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Dyslexia—when spelling problems impair writing acquisition

Medical X-Press – Staff Writer

“Dyslexia is a reading disorder that affects the ability to adopt the automatic reflexes needed to read and write. Several studies have sought to identify the source of the problems experienced by individuals with dyslexia when they read. Little attention, however, has been paid to the mechanisms involved in writing. CNRS Professor Sonia Kandel and her team studied the purely motor aspects of writing in children diagnosed with dyslexia. Their results show that orthographic processing in children with dyslexia is so laborious that it can modify or impair writing skills, despite the absence of dysgraphia in these children. The findings of this study are published in the November 2017 edition of Cognitive Neuropsychology.”(more)

Read it and weep: Kids are still not embracing nonfiction, despite campaign

The Washington Post – Jay Mathews

“I have ideas on what books are good for kids as holiday gifts, but first some sad news. U.S. schools have been trying for years to encourage more reading of nonfiction, a movement heartily endorsed by us underappreciated nonfiction writers. But it’s not working. The national What Kids Are Reading report says children’s nonfiction reading is up less than 10 percent since 2009. No more than 30 percent of K-12 students read that stuff. What to do? My only option is to give gift buyers some clues as to what nonfiction seems most attractive to children these days.”(more)

Manning: Reading to kids key to their learning

The Boston Herald – Maureen Manning

“November is Family Literacy Month, a time when schools, libraries and literacy organizations shine a spotlight on the importance of parents and children reading together. Parents are a child’s first teacher, and are often the driving force behind a child’s love of reading. Not only can remarkable bonds form through reading together, but also, family literacy has a direct impact on a child’s success later in life. The National Center for Education Statistics identifies being read to as the single most important activity, for children not yet in school, to build skills needed for future academic success.”(more)

How preschool teachers feel about science matters, new research finds

The Hechinger Report – Lillian Mongeau

“Whether or not preschool teachers offer science lessons and activities in their classrooms depends largely on how comfortable they are in the topic, according to new research from Michigan State University. Teachers in the study “were very nervous that they were going to teach science inaccurately to children,” said Hope Gerde, an associate professor of human development and family studies at Michigan State and the lead author on the study. “That was keeping them from engaging in science at all.”(more)

Literacy Builds Life Skills as Well as Language Skills

The New York Times – Perri Klass, M.D.

“Schoolchildren who read and write at home with their parents may build not only their academic literacy skills, but also other important life and learning skills, a recent study found. The project, a study by researchers at the University of Washington, followed children for five years, either grades one through five or three through seven. It looked at their reading and writing activities at home, their school progress and their skills, both according to their parents’ reports and according to annual assessments.”(more)

3 Literacy Practices That Work

Edutopia – Nell K. Duke

“In the post “What Doesn’t Work: Literacy Practices We Should Abandon,” I wrote, “The number one concern that I hear from educators is lack of time, particularly lack of instructional time with students. It’s not surprising that we feel a press for time. Our expectations for students have increased dramatically, but our actual class time with students has not. Although we can’t entirely solve the time problem, we can mitigate it by carefully analyzing our use of class time, looking for [and doing away with] what Beth Brinkerhoff and Alysia Roehrig (2014) call ‘time wasters’.”(more)