boy with dyslexia

20 Encouraging Kids' Books About Dyslexia

The Alphabet War: A Story about Dyslexia

The Alphabet War

A very realistic story about a little boy whose dyslexia was not diagnosed until third grade. Up until that point in time, he struggles with identifying letters, spelling and reading even the most basic site words. While his peers are progressing without challenges, he grows increasingly frustrated and eventually demonstrates disruptive behavior. When he finally receives the helps he needs and understands why he has been struggling, his reading improves nicely and he develops the confidence to excel in other areas.





Empowering Children's Books Featuring Dyslexic Characters

Kids can sometimes feel isolated and left behind when their peers learn to read effortlessly and progress easily through the levels. While lots of children love learning, children with learning disabilities do not always have the same positive experience starting a new school year. They may feel like they are not smart and this lack of confidence can then spill over into other areas of their lives. Parents can help by reading books to their children about characters with  dyslexia. These stories teach young ones that their processing disorder is not a reflection of their intelligence.

Magnificent Meg: A Read-Aloud Book to Encourage Children with Dyslexia

Magnificent Meg

Written by a teacher who has worked with children for more than 15 years, Magnificent Meg is positively affirming book about a girl's journey to read. The message is all about facing challenges head, understanding that some kids learn differently, and that we are all magnificent in our own unique way. There is a helpful guide with great talking points for parents, especially for those just starting down the path of understanding this processing disorder.



 Did You Say Pasghetti? Dusty and Danny Tackle Dyslexia

Did You Say Pasghetti? 

A dog is a boy's best friend in a heartwarming book. Told from the point of view of Dusty the dog, this story combines elements of both humor and gravitas. The reality is that many kids with dyslexia suffer from low self-esteem and bouts of negativity, and Danny is no different. Fortunately, with the unwavering support of Dusty, Danny realizes that everyone is different, lots of kids have struggles, and he can accept his own unique way of learning. 



 Thank You, Mr. Falker

Thank You, Mr. Falker

Patricia Polacco is a beloved children's author and illustrator who shares her personal story about a teacher who saw her potential despite her struggles in school. Trisha was an intelligent student and gifted artist who reached fifth grade and still could not read. Her classmates called her stupid and she believed them. Despite how hard she tries to focus, all the letters and words are jumbled up in her books. She loses her self-confidence until a special teacher, Mr. Falker, finally takes the time to understand and help her.



 Tom's Special Talent 

Tom's Special Talent

Kids with learning disabilities can feel very discouraged in school where there is a lot of focus on reading and writing.  Tom is feeling pretty discouraged as he witnesses his friends complete their assignments easily. When the school sponsors a talent show, it is finally Tom's opportunity to shine. A great title that focuses on the multitude of gifts children possess beyond their ability in the classroom.



 Bookmarks Are People Too 

Here's Hank: Bookmarks Are People Too!

Henry Winkler is the author of Hank Zipzer book series for beginner readers. The lead character, Hank, is a bit of a class clown, albeit unintentionally. He has trouble reading, and truthfully with his other subjects as well, and his behavior is often misinterpreted as defiance. When his school announces they are going to have a class play, he desperately wants to try out for the lead. Hank, however, cannot read the script for try-outs, and lands a non-speaking part. Kids will cheer on Hank straight through to the very happy ending.



 Lily and the Mixed-Up Letters

Lily and the Mixed-Up Letters

School should be a comfortable place where little kids enjoy learning. And this is Lily's experience during her first couple of years in elementary school. But by the time she reaches second grade, she is aware how far behind she has fallen. All of her classmates can read. For Lily, the words and letters are all scrambled. One day her teacher invites the class to read in front of their parents. Finally, Lily garners the courage to talk to her teacher and mother about her struggles. They work together to form a plan to help with her processing disorder. A sweet picture book for young kids just starting out on their reading journey.



 Back to Front and Upside Down

Back to Front and Upside Down!

A class of elementary school students is diligently writing notes to their principal, wishing him a very happy birthday. When Stanley works on his card, all of the letters and words are scrambled, mixed-up, and turned around. He is embarrassed and upset until his classmates come to the rescue. They express empathy for Stanley, and explain that everyone struggles sometimes. A gentle, supportive picture book for young children experiencing their first frustrations with reading.



 Ben and Emma's Big Hit 

Ben & Emma's Big Hit

Like a lot of kids, Ben does not like to read. The letters in the words get all mixed up in his mind and he can't form the right sounds when he tries to read. But what he does like to do is play baseball. He handles strike outs and mistakes on the field with an open and optimistic attitude. Ben knows that if he practices, he will have better success in the next game. With the support of his friend, Emma, he learns to approach reading with the same mindset. Written in font that is designed to help kids with dyslexia read, this story helpful for kids struggling like Ben.


 Knees: The mixed up world of a boy with dyslexia


This is the story of a boy who learns to navigate the highs and lows of his disability. Although school is a challenge, he learns that hard work and perseverance pay off. Fortunately, his basketball skills help boost his self-confidence and help him cope with his learning challenges. The book includes information on famous people who have dyslexia and thrived in their fields. This 100+ page book, broken into chapters with only a couple of sentences on each page, is designed for kids to enjoy.


 Brilliant Bea: A Story for Kids With Dyslexia and Learning Differences

Brilliant Bea

Every child should be so lucky to have a teacher like Ms. Bloom. She realizes that Beatrice is a brilliant storyteller, a talent that sometimes goes unrecognized. So the teacher gives her bright pupil a tape recorder so she can record her imaginative tales. This seemingly simple gesture give Beatrice a huge boost in confidence and helps her form new friendships in the classroom. This inspiring story is a good reminder to children that their intelligence can shine through in many other ways.



 Aaron Slater, Illustrator

Aaron Slater, Illustrator

Aaron Slater is a second grader who happens to love stories. He enjoys listening to them and hopes to one day create his own, but there is one obstacle that persistently gets in his way. Aaron has dyslexia, which hampers his ability to read stories and write the ones spinning around in his head. Refusing to let his learning disability spoil his dreams, Aaron finds a new way to communicate his ideas. A gifted illustrator, this young man is able to tell his stories through pictures. A best-selling book that will inspire every child who has obstacles to overcome. 


 The Owl in the Old Oak Tree and Little Squirrel Gray

The Owl in the Old Oak Tree and Little Squirrel Gray

Gray feels happy and carefree playing in the trees with all of his brother and sister squirrels. When he goes to school, Gray feels out of place and alone. He struggles with reading and writing unlike all the other students in his class. Feel despondent, Gray skips school one day and has the good fortune of meeting a wise owl in the woods. This magnificent bird helps Gray understand more about his struggles and shows him some of his wonderful strengths. A positive and uplifting book for any child coping with a processing issue.




Reading Guides for Kids With Dyslexia

Learning to read is a developmental milestone that most parents take for granted. Some kids may learn earlier than others, but eventually most kids are reading independently by age 6 or 7. Children with dyslexia take a much different path on their reading journey. The sooner that these kids receive a proper diagnosis, the better prepared teachers and parents can be in helping them. While support services are provided in school, it's also good to have tools at home for supplemental reading practice. Here are some of the best guides to help kids


Learn to Read for Kids with Dyslexia: 101 Games and Activities to Teach Your Child to Read

Learning to read can feel like an insurmountable task. This 130+ page activity book is a great tool that provides children with multiple, daily activities designed to improve their auditory processing and letter formation skills. The pages are chock full of games, mazes, and letter matching activities. Kids practice their writing based on sounds and improve their reading skills based on a variety of research-proven methodologies.  


Orton Gillingham Tools For Kids With Dyslexia

 There are 100 activities focusing specifically on letters “b”, “d”, “p” and “q”. Children will practice writing and tracing the letters using a very systematic, repetitive process. There is also a phonetic component to work on identifying missing sounds. A great supplemental workbook for kids working on problems with letter reversal and mix-up.



