Children with dyslexia can have trouble with many aspects of literacy, including learning the alphabet, recognizing letters, following a sequence of directions and mastering the rules of spelling. Having a son with dyslexia, we tried many things to help him with his frustrations. We used a lot of compensatory techniques and one web-based program that is now an app.
Below are six apps that aim to help kids and adults with dyslexia.
Inspiration Maps (opens in new tab) Published by Inspiration Maps- FREE/$9.99- This was the web-based program now app that truly saved my son’s sanity. It is a graphing app that allows you use sequencing, color coding, and pictures to help memorize facts. The app has over 15 graphic organizers built in, reducing student frustration. If you flip over the graphic organizer you are given a clear outline of the information you gathered in your organizer. This is a great way to help students understand note-taking.
Sound Literacy (opens in new tab) Published by 3D Literacy, LLC- $24.99- This is a full-fledged teaching tool for students with dyslexia. The app is customizable and offers phonemic awareness, spelling by syllables and sound maps. Watching YouTube video http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=t1rX9JWvcWY&feature=plcp will help you understand the wide variety of ways to best use this app for each student.
Openweb-Dyslexia (opens in new tab) Publisher- Abbie Gonzalez FREE- A new open-source font created to increase readability for readers with dyslexia The typeface includes regular, bold, italic and bold-italic styles. Includes their DuckDuckGo search engine. The font helps students recognize letters, with heavy weighted bottoms to add a kind of "gravity" to each letter. This feature helps to keep the user from mentally rotating them in ways that can make them look like other letters. Consistently weighted bottoms can also help reinforce the line of text. The unique shapes of each letter can help prevent flipping and swapping.
Dyslexia Quest (opens in new tab) Publisher Nessy $1.99- For three different age groups: 7-10, 11-16, and 17+. Users enter their names and play each of the six games for their age group. Upon completion, they are given suggestions to make better use of learning strengths. Results can be emailed to teachers and parents. The games are based on working memory, auditory memory, visual memory, sequencing skills, processing speed and phonological awareness.
Dyslexia Exercises and Practices (opens in new tab) Publisher KIDZPLAYMOB, LLC $3.99 – This app is a “medical” app with some games built in to help children and middle school students practice. The games range from the alphabet, reading and listening, syllables, words and sentences. The app also has parent information such as myths and facts, diagnosis and treatment.
Dyscalculator (opens in new tab) Publisher: Bind & Bjerre FREE- This functions like a regular calculator, but in addition to giving the answer with numerals, it gives the spelled-out number, spoken number and graphical (numbers presented as bars).
Vicki Windman is a special education teacher at Clarkstown High School South.