Speld teacher Jean Roulston in the book room at Community
House in Dunedin yesterday, with the resources she uses to
help dyslexics. Photo by Linda Robertson.
More dyslexic adults are returning to the classroom to
improve their reading and writing to cope in a modern working
world, a Dunedin teacher says.
Speld teacher Jean Roulston said she had provided private
one-on-one tuition for dyslexics since 1991.
Dyslexia was a reading disability that occurs when the brain
does not properly recognise and process certain symbols, Ms
Roulston, herself dyslexic, said.
She had taught people between the ages of 5 and 6 with
dyslexia, who were an ''equal mix'' of male and female.
Although half of them were from school referrals, every year
more adult students signed up because the modern workplace
required writing skills, she said.
''You used to be able to hide it [dyslexia], but there's no
hiding anymore. Today there is a paper trail for
Dyslexics could see the ''big picture'', often acted on
impulse and could be successful in business, she said.
However, they struggled with details, but if they were in
positions of power they had administrators to handle those.
The most dyslexic student she had was an 8-year-old boy, who
wrote her a story using just the letters K, L, M and N, she
He was now 22 and studying towards a chemistry degree, she
Speld was holding a two-day introduction to specific learning
disabilities in Dunedin next month, she said.
• Affects about 7% of New Zealand school pupils.
• Affects people of all backgrounds and
• Is not because of a lack of intelligence or
desire to learn.
• Dyslexic parents likely to have dyslexic
• Often goes unidentified until the adult years.