Jelly Bean Twist Switch


Switches offer an alternative way of controlling a computer. The Jelly Bean Twist offers a 65mm activation surface with tactile and auditory feedback and interchangeable red, yellow, green and blue switch tops. The Jelly Bean Twist offers the original Jelly Bean’s 6.35 cm (2.5-inch) activation surface with tactile and auditory feedback, but with a twist. Your style can change, so should your switch. Now, you can change the colour of your switch top based on visibility, mood, style, or even social setting. It’s all up to your own style, tastes, or specific vision.

The Jelly Bean Twist switches come with switch tops included.



Who uses switches?

People who find it difficult to access the keyboard and the mouse can use a single switch or a combination of switches instead. Switches can help people with a variety of different physical disabilities, from mild conditions like RSI to complete paralysis. They are also suitable for people with severe learning difficulties as they are a simple, understandable method of accessing a computer.

All AbleNet switches are designed to provide tactile and audible feedback to the user, activate no matter where they are pressed, they are also equipped with a 2m cord using 3.5mm monoplug which is all supplied with a life time warranty.  The diameter for each switch is 6.35cm and the pressure needed to activate the switch is 56.7g making it easy for a child or adult to use.

Follow this link to find out more about the Jelly Bean Twist Switch.


Monster 2 Keyboard

Monster 2 Keyboard

What Is Monster 2 Keyboard?

The Monster 2 Keyboard is ideal for young children and is the perfect entry into computing. Made in 2011 at a Weight of 1.0000g this device features large, oversized keys grouped in different colours, which helps alleviate the eye strain associated with using a computer keyboard. There is also a high-visibility model, with large black legends against a bright yellow background, and a high-contrast model with large black legends on a high-contrast white background.

Monster 2 Keyboard

Who can Monster 2 Keyboard help?

The Monster 2 Keyboard from Accuratus is designed specifically for children who are just starting to use computers and keyboards and it aims to help assist learning, with having an easy to remember colour-coordination system. With large key caps the Accuratus Monster 2 is also ideal for users who suffer from MS (Multiple sclerosis) and Parkinson’s disease. The Keyboard is also spill resistant which makes is perfect for people that find they are prone to the occasional spill. Plug and Play technology means that you can simply start typing straight away without any difficult and time consuming installation process.


Different features of the product.

There are many different features of the Monster 2 Keyboard, for example the USB interface, Large 1 inch square keys at 24mm. The device has two port USB 2.0 in the rear, a detachable wrist pad for comfortable typing and is the same size as a normal conventional keyboard. Within the design itself the Monster 2 Keyboard has spill holes in the base of the keyboard so that any small spillages can escape without any damage to key keyboard itself. The dimensions of this product are 465 x 180 x 27mm (L x W x H) being a starter keyboard it is rather light (770g) and has a cable length of 1.5M.


Find out more by following this link to the Monster 2 Keyboard on

Dyslexia, Moving Letters, and a Local Chip Shop!

Image of a local chip shop demonstrating dyslexia and moving letters

Thank you to Martin who sent this photo in to of his local ‘chippy’ – he begged the question as to whether this is a dyslexics worst nightmare or a dream come true. Would a simple play on words like changing ‘Fish and Chips’ to ‘Chish and Fips’ help someone with dyslexia tackle the problems of moving letters?

Image of a local chip shop demonstrating dyslexia and moving letters

Symptoms of Dyslexia

It is estimated that 1 in 10 people of all ages, races, backgrounds and abilities are dyslexic. Dyslexia is a specific learning difficulty which tends to affect reading and writing, spelling, expressing ideas, organisation, time management and more. You can find out more about dyslexia in a previous blog post on as part of Dyslexia Awareness Week: What is Dyslexia and where can I find support?


Moving Letters

As part of the reading difficulties associated with dyslexia, many people may experience visual stress. This can include seeing letters which move or look like they are back to front, causing issues with letters such as ‘d’, ‘p’ or ‘q. In some cases, visual stress can cause significant problems with reading.

Earlier this year, Victor Widell developed an online simulation using code to demonstrate what a dyslexic reader may experience. Take a look by following this link to see what it may be like to read with dyslexia. It’s important to note that not every person with dyslexia will experience this difficulty and some people may not find that letters move at all when they read.


What Assistive Technology Can Help With Moving Letters?

Colour plays a major part when looking to reduce the effects of visual stress. Using coloured paper such as Irlen Pukka Pads or applying Irlen Coloured Overlays over printed text often help dyslexics with visual stress. The choice of text colour used on a white background can also affect visual stress. On, we have advanced accessibility options which allow you to change both the text and background colour on our website to one that helps you with reading. (To access this, please follow the ‘Accessibility’ link at the top of the page)


Do you think the name of this chip shop would help you read the shop sign? Or would it make it more difficult. It’s all down to your individual preferences so there is no right or wrong answer – please comment below to let us know what you think.

Reading overlays for dyslexia and Irlen® Syndrome


Reading overlays for dyslexia and Irlen Syndrome are a cost-effective tool to help with reading difficulties. In this blog post, we look at what dyslexia and Irlen® Syndrome is and how assistive technology such as Irlen Institute Overlays or reading software can help.


What is dyslexia?

Dyslexia is a specific learning difficulty that affects approximately 1 in 10 people of all ages and abilities. Dyslexic children and adults will often experience difficulties in their reading and writing. You can find out more about dyslexia by following this link to our previous blog post: What is dyslexia and where can I find support?


What is Irlen® Syndrome?

