Elementary school children hold up flags from around the world.

This in-depth guide focuses on common struggles and strategies for students with language difficulties in the foreign language classroom

Given that dyslexia is a language-based learning disability, it is not surprising that for many dyslexics learning another language can be very difficult. Therefore, passing the foreign language requirement in high school (and college) can be daunting. We recommend talking with your school before your freshman year as a high school student as to the requirement. Some schools will waive the requirement, but you will need to consider this carefully as many colleges and universities will want that foreign language coursework when you apply. Spanish, with its one-to-one correspondence between sounds and letters, may prove easier for some students. Given the emphasis we place on learning Latin and Greek roots during intervention, Latin may be a good choice for some students, particularly because it is a written language and they do not also need to learn pronunciation and conversational rules. Some schools allow American Sign Language (ASL) as an alternative for credit. If a waiver is needed, the process can be arduous, so start early. Here is a helpful blog about one family's journey with this issue. 

IDA's fact sheet, At-Risk Students and the Study of Foreign Language in School can help educators understand how to assist a student with a language-based learning disability with learning a new language. The sheet explains the nature of foreign-language learning for an at-risk student, the difficulties a student with LD may experience in a foreign language classroom, and more.

Descargar IDA's Sólo Los Hechos, Alumnos en riesgo y el estudio de segundas lenguas en la escuela.