Saturday, May 4, 2013

Cool Tools for Dyslexia & ADHD

We at Brennan Innovators continue to receive many requests for information about tools to help struggling readers of all ages with dyslexia, ADHD, autism and other focusing challenges that impact reading success. Periodically, we publish articles about such tools as this is the main focus of our business and its philosophy (please pardon the pun!)

Since our last article on this topic in late 2012, there have been even more resources made available to help both children and adults with ADHD and dyslexia challenges. Currently, we can see the great rush in the marketplace of assistive apps developed for those with these struggles. In addition, there are a few more low-tech tools that can help increase focus, promote more organization, improve reading concentration as well as comprehension and much more.

Today’s article will provide our readers with an updated list of both low-tech and high-tech tools for ADHD, dyslexia, and other reading and learning challenges. We hope this list of resources will give you some new options to improve the quality of life for you, your child or another adult you know who might benefit.

Cool Tools for ADHD & Dyslexia

Dragon Dictation: This is an easy-to-use voice recognition application powered by Dragon® NaturallySpeaking® that allows an individual to easily speak and then instantly see text or email messages. It can be up to five (5) times faster than typing on the keyboard. This voice-activated software transcribes words into Microsoft Word documents.

Exercise Balls: Some individuals with focusing challenges like to sit on an exercise ball while working at a desk. It can enable one to move around while still staying seated, which helps with focusing. Sensory and kinesthetic learners can be “soothed” into focusing with this tool that is more like a piece of soft furniture.

Reading Focus Cards: At this writing, thousands of the Reading Focus Cards (Patent 7,565,759) are in use by children and adults both in the U.S. and across the globe. These tools help to improve focus by isolating 1 or 2 lines of text AND blocking out more surrounding text than any other reading device available. They can be used in various sizes of books with any text line lengths. In addition, now the Reading Focus Cards can even be used with e-readers (shorter Reading Focus Card for Kindle, Nook, Kobo, etc.) and with e-tablets (longer RFC for iPad or Android tablets, etc.)

Google Calendar: A FREE electronic calendar that allows a user to reduce prioritizing dilemmas, time management issues and motivation hiccups. Follow the plan entered into this e-calendar just like many working professionals and executives with ADHD.

Alarm Apps: Many individuals with ADHD very often tend to hyperfocus on certain tasks. Because of this, they can have a rough time sticking to and maintaining a schedule. Sometimes, an “alarm” app can be used to break up or interrupt the flow of activity. There are many different types of alarm apps from which to choose. One app often recommended is AlarmDroid, which has many additional features for Android devices. (It is recommended that one also install "Rings extended" with this app.) For iOS platform devices, you might try HomeRoutines.

Resources for These ADHD & Dyslexia Cool Tools

Dragon Dictation

Exercise Balls---Prices vary and are available from Pacific Pediatric Supply
Plain ball:
Tactile ball:

Google Calendar---FREE

AlarmDroid App---FREE

HomeRoutines App---$4.99

Evernote App---FREE (Premium Version: $4.99)

Other Related Resources

Apps for Dyslexia and Learning Disabilities (FREE & various prices)-Article and updated app list from the University of Michigan

Tools That Make It Easier to Manage ADHD-Article by Margarita Tartakovsky, M.S.

BEST Tools for Dyslexia-Related blog article from Help for Struggling Readers

Press Release - Patented ADHD Reading Tools Can Help ALL Kinds of Readers

For information on customizable reading tools: Tools for struggling readers of all ages! Info & support for struggling readers

Image courtesy of: Brennan Innovators, LLC

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