This month, we are raising awareness about dyslexia and the myths surrounding people with this language-based learning disability that affects word recognition, spelling, and reading.
Brain research says that with the right resources and accommodations, like accessible books and reading technologies, people with dyslexia can break through reading barriers, live incredible lives and reach immeasurable goals. So today, we want to shine a spotlight on some of our own Bookshare members and their reflections of living and learning with dyslexia. These members, and many like them, are strong advocates of people with dyslexia and learning disabilities. We hope their inspiring stories will encourage you to help change the future for tens of thousands of children and adults.
Teacher Raises Children’s Hopes and Dreams
Every day, Cathy Wilson, a Texas dyslexia specialist, raises the bar to help children with print disabilities succeed as readers. Ms. Wilson encourages educators and parents to introduce children to accessible books and technology early to help them be more independent. “Technology is a great equalizer,” she says. “Children with dyslexia are less constrained by labels from their reading disabilities.”
Young People Advocate for Quality Reading Resources and Technologies in Schools
Reagan Reeves, an eighth grader, who has read 200 digital accessible books, is proud of the awards he has received for the most Accelerated Reader points in his class. Reagan encourages people with dyslexia to “embrace educational resources that support their reading challenges.”
Lily Prest read her first chapter book in just five days! “What a difference,” says her mom, Jessica. “Daily reading is no longer such a struggle. Ebooks enabled Lily to read and reread the story. It reinforced her ability to understand what she reads. Now, she loves to read and we want to tell everyone about it.”
Two super bright teens, Brian Meersma and Ben Cooper, travel the U.S., even speaking to Congress, as proponents for resources and technologies on behalf of people with dyslexia.
What incredible zeal these Bookshare members have! We have little doubt that these young people are all destined to reach new heights. Let’s share their inspiring stories and use the resources below to spark new discussions about dyslexia on social media and in your community.
Resources to Share
The Bookshare collection includes practical strategies for teaching self-empowerment and helping children identify their strengths.
- Overcoming Dyslexia: A New and Complete Science-based Program for Reading Problems at Any Level by Sally Shaywitz
- The Gift of Dyslexia by Ronald D. Davis
- Thank You, Mr. Falker by Patricia Polacco
- The Dyslexia Empowerment Plan by Ben Foss
- Thinking Differently: An Inspiring Guide for Parents of Children with Learning Disabilities, by David Fink, co-founder of Eye to Eye, a national mentoring program for students with learning and attention issues.
- In a Benetech video titled “As They See It: Technology for Students with Learning Disabilities,” several students with learning disabilities share their excitement about ebooks, Bookshare, and assistive technologies that open doors to confidence, independence, and achievement.
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