Robin van Rijthoven

108 Chapter 5 younger) (Elbro & Jensen, 2005). Tijms (2004) concluded that inaccurate phonological representations could interfere with the semantic processing and thus with the acquisition of verbal material. However, once a deeper semantic level is activated, no further problems appear to be encountered and consolidation of verbal information can take place as usual. As differences were found in verbal learning and in a single case also in consolidation, these differences could be a possible cause for reading and spelling problems. However, only a few studies related verbal learning and consolidation to reading and spelling. First, some studies found that visual-verbal paired-associated learning was related to reading outcomes among typically developing children varying in age between 6 and 12-years old (Hulme et al., 2007; Litt et al., 2013; Warmington & Hulme, 2012; Windfuhr & Snowling, 2001). Second, Kibby (2009) found non-significant small partial correlations between verbal list learning and reading for 9 to 13-year-old children with dyslexia. The relations were also non-significant for typically developing children. Third, Tijms (2004) found that, among 11-year-olds with dyslexia, verbal list learning as part of a factor ‘phonological memory’ together with digit span and interference was weakly but significantly related to reading and spelling. According to Tijms (2004), these tasks were taken together as they share the encoding of the phonological characteristics of information. More serious phonological memory deficits were found to be accompanied by weaker reading and spelling levels. It was concluded that children with dyslexia have problems in the acquisition of verbal material, but when verbal material is acquired consolidation of verbal information takes place as usual. All studies just described operationalized verbal learning as the end result of learning (the total number of words remembered in the last trial) instead of looking at the learning potential by means of the learning curve of each child as has been done by Kramer and colleagues (2000) and Van Strien (1999). By comparing all four mentioned studies, it can be concluded that differences were observed with respect to operationalization of verbal learning and age of participants. So far, no study linked the learning curve as described by Van Strien (1999) and Kibby (2009) to reading and spelling outcomes. Prior studies showed that childrenwithdyslexiabenefitmost fromphonics interventions for reading compared to reading fluency trainings, phonemic awareness instructions, reading comprehension trainings, auditory trainings, medical treatments and coloured overlays or lenses (Galuschka et al., 2014). For spelling, it was found that phonics, morphological and orthographic interventions are all effective in treating spelling of children with dyslexia (Galuschka et al., 2020). Furthermore, prior studies showed that brain activation in the posterior region is more alike typically developing peers after such an intervention (Shaywitz et al., 2003; Simos et al., 2002). However, large individual differences in response to intervention were reported (Galuschka et al., 2014; 2020). Following our line of reasoning, the ability to learn and maintain verbal information could be related to variation in responsiveness. Better verbal learning and consolidation