What I See

And Why I Read The Way I Do.


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Note: The following is just one very simple example of a very complex problem. It is not intended to imply that this is the only reading problem with dyslexia (mine or anyone else).

As I discussed earlier {What is dyslexia} it is very difficult to explain, the differences in what we see, for I will never see as a person without dyslexia. Thus, I am attempting to give my best guess at what and how 'normal' people see.

When a person with normal view is reading or even just looking around, they tend to focus in on one point or one word.

For example in the following paragraph, the section in red is an example of the what a NON-dyslexic person would focus on when they reached the word "Singular":


At my alighting I was surrounded by a crowd of people, 
but those who stood nearest seemed to be of better quality. 
They beheld me with an the marks and circumstances of wonder; 
neither, indeed, was I much in their debt, having never till 
then seen a race of mortals so singular in their shapes, habits, 
and countenances.  Their heads were all reclined either to the right 
or the left; one of their eyes turned inward, and the other directly 
up to the zenith.  Their outward garments were adorned with the 
figures of suns, moons, and stars, interwoven with those of fiddles, 
flutes, harps, trumpets, guitars, harpsichords, and many other 
instruments of music, unknown to us in Europe.
-Taken from Gulliver's Travels

A very tight field of view; with basically one word being clear and intelligible.

However, when I look at the same word, my field of view is much larger.


At my alighting I was surrounded by a crowd of people,
but those who stood nearest seemed to be of better quality.
They beheld me with an the marks and circumstances of wonder;
neither, indeed, was I much in their debt, having never till 
then seen a race of mortals so singular in their shapes, habits, 
and countenances.  Their heads were all reclined either to the right 
or the left; one of their eyes turned inward, and the other directly
up to the zenith.  Their outward garments were adorned with the
figures of suns, moons, and stars, interwoven with those of fiddles,
flutes, harps, trumpets, guitars, harpsichords, and many other
instruments of music, unknown to us in Europe.
-Taken from Gulliver's Travels

This is not an exaggeration, it actually is much too small. When I read from a book or magazine, I see most of the page. It is very hard for me to focus on a single word. Without a lot of concentration, I focus on an entire area of text. Thus, when the mind tries to interpret a single word, it takes what appears to be random words from the page. Simply because ALL the words are readable at the same time.


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Copyright © 1996 by Timothy Allen Roach All Rights Reserved.
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Updates: 1997, 1998, 1999, 2000, 2001
Page Last Updated: 8/19/01 7:43:09 PM