u, for example in the word: and -> ond

Incorrectly integrated errors (pragmatic, functional genetic error typology)

  • Memory errors (problems are in the area of ​​memory):
    The group of miscommunication includes words or parts of words that are very often misspelled.
  • Perception errors (problems are in the area of ​​perception):
    The group of perceptual errors includes all violations of the spelling of words.
    The perceptual errors themselves are often further subdivided, for example into:
    • Perceptual breakdown errors (WD), e.g .: absence of individual sounds, vowels (a-e-i-o-u), consonants (= concurrent sounds);
      missing duplication: came instead of a comb
      lack of stretching (mirror instead of mirror), addition of single sounds, vowels (a-e-i-o-u), consonants (= concurrent sounds); superfluous doubling (inhibitor instead of shirt),
      unnecessary stretching: near nose instead of nose
      Word has no resemblance to the phonetic image of the actually searched word (= word distortion)
    • Perceptual Directional Errors (WR), e.g. Rotations (b - d), reflections (p - q, ie - eim, sequence of letters (Auot - Auto)
    • Perceptual sharpness errors (WT), e.g .: mix-ups of vowels, mix-ups of consonants (b-p, b-d, f-w, ...)
    • Errors in overall perception (WG), e.g .: strings of letters that do not convey the meaning of what is written.
    • Errors in the scope of perception (WU), e.g. The beginnings or endings of words are traditionally forgotten / left out
  • Rule errors (problems lie in the area of ​​rule knowledge and application):
    • The group of rule errors includes errors that are made because certain spelling rules are either not applied correctly or are generally unknown. This includes the “classic” spelling errors, in the form of errors in the upper and lower case of words, errors due to incorrect derivation of the words (word family / word stem), etc.

Secondary manifestations

Secondary manifestations include all reactions of the child to reading and spelling weaknesses / dyslexia and thus all reactions to the primary manifestations described above. This primarily affects the child's psychological state, but also their behavior.
Studies that examined the development of children with reading and writing difficulties or dyslexia (partial performance weakness) over the years describe three different developmental courses.

  1. Children show a significant disruption of work and social behavior.
  2. The reading and spelling weakness has (no) effect on the child's behavior.
  3. The weakness in reading and writing causes severe mental disorders.

Vicious dyslexia

The third aspect is briefly discussed here. Here, in turn, different courses can be determined. The background to this severe mental disorder is usually the frustration that develops over time. As a rule, children enjoy going to school and are willing and motivated to learn. Due to constant failure, however, a vicious circle gradually develops from which the child actually wants to escape. This breakout attempt can take place in different ways. On the one hand, there are children who seek help within themselves, that is, try to protect themselves by shielding themselves from the outside world.Here it becomes clear that outsiders have an important role to play. Constant motivation and encouragement is required, not: scolding and making fun of mistakes!

Children try to escape from the vicious circle using different mechanisms:

  • The child withdraws within himself, fearful of further failure. This variant can be associated with profound psychological problems, such as eating and sleeping disorders or even depressive moods.
  • The child consciously behaves childishly or is conspicuous by other behaviors (aggressive and / or hostile). It tries to cover up its achievements in the written language area through conspicuous behavior.
  • The child builds up an attitude of refusal and tries to wriggle around, sometimes with the most imaginative ideas, about cooperation, additional training, etc. It even invents white lies for this

Children who react more actively to these failures are also more noticeable in the social environment. The children defend themselves with all their might against the pressure that the environment exerts on them. The permanent ones Experiences of failure are not accepted by the child. In order to get the necessary attention, it occurs as a class felon or something similar. in appearance. Those children often do not notice that this attention is then not paired with social recognition, but rather that this behavior is more like one Outsider position developed. A differentiation to the symptoms of ADD / ADHD can be difficult in many cases.
Either way the children try to compensate for their failures. Breaking out of this vicious circle, which continues to intensify, is usually only possible with outside help. Even in the case of a “diagnosed” giftedness, permanent experiences of failure can have permanent consequences. In these cases, it is often not believed that a gifted child is capable of “classic” dyslexia. Such a child is then often subject to comments such as: “You have to know that!”, “That can't work!” etc .. This in turn frustrates the child immensely, so that self-doubts are not uncommon and an undiagnosed dyslexia in the sense of a partial performance weakness even if one is present Giftedness can lead to school disinclination and frustration.

More dyslexia issues

  • Causes of Dyslexia
  • Symptoms of dyslexia
  • Early detection of dyslexia
  • Diagnosing dyslexia
  • Therapy for dyslexia
  • Dyslexia - LRS
  • The reading and spelling weakness (LRS)
  • Partial performance weakness

Related topics

  • ADHD
  • ADS
  • Dyscalculia
  • Giftedness
  • Poor concentration
  • Speech disorders
  • Educational games

A list of all topics that we have published under our "Problems with Learning" page can be found under: Problems with Learning A-Z