There's new hope for dyslexic youth facing the formidable task of learning to read. Researchers from Rutgers University in Newark, New Jersey, found that dyslexic children can learn how to activate the part of the brain critical to reading skills. After attending eight weeks of special language training, brain scans showed that such training had improved the children's reading skills.
At the beginning of the study, dyslexic children showed a lack of activity in the part of the brain that controlled language. The children, ages 8 to 12, went through a training program to help them correctly connect sound with letters. By exaggerating and slowing down the sounds, especially letters that sound similar—such as 'b' in 'boy' and 't' in 'toy'—the children learned how to differentiate sounds. By the end of the training, scans showed marked improvement in critical regions of the brain.
The study was published in Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences.