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470168 tn?1237471245

Problems with literacy and numeracy

My son is 7 with a diagnosis of autistic spectrum disorder, severe communication disorder, sensory integration difficulties.  He is at mainstream school.  He has no obsessions/rituals/rigid routines.  He has expressive language aged 7 (although he does have delayed echolalia) and receptive language is assessed at around age 3.  

He was ambidextrous up until last year and still occasionally swops hands eg. writing with right hand, painting with left hand.  Prior to school he had never coloured, drawn etc and refused to do so because he wanted an exact repetition of what he had seen.  He also didn't seem to know where/how to start drawing/writing and seemed to have problems orientating on paper.  If I started a drawing off he could finish it.  Now he will attempt some drawing and painting.
I do not know if his difficulties are dyslexia or autism or both.  He knows his numbers up to 20.  If the number cards are mixed up on a table and I ask him to point to the number 15 he can do that.  However if I pick up the number 15 and ask him 'what number is this', he says 'I don't know'.  So I am thinking he has some kind of information visual to verbal retrieval problem.  It is exactly the same with phonics and words.  If I ask him to point to the word 'come' he can do that.  If I show him the word 'come' and ask him what it says, again he says 'I don't know'.  He can rote learn things visually/audibly immediately.  He also writes his numbers/letters the wrong way round.  If I hold them up to a mirror I can read them.  Sometimes he writes things upside down and back to front.  But his visual/spatial skills are brilliant so I cannot understand why he cannot 'fix' in his mind which way round numbers/letters are written.  This is causing alot of problems at school because he cannot demonstrate understanding and therefore they cannot move him onto the next step.
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