In kindergarten, while other students were beginning to read short sentences, Josh Thibeau was still learning the alphabet. “I thought, I can’t read so why even try. I thought it was a waste of time.”
Five to 17 percent of all children in the U.S. have developmental dyslexia. Josh is one of them.
Children with dyslexia — often caused by some difference in typical brain development — have trouble with comprehension because they can’t read text accurately or fluently.
Josh, now 14, has four other siblings, three of whom also have dyslexia. “We are very fortunate because if Josh had been a first child, we would not have noticed any of the signs,” says Josh’s mom Janet Thibeau.
During his early years in school, Josh found it difficult to keep up with his classmates. He was not able to associate letters to the sound they made. “I really hated it because I couldn’t show what kind of person I could be,” says Josh. “Other students were reading books I really wanted to read, but I couldn’t because I still had no idea what sound the alphabet made.”