The Primary School Signs: Ages 7-12 Years

Pupil’s Name: _________________________________

Date: _____________


The Primary School Signs: Ages 7-12 Years.

If a pupil, between 7 and 12 years of age, displays any of the following characteristics, the teacher should intervene. The presence of a number of these characteristics or those on the previous checklist for 5-7 year olds may indicate that the child has dyslexic learning difficulties. When considering these characteristics, it is important to remain mindful of the following:

a.     No child will have all these characteristics.

b.    Some characteristics are more common than others.

c.     All children will have some of these characteristics to some degree.

d.    The number of symptoms seen in a particular child does not give an indication as to whether the dyslexia is mild or severe. It is important to consider if the behaviours are chronic and appear in clusters.



1.    ___Has continued difficulty reading text aloud or silently

2.   ___Reading achievement is below expectation

3.     ___Is slow at discerning and learning prefixes, suffixes, root words and other morphemes as part of reading and spelling strategies

4.     ___Poor reading accuracy, fluency or speed interferes with reading comprehension



1.  ___Spelling is inappropriate for age and general ability (e.g., spelling the same word differently on the same page, use of bizarre spelling patterns, frequent letter omissions, additions and transpositions)

2.    ___Poor spelling contributes to poor written expression (e.g., may avoid use of unfamiliar words)


Arithmetic: difficulty in performing arithmetic operations or in understanding basic concepts

1.    ___Experiences language-related problems in math (e.g., when reading word problems and directions, confuses numbers and symbols)



1.     ___Still confuses letter sequences (e.g., soiled for solid; left for felt

2.     ___Is unable to learn multiplication tables by rote

3.     ___Still confuses some directional words (e.g., left and right)

4.     ___Has slow or poor recall of facts

5.     ___Forgets to bring in or hand in homework

6.    ___Has difficulty remembering what day or month it is

7.    ___Has difficulty remembering his/her own telephone number or birthday


Reasoning: difficulty in organising and integrating thoughts

1.   ___Lacks understanding of other people’s body language and facial expressions

2.   ___Has trouble with non-literal or figurative language (e.g., idioms, proverbs)

3.   ___Has poor planning and organisational skills

4.   ___Has poor time management


Motor coordination: difficulty coordinating eye and hand

1. ___Has slow, dysfluent and/or illegible handwriting



1.   ___Uses avoidance tactics when asked to read orally or write

2.     ___Lacks self-confidence and has a poor self-image