Reading Comprehension (with ADHD, Dyslexia & Autism)
Reading comprehension relates to how language is processed in the brain and the resulting understanding of the written word. For children and adults with focus issues and learning disorders, reading comprehension is often decreased significantly. Conditions such as attention deficit disorder (ADHD), dyslexia, and autism can contribute to reduced focus and tracking ability, all too often resulting in poor reading skills. The Reading Focus Card was created to address these challenges.
The Reading Focus Card was developed as an effective solution for ADHD, as well as for autistic and dyslexic readers. This sensory-appealing tool helps increase focus and attention span in the case of ADHD and with autism. It helps filter out the other words on a page and improves ability to decode words for dyslexia and other challenges. Although this device benefits those with ADHD, dyslexia, autism and other disorders, it can also be helpful to many other readers who do not experience these issues.
Reading & Learning Disabilities
Reading comprehension can be affected by the following challenges:
- ADHD – An acronym that refers to the neurological condition called attention deficit disorder. Persons with ADHD experience symptoms such as inattentiveness, impulsivity, and sometimes hyperactivity. These symptoms can differ from one individual to another. ADHD was formerly known as ADD, or attention deficit disorder. Children, teens and adults can have ADHD, but the symptoms always begin in childhood. Individuals with ADHD may have difficulty managing time, being organized and following through with tasks among other issues. Adults with ADHD often struggle with setting and reaching goals and even maintaining a job. Challenges with ADHD negatively impact executive functioning skills. Approximately 7 to 13% of school-age children are diagnosed or affected by ADHD in the U.S.
- Dyslexia – A language-based learning disability that is neurological in nature; characterized by difficulties with accurate and/or fluent word recognition and by poor spelling and decoding abilities. Approximately 15-20% of the general population is affected by some form of dyslexia in the U.S.
- Autism – A disorder of neural development characterized by an abnormal absorption with the self, resulting in anti-social responses to people; it is marked by communication issues and a short attention span. Autism can affect individuals in varying degrees. Approximately 1 in 63 individuals is on the autism spectrum in the U.S.
Comprehension problems are frequently related to ADHD, dyslexia and autism. Reading comprehension requires sustained mental effort and attention. Understandably, an ADHD or an autistic reader by definition often will struggle with these skills. Autism also is characterized by shortened attention spans. Dyslexia inhibits a reader to properly understand the text that is read because of the decoding and other issues involved.
Sometimes, ADHD and dyslexia co-exist. The task of reading comprehension is then much more difficult than having ADHD or dyslexia alone. This is a compounded problem because dyslexia does not necessarily respond to those interventions used for ADHD.
Autism & Reading Comprehension
Autism spectrum interventions often involve sensory input to enhance comprehension. Individuals with autism are very visual learners. The sensory-appealing Reading Focus Card provides both visual and tactile stimulation that is not offensive to autistic readers and others with sensory issues. An autistic reader can have a short attention span, so reading comprehension can be very difficult. Helping an autistic individual stay involved in the reading is essential to improving comprehension.
To a person with autism, the “feel” of a tool can be a positive factor. Color is also essential for those with autism. Autistic readers simply need sensory stimulation, and the Reading Focus Card helps both through touch and sight to engage the student more with the reading.