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Your years at school, college and university go a long way to determining the life you lead as an adult. A Specific Learning Difficulty (SpLD) such as dyslexia, dyspraxia, dyscalculia and ADHD can often disrupt the learning process through these important years. But it doesn’t have to be this way.
It is estimated that Dyslexia affects as many as one in ten people in the UK. If you are a parent and your child has dyslexia, the chances are they will not be the only dyslexic child in their class. If you are a teacher or a SENCo, you’ll probably engage with many children with dyslexia throughout the day.
Today, children interact with the world around them differently to previous generations. Children use computers, tablets and smartphones at school and at home. And the chances are, when they complete their education, they’ll choose a job where using computers and technology will form a large part of the work they do. It is therefore important that children with dyslexia and other SpLD's do not get left behind. Assistive Technology can provide the solution.
Text-to-speech (TTS) software reads aloud digital text on computers, tablets and mobile phones. This popular type of assistive technology software will allow for emails, word documents, web pages and PDF documents to be read aloud (or discreetly through headphones) in a realistic sounding human voice. This can benefit those with reading difficulties such as dyslexia and anyone who struggles to digest text which appears on screen. Popular versions of this software include TextHelp Read&Write and ClaroRead.
Speech recognition software, sometimes referred to as voice recognition software, works when the user speaks into a microphone and the words spoken are typed onto the screen. The benefits of this for someone with dyslexia is that the software automatically spells the words correctly. Speech recognition software is also useful for people who do not have the ability to type or those who suffer from RSI (Repetitive Strain Injury). The world's leading and best known speech recognition software is Dragon Naturally Speaking.
Mind mapping is a simple way of connecting your thoughts, visually planning projects and brainstorming your ideas. Mind mapping software can help people with dyslexia as it uses images, colours, shapes and symbols to plan ideas rather than a greater emphasis on words. The most effective mind mapping software for people with dyslexia includes Inspiration, MindView and MindManager.
Note taking is often a common difficulty for someone with dyslexia. There are a number of solutions available, each with their own specific way of improving the way an individual takes and absorbs the notes they make. An great example of note taking software is Sonocent Audio Notetaker and note taking hardware is lead by the popular Livescribe Smartpen range.
Reading pens, or scanning pens as they are sometimes known, are a great way to have text on any physical document read aloud or discreetly through headphones. This could be from a textbook, worksheets or any document which has been printed off. Specific reading pens, such as the C-Pen Reader, also come with a built in dictionary so individual words can be scanned and the dictionary definition read aloud.
The full range of Irlen coloured overlays that can help with dyslexia, ADHD, reading difficulties and visual comprehension. Backed by over 30 years of research, the Irlen Institute is the pioneer and global leader in the visual processing technology that has helped millions of adults and children around the world.
When deploying multiple software licences across your school, college or university, the most efficient and cost effective way is to purchase a site licence. We offer a range of site licences with options to cater for institutions of all sizes and requirements. Our site licences include TextHelp Read&Write, ClaroRead, Inspiration, Audio Notetaker, MathType and Ghotit. Get in touch to discuss which licence is the most cost effective for you.
"We purchased a number of Dragon NaturallySpeaking licences through Dyslexia Box, who advised on the best type of licence and installation..."
James, School, Birmingham
"We've dealt with Dyslexia Box for just over a year now and used them on numerous occassions for advice and assistive technology software."
Mrs. Sexton, Primary School, Bristol
"My department used Dyslexia Box to kit everyone out with the Livescribe Bundles. They're excellent and students use them all the time..."
Karen, University, London