Guest Post by Jen Bardsley: Book Review: Overcoming Dyslexia

Jennifer Bardsley, who visited last week with a great post on how to encourage kids to read new books, is back with a book review on an interesting and often misunderstood subject: Dyslexia.

A beautiful book about overcoming dyslexia.

When I was a brand new teacher, I once had a third grade student tell me to “hold the book steady Teacher, because the letters are moving.”  This was a major red flag!  Ever since, I have been on the hunt for resources to help me better understand dyslexia, which was what my student struggled with.  That’s why I was so excited to read The Wild Book by Margarita Engle.  This is a book for middle grade readers that tells the story of Fefa, who grows up in turn-of-the-century Cuba. Fefa struggles with “word blindness”, aka dyslexia.

The Wild Book is written as a collection of poems that together tell a complex and engaging story.  It has an extremely low word-count, which makes it approachable for struggling readers.    Most importantly, The Wild Book looks and feels like a regular novel.  The cover art by Yuyi Morales is absolutely beautiful.  No student would feel ashamed for having this book in her arms, even though it is a book about a tween’s struggle with dyslexia.

I have never read anything by Newbery Honor winner Margarita Engle before, but she is now on my list of authors to check out!    

Jennifer Bardsley writes the parenting column I Brake for Moms for The Everett Daily Herald. Her dream is to spark a national conversation about how massive parental involvement is the key to high quality education. When she’s not reading books with her kids or tripping over their toys, she blogs about early education at Teaching My Baby to Read.


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