There is a mountain of evidence that shows that children who read for pleasure both have greater levels of personal happiness throughout their lives, and achieve better academic results.
So, what is the best way to entice the estimated 10% of children who are dyslexic, and the reluctant reader, into enjoying books?
“Reading speed is a big factor in keeping your reader interested.”
If someone reads slowly, you can’t expect them to hold information over several sentences or clauses when so much of the reader’s energy is already focused on decoding the words themselves.
Barrington Stokes an Edinburgh-based publisher that specialises in books for children and young adults recognises this. They and their authors do so by:
Using shorter sentences, simpler constructions, and more direct language (This makes for some terrific stories)
Using a bespoke font that minimises the chance a reader will confuse letter shapes.
Placing illustrations and spacing carefully to break up dense text.
Printing the books on a yellowish-tinted paper that minimises visual stress
Using thicker paper to prevent words and pictures showing through from other pages.
But dyslexic and reluctant readers need not be restricted to certain fonts or page thicknesses. Magazines, comic books, audiobooks and shorter fiction are also worth trying.
“Don’t ask what’s wrong with the reader, ask what’s wrong with the book.”
You can see our range of dyslexia friendly books here: