Wednesday, January 09, 2019

Books About Hyperlexia & Hypernumeracy

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Books about the hyperlexia diagnosis that will show you hyperlexia teaching strategies and answer the question what is hyperlexia?

Finding information on hyperlexia, and even more so for hypernumeracy, is tough. There's just not much available for parents like me. 

As a result, it's not surprising that there is so little published when it comes to books about hyperlexia. 

So here is my rather small collection of books about hyperlexia and hypernumeracy.

Books about hyperlexia

Books About Hyperlexia & Hypernumeracy

Prepare to be underwhelmed, folks, because there isn't much in terms of books published on the topic of hyperlexia. 

And on top of it all, some of these bookies are hard to find copies of. You might need to check your local library for a couple of these titles.

By Susan M. Miller

This book has been highly recommended to me numerous times and it is hard to find a copy. I do have a copy of it now (finally, years after my son's diagnosis!) and have skim read a large portion of it. It has lots of great tips and information. It's probably the best book to start with, if you can get your hands on a copy.

By Emily Iland

I really wish the title of this book was different and said hyperlexia vs autism because I honestly thought this book would have a passage or two about hyperlexia and that is it. I 100% underestimated the content of this book. 

This book is entirely about hyperlexic readers and goes into depth about what the comprehension issues are and how to help improve those issues. And it's research-backed, which I love. As an added bonus, the author herself has personal experience with hyperlexia as her son is hyperlexic.

My mind was blown reading this book. It is insanely helpful and thought-provoking. I had a lot of aha moments reading it and highlighted sooooo many passages. I highly recommend picking up this book as a parent and sharing it with your child's teachers and support staff at school.

By Dyan Robson

Written by yours truly, this eBook is a practical guide to everyday challenges and issues common in children with hyperlexia. Loaded with easy strategies that you can implement today, Beyond the Letters tackles 30 different challenges and issues, including social skills, WH- questions, pronoun reversals, and more.

By Nanci Bell

Full disclosure: I was gifted a copy of the V&V kit for review (you can see the full review here). The most recently updated version of the manual talks about hyperlexia a lot and will give you a really great understanding of what hyperlexia is and the comprehension issues that are common in hyperlexic kids. Plus, you'll learn about how to teach comprehension to these kits. 

By Phyllis Kupperman

One of main experts and key advocates for hyperlexia is Phyllis Kupperman. Lots of parents have worked with her personally and she has done lots of research and writing about hyperlexia. This reading comprehension kit would be a great practical solution! Lots of parents recommend it. I personally haven't checked it out yet due mainly to the price.

By Joseph Porter

A practical curriculum for working on reading comprehension, this book has fabulous reviews. Again, I have not personally checked it out, but one of the reviews on Amazon loved it for her hyperlexic son.

By Tom Fields-Meyer

While the word hyperlexia isn't specifically mentioned in this book, chapter six talks all about self-taught reading. I found myself relating to so many things in this chapter because it was similar to my experience with J (just at the toddler age instead of age five like the book). The author definitely is discussing hyperlexia, without realizing it. A good book overall, but chapter six really struck a chord with me, obviously.

By Daniel Tammet

This book is quite different from all the others on this list. Instead of offering practical suggestions and information about hyperlexia, this book explores the world of numbers as Daniel Tammet sees it. He has hypernumeracy and this is the only information that I have come across that really touches on the topic. An interesting read nonetheless!

By Daniel Tammet

Daniel is autistic, has synesthesia, and numbers are his jam. His memoir was extremely interesting to read about. He learns languages fluently, in as little time as a week. He even memorized more than 22,000 digits of pi. While hyperlexia isn't mentioned specifically, you will still find his experiences with languages and numbers fascinating, especially if those are things your child is also interested and gifted with.

By Priscilla Gilman

I decided to read this book around the time my grandpa died and that was a terrible decision as I was already an emotional mess. So I found myself in tears quite a bit reading this memoir as I could relate to so many of the things written in it. 

The book is an interesting read and it was helpful for me back then. And I still think the book is worth reading. 

However, as I have reread passages years later, I read them with a much better understanding of hyperlexia and autism in general and some of the passages just don't sit right with me. I think there's a reason why I never truly finished reading the entire book...

By Audra Jensen

The first book that I ever read about hyperlexia was this one. I downloaded it on my kindle the night of J's diagnosis and quickly read through most of it. Then I stopped reading midway through and I couldn't remember why I stopped. That was November 2014.

In November 2019, I reread the whole book, from cover to cover, and was absolutely disgusted by this book. I can see why I gave up finishing it...

While there is some good information about hyperlexia here and there in the book, there is a lot I don't like hate about this book:

  • It is very much pro-ABA and gives relentless praise for compliance
  • It has a weird section about how to teach your child to read, which is extremely odd considering hyperlexic children are self-taught readers
  • Overarching themes of autism warrior mom
  • Lots of quotes about trying to make your child indistinguishable from peers, which is NOT a goal I would ever be interested in
If you can find a used copy and read through all the negative/gross crap within it, then you will still manage to find some helpful information about hyperlexia. But it is definitely not my top choice on this list.

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What is hyperlexia? Find out with these books about hyperlexia and hypernumeracy