Is this Dyslexia?

I debated on posting this, because I usually don’t like to make my children’s issues too public. But I want people (including my children) to realize that there is nothing shameful about having a different learning style or difficulty. We all learn differently and if we cover it up, it will be much worse down the road. Plus, they are so young, and don’t read my blog, so I decided the benefits outweigh the risks.

I know it’s normal for some young children to write backwards number and letters. But I’m wondering if this is something more. It is so consistent, and each time I think we have it corrected, she reverts back to writing and reading numbers backwards.

I found a developmental disorder, related to Dyslexia, which has to do with mathematics, aptly named Dyscalculia. I’m almost convinced she has an issue. My husband had dyslexia as a child, and I know it can be genetic. At the same time, I don’t always want to run to try to find a disorder when they have difficulty.

If at all, I think the level is mild, because right now, the only measurable symptom is “An inability to read a sequence of numbers, or transposing them when repeated, such as turning 56 into 65.” However, I really want to catch it early before the more advanced skill-deficiencies show themselves.

Have you had any experience with these learning challenges, and do you have any advice? I also hope this may help someone who is wondering to try to see a professional and figure out what’s going on.

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About Sarah Pinnix

I'm a mom, blogger, vlogger, libertarian. I love Jesus, and my husband, too. Social Media Strategist for a Non-Profit (All statements here are solely my own)


  1. Coma Girl says:

    How old is she?

    I won’t pretend to know much, but I think it’s normal for young kids to write numbers backwards.


  2. hayesatlbch says:

    Coma Girl is right. Age is important.Watch to determine if the behavior starts to extinguish in second grade.

    Having many reversals at the end of second grade is a red flag and needs to be investigated.

    Also , what time frame are you talking about “each time I think we have it corrected, she reverts back to writing and reading numbers backwards.”? days, weeks ,all school year?

    Reversals are the major cause of false positive indications of dyslexia and needless worries.

    Again age is important.


  3. Thank you! She is only six, so I know I shouldn’t freak out. We work on correcting it, then it’s a week later, and it happens again. She’s also left handed, I don’t know if that makes a difference.


  4. Jen @ One Moms World says:

    Hmm.. that is weird. I wonder with her being left handed if that is why she is doing it? Has her teacher said anything about it?

    I would just keep working with her over the summer and see what trends you keep seeing. Maybe ask the teacher if she has any advice too for you. I know M doesn’t do this but when I go in her classroom, I do see kids artwork that has thing backwards, so it may just be the age.

    *hugs* mama!!!


  5. Anonymous says:

    I have to tell you we just got done in the second grade and are finally not writing some letters b,d,p,9,2,z and a few others. It is a struggle for our kids but I don’t think there is anything wrong.


  6. Opps the above comment is mine. lol


  7. Anonymous says:

    Found your post via a dyslexia alert I have … as an adult dyslexia I'll throw a couple of thoughts out:

    1 You note that your husband "had" dyslexia as a child. Unfortunately, dyslexia like any LD issue does not go away … it's life long. We learn, if provided with the support and skills to work around the issue with varying degrees of success.

    2 A family history of LD is one indicator that professionals will look at to determine if your child has an LD issue.

    3 With a 6 old child, you and the school should be getting a sense of strengths and weakness that face your child. Have a formal meeting with the teacher … see where your child is re the peer group, re their developmental age etc. Also see if the mirroring is causing frustration or comments [from the other children or from your child]. Children [even vary young ones] are real good at picking up the "odd person out" … it's a potential flag.

    4 Consider having an assessment. Even if you have to pay for it, it will provide a wealth of information that can help going forward.

    5 Deal with the situation now! The next grade only adds to the work load. If your child starts to fall behind or have problems, then the LD is just the 1st of many potential issues you will need to address [i.e stress, anxiety, withdrawing etc].

