For students with dyslexia, learning guilt and shame can be overwhelming. Fortunately, as stigma decreases, and we collectively reach a deeper understanding of how dyslexic brains process language, it is becoming much easier to navigate the unique challenges that this particular learning difference brings—inside the classroom and out.
In special education schools, students are given material resources in the classroom that empower them to improve their literacy skills and reading comprehension, no matter what their chronological grade level may be.
The Introduction of Voice-to-Print Tools
One such resource that is showing great promise is text-to-speech reader software, which was specifically designed for readers with literacy impairments and reading comprehension disorders. While the vast majority of these nevertheless excellent programs solely provide text-to-speech options, there are a few (such as Read & Write) that provide a voice-to-print extension as well.
These highly sophisticated programs include additional resources that can be helpful, including “screen masks” that improve focus and eliminate distractions, and word predictors that go beyond simple spell checking to ensure students’ essays are written with grammatical and syntactical precision.
How Audiobooks are Helping Students with Dyslexia
The stigma surrounding audiobooks is quickly being diminished. Even neurotypical readers are enjoying the freedom to finish a book while completing other daily tasks like driving or cleaning, but for students with dyslexia, audiobooks provide the opportunity to read without difficulty—and more importantly, comprehend what is being read.
Integrating audiobooks, within reason, into a special education classroom can enable a student with a reading comprehension disorder to improve their literacy and eliminate unnecessary guilt and frustration. The joy of reading should be accessible to everyone.
Lake Michigan Academy and other special education schools work hard to provide one-on-one assistance with students who have a dyslexia diagnosis. Our educators are more highly specialized than those in the traditional education system to understand what students with dyslexia require to succeed.