Thursday 15 September 2011

Happy days for dyslexia

Arthur Fonzarelli aka The Fonz is perhaps the best known character from the show Happy Days, which just in case you did not know, was 'filmed before a live studio audience'. My memories of the Fonz... him walking in to Al's Diner real cool and banging the jukebox with that famous 'aayyy'.

Well the Fonz may well have closed his appearances on Happy Days but that does not mean that the actor who played him cannot still make headlines as today's revelation about Henry Winkler demonstrate. Mr Winkler received an honorary OBE (Officer of the Order of the British Empire) from HRH the Queen's representative recently for his various services to people with dyslexia as reported by the BBC.

In other reports from earlier this year, Mr Winkler discusses his own childhood and the problems he faced at school until his diagnosis received in adulthood. I have yet to cover dyslexia and related diagnoses on this blog but perhaps will at some point. For now, these are certainly happy days for the Fonz and happy days for the work he continues to do to raise the profile of reading and writing problems which a significant proportion of children and adults continue to face.


  1. I am of the notion that autism and dyslexia may be related. From what I have read of dyslexics, most have the same visual representation of thought equated with autism language aquisition. My son could be considered dyslexic or autistic or adhd, depending on who gave the label. It was, in fact, the schools that gave him a label of autism, perhaps because it paid more than dyslexia. It all boils down to money,eh?

  2. Thanks for the comment. I would tend to agree that there may indeed be some commonalities between dyslexia and autism. The cognitive 'styles' (sorry for the psychology-speak) in terms of things like perception is perhaps an important area which some authors have already tried to tie together as per this example from Manuel Casanova and his minicolumn views:
    I have to say that I have always been interested in other the manifestations linked to dyslexia and the 'overlap' seen in autism. So things like fine and gross motor control and the issue of 'clumsiness' which seems to be apparent in a proportion of cases of each diagnosis:
    It does make me wonder whether 'timing' might be a key issue to the perceptual side of both conditions? (Just speculating)


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