Abstract SCHOLASTIC failure is a common problem in every school and in all grades. Its etiologies are many, including: family attitudes, intelligence, motivation, physical defects, and emotional disorders. One of the common and least recognized causes of scholastic failure is language disability.1,2 Language disability has been called word blindness, dyslexia, strephosymbolia, congenital alexia, and dysgraphia. When it is present, it can cause emotional maladjustment and underachievement or failure, and is a chronic handicap to the pupil. It has been said that as many as 10% to 15% of students have this handicap; and because of the anxieties and pressures caused by it in both the child and his family, it is imperative that physicians and teachers be well-informed about this condition.3,4,5 Language involves all of the aspects of handling words: reading, writing, spelling, and speech. The range of ability runs from the child who reads at the age of References 1. Tomkins, C.: The Reporter at Large: The Last Skill Required , New Yorker 39:127-128 ( (Sept 14) ) 1963. 2. Gallagher, J.R.: Can't Spell, Can't Read , Atlantic Monthly 181:35-39 ( (June) ) 1948. 3. Gallagher, J.R.: Specific Disability: A Cause of Scholastic Failure , New Eng J Med 242:436-440 ( (March 23) ) 1950.Crossref 4. Ketchum, E.G.: " Reading Disorders ," in Nelson, W.E. (ed.): Textbook of Pediatrics , ed 3, Philadelphia: W. B. Saunders Co., 1959, pp 95-97. 5. Gillingham, A.: The Language Function , Independent School Bull ( (Jan) ) 1951, pp 6-8. 6. Kottmeyer, W.: Teacher's Guide to Remedial Reading , St. Louis: Webster Pub. Co., 1959, pp 88-90. 7. Heller, T.M.: Word-Blindness: A Survey of the Literature and Report of Twenty-Eight Cases , Pediatrics 31:4, 669-691 ( (April) ) 1963. 8. Gallagher, J.R.: Specific Language Disability , Clin Proc Child Hosp 16:3-15 ( (Jan) ) 1960. 9. Money, J.: Reading Disability; Progress and Research Needs in Dyslexia , Baltimore: Johns Hopkins University Press, 1962. 10. Kussmaul, A.: " Disturbance of Speech ," in Ziemssen's Cyclopedia of the Practice of Medicine , London: Sampson Low, 1878, chap 14, p 770. 11. Kerr, J.: Howard Prize Essay of the Royal Statistical Society , J Statistical Soc 60:613, 1897. 12. Morgan, W.P.: A Case of Congenital Word-Blindness , Brit Med J 2:1378, 1896.Crossref 13. Norrie, E.: Word-Blindness in Denmark: Its Neurological and Emotional Aspects , Independent School Bull 59-60:8-12 ( (April) ) 1960. 14. Orton, S.T.: Reading, Writing, and Speech Problems in Children , New York: W. W. Norton & Co., Inc., 1937. 15. Drew, A.I.: A Neurologic Appraisal of Familial Congenital Word-Blindness , Brain 79:440, 1956.Crossref 16. Hermann, K.: A Neurologic Study of Reading Disability and of Related Language Disorders , Springfield, Ill: Charles C Thomas, Publisher, 1959. 17. Hermann, K., and Norrie, E.: Is Congenital Word-Blindness a Hereditary Type of Gerstmann's Syndrome? , Psychiat Neurol 136:59, 1958.Crossref 18. Bender, L.: " Problems in Conceptualization and Communication in Children With Developmental Alexia ," in Hoch, P. H., and Zubin, J. (eds.): Psychopathology Communication , New York: Grune & Stratton, Inc., 1958. 19. Skydsgaard, H.: Medfodt Ordblindhed, om Ordblindesagen i Danmark, thesis, 1944. 20. Hallgren, B.: Specific Dyslexia (Congenital Word-Blindness): Clinical and Genetic Study , Acta Psychiat Neurol , (suppl 65) , 1-287, 1950. 21. Fernald, G.M.: Remedial Techniques in Basic School Subjects , New York: McGraw-Hill Book Co., 1943. 22. Borel-Maisonny, S.: La Dyslexie et sa Prevention , Readaption (Paris) 58:15, 1959. 23. Gillingham, A., and Stillman, B.W.: Remedial Training for Children With Specific Disability in Reading, Spelling, and Penmanship , Bronxville, NY: private printing, 1946.
American Journal of Diseases of Children – American Medical Association
Published: Sep 1, 1965