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English class and dyslexia

I couldn't understand it; at the age of ten, I couldn't spell or write words, and I couldn't read or comprehend basic passages. My parents and teachers couldn't help but think I disliked school and homework. The worst punishment I got was being sent to a boarding school so that I could spend more time reading. I started taking art classes and was still the top pupil. I could do very fine arts and was always rewarded for them. Why not do it in English? I suffered from dyslexia.
Growing up with dyslexia in a classroom with other students made me a professional. I couldn't figure out how they were learning that quickly. How they could write, spell, read, and comprehend English remained a mystery. Why couldn’t I do the same and we were of the same age and race? I did not understand them; they did not understand me. After the arts teacher realized I had dyslexia, I was put in a special education program. I had to learn simple words with numerous repetitions. A three-letter word appeared so simple to be written but I could not just write it. Why was I so dump? I had to learn all these about me. I had to learn why my classmates were so different as well.

One thing remained true; the teachers were a problem and I was a problem to them as well. They had to be patient with me and I had to reciprocate the patience in learning what they continually said. I could get annoyed when the teacher had to repeat a three-letter word and I could not just write it correctly. For example, I would always reverse letters, bog for dog. I also knew one thing; I was like other children of my age and I had the capability of doing well as they did. This encouraged me and kept me patient under the leadership of my special teachers. I was confident that my condition was not permanent and could not hinder me from scaling the heights to my dreams. I took it as a test of time and remained committed to overcoming the learning difficulties. In addition, the arts teacher kept encouraging me he had the same difficulties in childhood and he overcame; I encouraged myself, why not me?

Langston Hughes’s poem and my experience compares in a number of ways. First, we were all challenged at some point; I had a learning difficulty and he was of different race from the classmates and the teacher. Second, he had the conviction that being a person of color did not make him any different from others the same way I felt that my condition did not limit me from doing what others could do. Additionally, his poem brings out the point that learning is influenced by self and others around us; we become a combination of who we are and how others affect us. This was the same case in my childhood; my arts teacher influenced my life and up to date I identify some aspects that remind me of him. Finally, it is possible to be surrounded by doubts in the process of learning; in my narration, I doubted if I would ever be like other students and Hughes wondered whether his page would be like that of the Whites.

August 18, 2021

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