Four Famous People with Dyslexia

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This week we’re looking at four famous people with dyslexia who flourished in their respective fields.

Leonardo da Vinci

Leonardo da Vinci was an Italian Renaissance polymath, celebrated for his technological skill and creativity. He is also famous for many of his many paintings including Mona Lisa and The Last Supper.

Although there is no way of truly knowing if Leonardo was dyslexic, many researchers have suggested that he may have been. One indication is his use of mirror writing, which is a skill shared by many left-handed dyslexic people. Furthermore, his spelling was often quite irregular, but his illustrations were extremely precise.

Read more here.

Steven Spielberg

Steven Spielberg is one of the most successful and influential filmmakers in the world, known for his work as a director, screenwriter and producer. He also co-founded the DreamWorks film studio.

Although Spielberg was born in 1946, his dyslexia was not diagnosed until 2007. When talking about dyslexia, he said, “It is more common than you ever could imagine. You’re not alone. There are ways to accelerate your reading skills, to accelerate your comprehension. There are ways to deal with it. It’s not an incurable thing – it’s something you’re going to have for the rest of your life, but you can dart between the raindrops to get where you want to go. It will not hold you back.”

Read more here.

Tommy Hilfiger

Hilfiger founded the Tommy Hilfiger Corporation in 1984, which went public in 1992 and quickly became known for its menswear collection. The Tommy Hilfiger logo, a red, white, and blue rectangle, is world-recognised. In 1995, the Council of Fashion Designers of America named Hilfiger as the Menswear Designer of the Year.

Hilfiger never attended college and he claims that his lack of business or design training was advantageous in terms of marketing because he thought differently to other designers and was able to make his brand stand out.

Of his dyslexia, he says: “I performed poorly at school and was perceived as stupid because of my dyslexia. I still have trouble reading. I have to concentrate very hard at going left to right, left to right, otherwise my eye just wanders to the bottom of the page.”

Read more here.

Prince Charles

Charles, Prince of Wales, is the eldest son of Elizabeth II, Queen of the United Kingdom and Commonwealth Realms. He is the heir apparent (next in line to the throne).

He broke tradition by becoming the first heir apparent to attend school instead of being educated by a private tutor. Despite being placed in excellent schools with the best available learning resources, Prince Charles struggled with learning to read. Perhaps because of his experiences at school, Prince Charles created the Prince’s Teaching Institute – an independent educational charity to help children with similar difficulties in the classroom. The PTI believes that ‘young people's opportunities in life are maximised by having inspiring teachers, who are knowledgeable and passionate about their subjects’ and help ‘teachers to rediscover their love of their subject’.

Read more here.

21 Aug 2018
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"Thank goodness for Spellzone during this remote learning phase. The site is easy for students to navigate independently and they're really enjoying the activities and spelling games. You get an awful lot for your money with Spellzone. Really reassuring is the very prompt response with helpdesk queries. I've very rarely needed the helpdesk, but when I have, the issue has been addressed and sorted within a very short time."

Sarah Taggart, Oasis Academy Lord's Hill