The Best Aids
For someone working with a child who has dyslexia, news of dyslexia reading aids can lead to some excitement and curiosity. Unfortunately, some of these aids are only as effective as the placebo effect allows them to be. While some aids are quite helpful, there are no miracle aids or miracle cures. There are several items available that can assist those with dyslexia, but the most valuable reading aid available is patience.
As with any learning disorder, simply having someone stand by that has a large amount of patience with the individual and their learning disorder is the biggest help of all. The anxiety is relieved and the student is better able to perform when they are concentrating on the task at hand rather than concentrating on trying to hurry up and please a teacher, aid or parent. Review the reading aids listed here to see which one would be most comfortable and valuable when combined with patience. It is even possible to combine one or more method. Remember that half the battle is in remembering that the brain can be retrained, it just can't be done overnight.
Some students with dyslexia have problems with the glare that comes off of a paper or the letters printed on the paper. This can sometimes be solved by lighting changes. The changes in lighting may be done by testing different area where the light hits the paper and finding which are is most comfortable for the student.
It is also found that different colors produce different types of glare. There are several ways to change the colors of the written words.
- Colored lenses. Students who wear colored lenses may not be bothered by the glare of the light off the paper and may have an easier time reading when the glare is reduced by using colored lenses.
- Colored paper. If the students are reading handouts, it may simply be a matter of printing the handout on a different color paper than white, since white tends to produce the most glare.
- Colored film. A transparent film can be laid over the top of the paper that the student is trying to read. Try to find a film with a matte finish to avoid adding to the glare on accident. This may actually be the simplest technique since the film can be used over and over again and the student will not be embarrassed by wearing colored lenses. It lends them a sort of discretion that the other options do not.
Of course, there are many voice aids, but they may not be as feasible to use on an everyday basis since they require technology to be present as they are used. The voice aids should be used more as exercise tools to help the student follow along reading as the voice tool reads the written word aloud.