About Brilliant Minds: 30 Dyslexic Heroes Who Changed Our World
After Shannon Meyerkort’s daughter was diagnosed with dyslexia, she went looking for a book that would offer both information and inspiration. When she couldn’t find it, she decided that she would have to write it herself. Brilliant Minds came together one story at a time as Shannon researched and wrote a story to read to her daughter at night. It was only after her daughter told her that she needed to share these stories with others that Shannon submitted them to a publisher.
Brilliant Minds contains the stories of thirty people who grew up with dyslexia. Although they each struggled at school, they all found ways to use their dyslexia to their advantage and help make the world a better place. Brilliant Minds will not only encourage kids with dyslexia, but anyone who has ever felt they didn’t quite fit the school system. A must have for every school library!
About Shannon Meyerkort
Shannon Meyerkort is a Western Australia author who loves research and history (and researching about history). She was awarded a place on the Fremantle Press/Four Centres Emerging Writers Program in 2020 and was a 2022 KSP Writers’ Centre Fellow. Brilliant Minds was published in October 2022, and she is currently working on several other manuscripts, including accessible texts for her daughter and historical fiction, one of which was longlisted for the 2022 Hungerford Award.
1. Which person in the book did you relate to most? Why?
2. How many people in the book did you already know were living with dyslexia? Were there any that surprised you?
3. Each profile is introduced by a quote by the person Shannon Meyerkort is telling us about. Which quote did you like best? Why?
4. Which career choice in the book interests you the most? Which career or life path would you like to see included in addition to the ones in this book?
5. Discuss the strengths, talents, skills or ways of thinking of one or more people in Brilliant Minds. Which of these are because of the person’s dyslexia?
6. What is something you love doing, or would love to do in the future? What is something you can learn from the people in Brilliant Minds to help you take the first step towards doing something you love or developing a new skill?
7. Think about something you found difficult to do to start with but then became good at. What helped you improve? What did you learn through that experience?
8. What is the impact of including a message from Shannon Meyerkort’s daughter in the foreword? (Just before the contents page)
9. Which illustration/s are your favourites? What do you learn about each person by what the illustrator, Amy Blackwell, has included in the pictures?
10. For every person whose story we read in this book, Shannon Meyerkort has listed two more people in a similar field who also have dyslexia. Choose one person and find out more about them.
11. Who do you know that would be encouraged from having a copy of this book? Why? [Consider buying them a copy, or encourage them to ask their school or local library to order it!]
If you enjoyed Brilliant Minda: 30 Dyslexic Heroes Who Changed Our World, you might also like …
- True Spirit: The Aussie Girl Who Took on the World by Jessica Watson (Hachette, 2010)
- Indigo Blue by Jessica Watson (Hachette, 2018)
- Wild Things: How We Learn To Read and What Can Happen If We Don’t by Sally Rippin (Hardie Grant Publishing, 2022)
- Along Came a Different by Tom McLaughlin (Bloomsbury, 2019)
- All the Ways to Be Smart by Davina Bell, illustrated by Allison Colpoys (Scribe, 2018)