Tween Novels About Dyslexia 

Tweens will appreciate the stories in these chapter books about kids just like them. Each of these characters is juggling all of the usual social, academic, athletic and family stressors affecting adolescents. Their challenges, especially school-related, are compounded by the fact that they are dyslexic. Tweens will enjoy learning how each of the protagonists handles a learning disability, especially how it has given them the grit and determination to succeed. 


 Two-Minute Drill

Two-Minute Drill

Mike Lupica, prolific writer of middle-grade sports books, covers the topic of dyslexia and friendship in a gripping, coming-of-age novel. The most popular kid in sixth grade is a talented quarterback who has a painful secret he is ashamed to share. When a new kid, Scott Parry, joins the football team, an unlikely friendship forms between the two. While Scott does not have athletic talent, he excels in the classroom. But he, too, has a secret that draws him closer to Chris. A great book that demonstrates the power of friendship and hard work over raw ability to win on the field and in life.



 Close to Famous

Close to Famous

A talented mother/daughter due settles into a new town with dreams of starting over again. They form fast friendships with the locals who appreciate the mother's beautiful singing voice and the daughter's unbelievable baking skills. They have big dreams of success and make inroads overcoming challenges, like the girl's struggle with reading. Just when life seems to be turning a corner, problems from their previous life reappear and threaten their newfound security. A page turner until the very end! 



 Dyslexia is My Superpower Most of the Time

Dyslexia is My Superpower, Most of the Time

A fantastic book for middle-schoolers who can benefit from the real stories of other children and young adults who have found strength in their own reading disability. A collection of over 100 interviews showcases a variety of perspectives, coping mechanisms, and guidance from people who struggle with the same confusing processing disorder.  We particularly like the honest accounts of what has worked, and what clearly hasn't for these individuals. This book is also valuable in helping kids feel a bit more normal and learning that attributes like resilience and work ethic will help them power through.



 My Name Is Brain Brian

My Name is Brain, Brian

An honest account of what it's like to be misunderstood written by an author who experienced the effects of a reading disorder firsthand. In this chapter book, Brian's friends think he is disruptive and horses around in school because he flips his letters when writing. His so-called friends bully him and make fun of his spelling. It is not until a sixth grade teacher diagnosis his dyslexia that Brian finally receives the help he needs. An excellent book for a middle-grade student who will benefit from hearing someone else's story.


 Fish in a Tree

Fish in a Tree

Ally has changed schools quite frequently. Because she has never been in one place for very long, she's been quite adept at hiding her inability to read. She thinks she is dumb, and to hide this secret, she behaves disruptively and is a general problem student. Finally, she lands in a school with a teacher who is determined to get to the bottom of her issues. The teacher ultimately discovers that Ally is dyslexic and he teaches her that it is nothing to hide. She ultimately realizes that she's highly intelligent and has many gifts that are more important than an insignificant label.


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boy with dyslexia

Supportive Books for Kids With Reading Disabilities

It is estimated that between 5 and 15 percent of the US population has a reading disability. Putting it another way, anywhere from 14 to 43 million Americans are effected. Fortunately, the best teachers are identifying signs  much earlier, allowing them to intervene before kids fall too far behind. When children are diagnosed at a young age, reading and learning specialists can then put together an Individualized Education Program (IEP).  This is crucial to a child's success in school and learning to read independently. By providing them with this support, kids will be better prepared to  face their challenges with the right learning tools.

There are a variety of indicators that parents should also be on the lookout for starting before preschool. For instance, children who have delayed speech, have difficulty rhyming words, or can't memorize their address may have a processing disorder. Once a child starts kindergarten, parents can watch for kids struggling to memorize site words, consistently reversing letters and numbers, trouble with multiplication tables, and extreme messiness. Kids may resist going to school and complain of stomachaches or other ailments. Also, if a close family member has dyslexia, there is a higher likelihood that your child may also struggle.

Reading books to your children about characters who have reading disabilities will make them feel less alone. Each of these books tells an inspiring story of someone who, just like your little one, struggles with reading. All of these kids learn to overcome their obstacles in order to realize their goals and dreams. 


Explore Additional Children's Books on Disabilities

Helpful Kids' Books About Autism 

Picture Books With Deaf Characters

Children's Books With Down Syndrome Characters 

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