    6 Left handiness is not a good indicator [even though I'm left handed]. Rather, I would check how they write, placement of paper on desk. Most people [parents, teachers & others] automatically place paper on the desk as if the individual is right handed. It's all wrong for left handed people and leads to "hook" or over the top writing. Your child needs to write down hill, not up! A tip, place the paper square to the table edge, then rotate so the left top side of the page is higher than the right side. If it's reversed then the page is set up for a right handed person and needs to be corrected. Also see what side of the desk they sit on re their classmates … elbow to elbow is not great.

    Finally, this is your child, enjoy then and let them have fun.


  8. John Hayes says:

    Age 6 , right in the spot for too common to distinguish between the groups of dyslexic or lots of kids do too.

    Usually there is a time period over which the reversals will continue but occur less often and finally stop for those without dyslexia.

    Reversals really aren’t all that common as a general dyslexia characteristic. They are more of a visual dyslexia problem.

    Since visual dyslexia only affects about 10% of dyslexics and the visual problems can be removed ( I sell See Right Dyslexia Glasses that remove visual problems).

    The more important question is if she has any language or auditory processing problems that are common to the vast majority of dyslexics and where early intervention is best.

    If she can answer questions about a story read to her and tell a story in a sequential manner about her day at an age appropriate level with correct vocabulary she is not severely dyslexic.

    Remember that at age 6 the standard isn’t doing everything right but is her development within normal standards for being 6.

    For information about visual dyslexia you can visit .


  9. Milehimama says:

    I know some people who have had success lowering the contrast? You could try getting colored report covers (red, green, or yellow), and letting her do worksheets on those with a wipe off marker or crayon. Might help.

    Colored filters often help dyslexic children reading, too.


  10. I know I am reading this late…I’ve been a little busy, but one of the test I have to give in Pre-K is a developmental milestone test. It’s developmental range is from birth to 72 months (or 6) one of the last questions on the cognitive area is if the children can write their numbers 1-19, with the directions to count it right if numbers are reversed (written backwards) but in the correct order. That is saying that at 72 months it is developmentally appropriate for children to reverse numbers when they write them. This is a nationally recognized developmental test. If you have more questions about it, feel free to email me.


  11. Thank you SO much, Helen ,and everyone for the helpful comments! I feel really confident now that this is no cause for great concern, but I will keep watching closely.


  12. How old? Both my daughters did this. My youngest is better in school & I thinks she stopped doing that during 1st grade. She is finishing 2nd & I think I caught her do it once but not sure if she was being snotty with the homework or not.

    My oldest is in 6th grade. She did it more. I think I even caught her do it once this year. I think she pretty much stopped doing it in regularly though in 2nd grade.

    It is normal though, not sure what age they are supposed to stop at.


  13. I just saw your comment, lol. If she is 6 then yeah it is totally normal at that age!


  14. ResourcefulMommy says:

    Okay, so here’s my full disclosure. I have an MSEd. in psychological services in education. There – I outed myself.

    Yes, there is something called dyscalculia related to numbers and also dyspraxia related to writing. With all of these disorders there is a high rate of co-morbidity – meaning you get a touch of more than one thing.

    At the age of 6 numbers and letters get turned all which ways for many kids. How is her understanding? Is she getting it? And it’s just not coming out? That’s important to know.

    It NEVER hurts to get these things checked out as long as you don’t stress her out – keep it casual. Talk to the school and check about free testing in your county. Usually the tests at that age are kind of fun – tons of attention! – and there’s no risk. She either gets help or you’re told that all is well.

    Keep us updated!



  15. Thank you Amy!!!! You have all kinds of tricks up your sleeve! Last night we were practicing writing the teens. She told me that she wrote the six first because you say “six-teen.” She was sounding it out!

    Also, my mom is left handed, and she said she used to watch right-handed people write and then do it backwards. That made me laugh!

    And you’re right! If she doesn’t get it by the end of the summer, it wouldn’t hurt to get her tested.


  16. Dyslexia treatment says:

    Hey even i think its normal and as you said she is only 6. She is too small to draw any conclusion. don't panic. Just wait for her to grow up.


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