Famous Dyslexics: ‘The Help’ star, Octavia Spencer

You may know movie star Octavia Spencer for her Academy Award-winning role as Minnie Jackson in The Help (2011), which launched her into Hollywood’s inner circle of celebs.

But did you know that this dyslexic actress is also a children’s book author?


She struggled to read from a young age. In a recent interview, she describes knowing that she was different from other kids when she tried to pick up a book to read at age 6.

What turned things around for her? Well it all started when she fell in love… with a fictional character! She started reading the children’s detective novels, Encyclopedia Brown, and was totally hooked.

“I know that it takes me a lot longer to read than most people… but I just stayed engaged through reading mysteries. It just opened my world.”

And now she’s giving back to the world in the same way through her children’s novels. Her character is a girl named Randi Rhodes, Ninja Detective. Perhaps Encyclopedia Brown has finally met his match!

For a short clip of Octavia talking about her dyslexia, watch this:

DSCN0462Sarah Forrest is a Literacy Specialist for the Easyread System, an online program for children with dyslexia, reading and spelling difficulties, poor comprehension, and more. Get a free 10 lesson trial at www.oxfordlearningsolutions.com

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Reading has suddenly come together for her!

Reading has suddenly come together for Savannah. Last night she was even reading a chapter book (the Junie B. Jones series) and only found a few words a bit hard or unfamiliar. She is quite thrilled, and so is the rest of the family. We will, of course, continue with the lessons. We want her to succeed in spelling, too.

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Does musical dyslexia exist?

A recent article explored whether or not there is such a thing as “musical dyslexia“.


After all, musical notation is a type of language, and some people do struggle to learn it. A neuroscientist has proposed the name “dymusia”.

It has never been proven, but research is being done to pinpoint what is happening in the brain when musicians suffer brain damage and lose their ability to read music.

Reading music, unlike reading text, is not a phonological process, so it has different neurological roots of difficulty. We’ve found 8 main causes of reading difficulty that underlie most dyslexia diagnoses.

Have you ever tried to learn musical notation? Did you find it hard or easy?

DSCN0462Sarah Forrest is a Literacy Specialist for the Easyread System, an online program for children struggling with reading, spelling, dyslexia and more. Get a free trial at www.easyreadsystem.com


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He’ll now sit down to read on his own!

Hello Easyread Friends,

It has been a little more than a year since Jaylen completed the course and we wanted to give you a status update. It took a little longer than we anticipated, but we finally did get “reading lift off” I think you call it. Jaylen loves to read now, and is currently reading above his grade level!! He will grab a book and sit down to read silently or aloud at home and we are so happy. He loves to read and is even volunteering to read aloud in class(something he would never have done in the past). We wanted to say thank you for a job well done. I don’t think he would have reached this level without the help of Easyread.

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Took an exam for the grade above hers!

She just took the National Mythology Exam, which required her to read D’Aulaire’s Greek Mythology (but since August she has read every Greek mythology book she/I could find). The test, published by a Classical Association in the US has long questions and long multiple choice answers to choose from–I think she did really well (I’ll let you know!)–she took the exam for the grade above hers, which was just incredible. I would love to keep her learning spelling–your method works so well!

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