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Dyslexia Software

Reading disorders, such as Dyslexia and Meares-lrlen (Scotopic Sensitivity) Syndrome, affect a significant number of people. Dyslexia is the most common cause of reading difficulty - it is estimated that one in 10 children is dyslexic.

Being affected by a reading disorder can be a daunting and frustrating experience for a child and, if not properly addressed, might lead to low self-esteem and underachievement in adult life. At the same time, children with dyslexia are often characterized by above average intelligence and can excel if given proper attention and assistance. History is full of examples of great people who have overcome dyslexia to achieve enormous success - George Washington and Albert Einstein being probably the most famous.

Research has consistently shown that people with reading disorders can benefit from specifically designed reading tuition and improve their reading skills and ability to process information at any age.

The earlier the problem is diagnosed and addressed, the better chances of success.

According to the International Dyslexia Association, 74% of the children who are poor readers in 3rd grade remain poor readers in the 9th grade. This means that they cannot read well as adults.

Fortunately, more research is being conducted into the field and some proven methods of instruction and techniques that are effective in dyslexia reading instruction have emerged.

See how RocketReader makes reading easier for dyslexics

RocketReader software uses special features and techniques to make reading easier for dyslexics and others affected by reading difficulties.

      You can control the appearance of your exercise window by picking from a selection of visual templates that automatically set the font colors, type face and spacing. The templates have been especially designed for users with various reading difficulties, such as dyslexia, ADD/ADHD and visually impaired readers (as per RNIB's recommendations).
      Dyslexia - Color GrP GB - Blue British Dyslexia Assoc. - Yellow

      Using contrasting text/background color combinations to improve text readability has been supported by a number of studies (Arditi, A. 2003, Irons, P.2003).

      In addition to choosing from a variety of templates, RocketReader allows you to pick from a palette of contrasting colors or even set your own custom colors. It is now a well known and researched fact that people with reading difficulty often find that using colored eyeglasses and tinted contact lenses assists their reading (Meares, O. 1980, Irlen, H. 1983, Wilkins AJ, 1993). The use of colored overlays (sheets of translucent or transparent colored plastic placed over a page) has also proven beneficial (Wilkins, A.J.,1994, Tyrrell, R. et al., 1995, Wilkins et al., 2001)


      You can change fonts in all RocketReader exercises and even in the popup dialogs! You can also select the line spacing e.g. 1.5 or 2 spacing.

      According to Irons, P. (2003) text should be at least 12 point and preferably with increased character spacing as these additional elements have been shown to reduce some of the visual disturbances.

      Flash, Grouping and Speed Training exercises all use the principle of displaying a limited number of words at a time. In combination with the ability to control speeds, this gives you the total control over the pace of your exercise. This allows you to exercise "as fast as you can but as slow as you need to", which is consistent with the principles of the Orton-Gillingham approach.

      Some recent research (Florer F.L., Hunter-Khan J.M., 2000) suggests that changes in reading rate that result from letter spacing are attributable to the detection of word boundaries and not the visibility of letters. RocketReader Flash and Grouping exercises train the reader's eye to better distinguish word boundaries, thus improving the fluency of reading.

      You have full control over the speed at which the text is displayed.

      Allows you to determine the Grade Level of the texts you read, thus ensuring you practice on texts of adequate complexity.
      Readability Analysis.

      Poor comprehension is a known problem associated with reading disorders. RocketReader exercises are followed by comprehension tests designed to measure how much a reader understood and remembered about the text that was read. This helps to ensure that increase in reading speed is accompanied by adequate comprehension rates.

      These include:
      • rich selection of practice readings targeted at various age groups (age seven to adult level)
      • ability to use your own documents or web resources in the training exercises
      • lesson statistics for teachers and parents
      • customizable "look and feel".

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    System Requirements: Windows NT, 2000, XP or Vista

    Instructions - how to choose a dyslexia template within RocketReader

    1. Open RocketReader by double clicking on the RocketReader icon on your desktop
    2. Login with your username and password
    3. Click on the Custom Lesson button in the Lesson window
    4. Click on the Settings button in the Skills window. (The Settings button is next to the Exit button).
    5. Click on the Text tab
    6. Click on the arrow next to the Learning Difficulties field
    7. Choose your dyslexia color/settings from the drop down list
    8. Click on the OK button

    Your dyslexia color/settings preference will now be applied to all RocketReader exercises.


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References

    Arditi, A. (2002 - copyright date) "Effective Color Contrast, Designing for People with Partial Sight", (Lighthouse International) Available: http://www.lighthouse.org/print_leg.htm (Accessed: 2003, July)

    Arditi, A. (2003 - copyright date) "Making Text Legible, Designing for People with Partial Sight", (Lighthouse International) Available: http://www.lighthouse.org/print_leg.htm (Accessed: 2003, July)

    Florer F.L., Hunter-Khan J.M. (2000) The changes in reading rate that result from letter spacing are attributable to the detection of word boundaries, and not the visibility of letters.

    Irlen H. Successful treatment of learning difficulties. in 91st Annual Convention of the American Psychological Association. August 1983. Anaheim, CA.

    Irons, P. (2003) "Tintavision Research Papers", (Tintavision Ltd.) Available: http://www.tintavision.com/sci_papers.htm (Accessed: 2003, June)

    Irons, P. (2003) "Colour backgrounds and filters", (Tintavision Ltd.) Email discussion, June 2003 from tintavision@clara.co.uk.

    Meares O. Figure/ground, brightness contrast, and reading disabilities. Visible Language, 1980;14: 13-29.

    Tyrrell, R., HoUand, K., Dennis, D. and Wilkins, A.J. (1995). Coloured overlays, visual discomfort, visual search and classroom reading. Journal of Research in Reading, 18(1), 10-23.

    What is the Orton-Gillingham approach? Available:http://www.ortonacademy.org/approach.html (Accessed: 2004, July)

    Wilkins AJ. Overlays for classroom and optometric use. Ophthal Physiol Opt 1993;14: 97-99.

    Wilkins, A.J. (1994) Overlays for classroom and optometric use. Ophthalmic and Physiological Optics, 14, 97-99.

    Wilkins, A.J., Lewis, E., Smith, F., & Rowland, F. (2001). Coloured overlays and their benefits for reading. Journal of Research in Reading, 24(1), 41-64.

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