Monday, October 22, 2012

Crossbow Reading Rulers {Review}


I was thinking that I had written a blog post about Luke’s vision issues.  Beginning in December of 2011 or maybe it was January 2012, he’s been seen by an orthopist for a eye convergence disorder.  Convergence is when you bring your eyes together to focus on something – like a book.    The catch for Luke is that his eye glass prescription forces his eyes to diverge (he has a “minus” prescription), but he has to converge for reading, so he is working double hard.  He’s been using a computer program to help with this all year – and he’s been doing great.  He’s basically on a maintenance program and the orthopist said he’ll be dealing with this issue all of his life.

Last spring I began reading about some helps for Luke with his reading.  Because of the convergence issue, he sometimes complains that words “jump” on the page.  Indeed, Luke does have trouble staying on one line of text.  I read some information that said that research showed that people with some types of vision/ reading problems respond well when colored gels highlight the words they are reading.  So, I cut up a transparent pinkish-red binder divider to see if that would help Luke. 

Mom, the edge isn’t even,” Luke would say about my homemade reading guide.  And it would bug him so much, he wouldn’t use it.

When I saw that Crossbow Education was offering their Eye Level Reading Rulers ($16.95 for a pack of 10) I knew I needed to give these a try!

I love these! 

The multi-colored pack I received had the following colors in it:  yellow, celery, grass, jade, aqua, sky, purple, magenta, pink, and orange.  They are all approximately 8 inches long and 3 inches wide. 

They are designed for people with visual stress and dyslexia as well as Irlen Syndrome.  You can read about these issues on the Reading Ruler web page under “Product Description.”

You can see that there is an opaque band in the middle (with the company’s logo on it).  We use that edge to line up with our text for reading.  Sometimes Luke (or Levi, my model in our pictures) will use the one-line-at-time edge, and sometimes they’ll use the paragraph-sized band of color.


Using one line at a time (above)



Using the paragraph-sized band of color (above)

On the fat, colored side, you’ll see a dark line.  When I’m tired at night (or in the afternoon) and reading, I will sometimes just use the dark line as my reading guide instead of the color.  Honestly, the reading rulers are so versatile that when we are reading, it doesn’t matter which edge the boys are using – as long as they are reading and tracking well!

I should also mention that one side of the plastic ruler has a matte finish, and the other has a glossy sheen.  I didn’t realize that that was on purpose – the website mentions that the glossy/ matte feature matters for those dealing with visual stress.

How We Use Them:  When we first got these in the mail, I just let the boys pick out the color they wanted to try first.  We held them up to the light as well as put them on a book so we could get a clear idea of the shades of color.  Levi went for his favorite color first (orange) and Luke decided on a greenish shade (I think it was grass he tried first).  Since we started the review, he’s misplaced one or two, so I just find the remainder and let him pick a different color.  He hasn’t tried all of them, but he seems to prefer the lighter shade ones over the purples and aqua colors.  Eventually, we find the misplaced ones and he uses them.  Have I noticed a difference?  He definitely does better with the thinner band of color, which reveals just one or two lines of text.  I’m hoping that by using this more consistently, we can get to the wider band of color eventually.

These double well as bookmarks, and then we don’t misplace them (a common problem here)!

To read what other blogging-homeschool-moms thought of Crossbow’s Reading Ruler, please click on the banner below:


Disclaimer: As a member of the TOS Crew, I received this product, at no cost to me, in exchange for my honest review. All opinions are mine.

1 comment:

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