Category Archives: Dyslexia

Dr. Pat Sekel Explains Dyslexia

Dr. Pat Sekel, our local expert on dyslexia, explains what dyslexia really is. There has been so much misunderstanding, amateur explanation, and pre-scientific explanation hanging around, that very few people have an accurate grasp of what is going on. Dr. Sekel came to our studios back in 2010. During the 1990s, after the invention of the CT scan and the MRI, we gained a lot of knowledge about how the brain works. Education is dragging its feet, but advances have been made. To the extent that we can understand what dyslexia is, then we can have a better chance at helping students who struggle because of it.


Dyslexia is NOT merely switching letters. Dyslexia is NOT something that children grow out of. Dyslexia is real. Dyslexia does often cause problems with school work.

Dyslexia is genetic. It has been known since the time of Socrates. Therefore, it is not like other ailments that were only newly discovered. It is not like problems that have become common only within the past decade, so that it is reasonable to look for preventions. Dyslexia has been around a long time.

It is now thought that dyslexia is a slow auditory processing. Dr. Sekel will explain. There are ways to train the brain to speed up that processing – somewhat. There are ways to teach reading and spelling that permit the student who has dyslexia to do better. Generally, this consists of teaching rules in a logical way — something that public school adamantly, ignorantly, and hurtfully refuses to do. (Please get a copy of my English Spelling Patterns, written for dyslexics and available on


Dyslexia is often accompanied by a heightened ability to deal with the 3D world. For instance, can you picture a slice of pie on a plate? Can you picture in your mind that same slice of pie upside down, floating in the air, off the plate? Why not? I find that easy. Anyone with dyslexia would. Why can’t you? Maybe for the same reason that I still had typos in my college paper after I proofed it 12 times. LOL

There is a lot more to be said about dyslexia and helping students with dyslexia. The point we make here is 1) this is not a death knell 2) we do know what this problem is and 3) there are people and methods that can help. I let out of the bag that I clearly have dyslexia. I am also PHI BETA KAPPA (meaning a member of the the most prestigious honor society) and did extremely well in school. Your children can too. Just have faith and get the practical ideas/help you need.

Dr. Swank Overcomes Dyslexia, Learning Disabilities with Individualized Approach

Dr. Linda Swank argues for the individual approach in overcoming dyslexia and other learning disabilities. Back in 2009, Dr. Swank of the Swank Enrichment Center in Austin on Bee Caves Road shares with us how they help children with academic problems, especially “dyslexia.” With her PhD in speech and language as a grounding, she developed a unique approach to helping children. Rather than rely on statistical testing and labeling, they work individually with the child and parents. The individualized approach avoids the labeling. It avoids the varieties of definitional problems that “dyslexia” presents. It avoids the denominationalism that special educators and doctors and therapists find themselves in. It addresses the presenting academic problems. Many have overcome their problems with the center’s approach.

While her methods may be controversial, I would say the proof is in the pudding. Her method is much in contrast to what the public schools do and much in contrast to what the College of Education at The University of Texas now teaches about dyslexia. However, the Swank Center has been in Austin for decades and has helped many children and worried parents. There is little value, in my view, in building a “dyslexia orthodoxy.” Rather, helping individual children is out aim. Differing approaches should be very much welcomed, in my view, in order that more children might be helped, after finding the right approach for them.


Please note that this is a rerun, and announces that next week we will have a doctor/researcher to address the controversial aspects of immunizations. That episode will NOT air next week. That doctor/researcher was Andrew Wakefield and may be accessed by searching the website or the list of podcasts on the podcast host. If you find a search page full of old or false news that he was discredited, and nothing on a reversal of same, then doubt your search engine. He was a dramatically respected world class researcher before he ran aground of pharmaceutical companies’ profiteering. The center he founded in Austin lives on, as does he, entirely exonerated, if bewildered at the persecution. Listen to our interview of him, and consider for yourself if he seems like a decent level headed scientist… or something else.

We do hope to soon run an episode on the labeling issue that Dr. Swank brings up. Let us know if you want an explanation of the statistical analyses that Dr. Swank brings up.


We really enjoyed having Dr. Swank and she evidently really enjoyed being with us. Notice that heartfelt agreement at the end. It is unfortante that we haven’t heard from her since. Don’t be like that! Let us hear from you. What issues do you want addressed? Please leave your comments and requests. Most of all, sign up, letting us know that you are a Lioness, part of our tribe. Let us pray for you. Contribute to the cause!

Swank Enrichment Center