Objective and Methods: In a prospective study 218 preschool children were enrolled (stratified in 2 training programs, one specialized for phonologic awareness in order to prevent dyslexia, the other consisting in training of general perception) during the last year of kindergarten. After finishing the first grade 131 children were compared in their reading and writing abilities. Results: In the whole group only a slight difference was found between both training modalities concerning their writing abilities. However, children with a history of hearing loss, actual hearing loss or pathologic middle ear findings profited most from the specialized training program compared to the control in their reading abilities. Conclusion: A specialized training program to improve phonologic awareness as a basis for reading and writing in every kindergarten and preschool child seems to be unnecessary. However, children with temporary hearing deficits benefit from such a program. For all other children general perception training may be sufficient.

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