Magic Johnson was a star player in the ‘Dream Team’ – the U.S. men’s basketball team in the 1992 Olympics in Barcelona, Spain.

Did you know he is also dyslexic?

From a young age, Magic (whose real first name is Earvin) struggled to read and write, performing poorly in school. He says that this early challenge spurred him on to work harder to be the best.

“The looks, the stares, the giggles . . . I wanted to show everybody that I could do better and also that I could read.”

Despite this reading difficulty, he loved communicating with people and aspired to become a professional television commentator. He played basketball at college but focused on his study of communications.

But the magic overtook those dreams and brought something bigger than he could ever imagine.

He was drafted into the NBA after only 2 years of university and went on to be one of the most impressive basketball players of all time.

Magic now spends him time running a charitable organisation called the Magic Johnson Foundation. His message for kids everywhere is this:

“You don’t have to be Magic to be special. You’re already special. You’re you!”

Sarah Forrest is an Easyread Coach for the Easyread System, an online phonics course that teaches children to read through short daily lessons. Easyread specializes in teaching dyslexic children how to read.