Irlen logoIrlen® Syndrome is a perceptual dysfunction which affects both children and adults of all ages and abilities. 12% of the general population are affected by Irlen® Syndrome, and up to 47% of these also have disabilities such as dyslexia, autism, dyspraxia and much more. Symptoms can include:

  • Light sensitivity – may experience discomfort in fluorescent light, sunlight and lights at night.
  • Difficulty judging distance – problems with special awareness and may find it difficult to cope with stairs, sport and driving.
  • Eye strain and headaches – may experience headaches and fatigue.
  • Contrast and colour sensitivity – problems with black print on a white background, bright colours and using a computer or tablet.
  • Inefficient reading – inability to develop reading skills due to skipping words and lines, slow reading rate and problems with tracking.
  • Distortions of print – problems with printed text moving, fading or blur.

More symptoms can be found by following this link to the Irlen East website. It is important to remember that Irlen® Syndrome is not caused by a problem with the eyes, but by the way the brain interprets the visual information sent from the eyes.


What assistive technology can help with reading for people with dyslexia or Irlen® Syndrome?

There is a variety of assistive technology software and hardware available which can support reading difficulties experienced by dyslexic people or those with Irlen® Syndrome. Many websites, including, also have built in accessibility features on their website. This means that you can easily adjust font size and background colours to view the website in a way that suits you. (To change the accessibility settings on, please follow the ‘Accessibility’ button in the main navigation bar).

ClaroView and ScreenRuler Suite software allows you to add a digital coloured overlay to your screen. This means that you can quickly adjust the coloured tint on all of your applications on your computer, which can help those who experience contrast and colour sensitivity. ClaroView also has the ability to add in a ruler across the screen which can have the contrast changed and the background coloured or greyed out. This helps if the individual struggles to track lines when reading.

Image of Irlen OverlaysChanging the paper colour or using reading overlays for dyslexia and those with Irlen® Syndrome can be a great help. The colour that works for you is on an individual basis – at we stock a wide range of colours and brands, including Irlen® Institute Overlays and Pukka Pads. To find out which colour you need you can be screened at an Irlen Centre which will determine the severity of your situation. To find your nearest centre, please take a look at the Irlen® Centre website. Alternatively, you can purchase a pack of 10 Irlen® Institute Overlays for our sale price of just £19.99 (RRP: £29.99). This is a low-cost option and lets you try out all 10 colours from the Irlen® Institute.


Do you have dyslexia or Irlen® Syndrome? Comment below to let us know if changing colours has helped you!

Audio Notetaker: Top 5 benefits of using the note taking software


Sonocent Audio Notetaker is a popular software to support note taking for students in lectures and group meetings. It can also be helpful for employees to use whilst at work during meetings or brainstorming sessions. It is available on PC and Mac,with an accompanying iOS and Android app, Sonocent Recorder.

Put simply, Audio Notetaker breaks the note taking process into steps so that individuals with dyslexia can take accurate and comprehensive notes. Recorded or imported audio is uploaded to the software and displayed as coloured chunks for each phrase. Slides, images and text notes can also be added alongside the relevant parts of the recording to create handy resources.

There are many different types of note taking software for students and employees; however Audio Notetaker is always a popular choice because it works so well and has so many great features packed in. Here are my top 5 benefits of using Audio Notetaker to help you take notes…

This is a screenshot taken from Sonocent Audio Notetaker version 4

5 key benefits of using Audio Notetaker

1. Use colour highlighting to add meaning to your notes Using the coloured highlighter tool, you can add additional meaning to your notes by highlighting audio chunks that are important, audio that you didn’t quite understand, or audio that is a change of topic. Using this colour, you can extract your audio into new projects to create clear and concise notes.

2. Integrated with Dragon Naturally Speaking Using Dragon Naturally Speaking Premium or Professional (version 11 or above) voice recognition software, you can dictate summaries of your notes, write additional notes, or transcribe your recording straight into Audio Notetaker.

3. Import images, slides and PDF documents To create truly comprehensive notes, Audio Notetaker allows you to import audio, text, images, slides and PDF documents to your project. This is extremely helpful for students who are using the software to help them take notes within a lecture. Simply record audio using a digital recorder, use index marks when the slide changes and import the PowerPoint presentation from your lecture. When you upload your audio recording and PowerPoint presentation to your project, your audio and slides will match up together.

4. Record and annotate with your smartphone app Using the accompanying free app, Sonocent Recorder, you can take high-quality recordings using your smartphone or tablet. Just like the software, you can highlight key points in your audio using colour highlighting tools. You can also add images from your camera or photo library alongside your audio. Once you’ve finished recording, simply transfer your file to Audio Notetaker via Wi-Fi.

5. Use audio from different devices and locations Using Audio Notetaker version 4, there has been a huge jump in audio quality and you are now able to import audio from a variety of sources. Alongside your smartphone app, you can import audio from a digital recorder, videos, Skype, a podcast and much more. With the audio clean-up tool, you can instantly remove unwanted noises such as hisses or keyboard taps.It’s quite hard to narrow down the benefits of using Audio Notetaker software to just 5 as there are so many great features. To find out more, please follow this link where you can read more and purchase Audio Notetaker >>

Latest Assistive Technology Products: May 2016


To help you stay up to date with the latest trends surrounding assistive technology, we have compiled the latest and most popular software, hardware and apps to support those with dyslexia and other disabilities. This will form part of a monthly update on the latest assistive technology on the blog. Please sign up to our newsletter to make sure you don’t miss June’s item >>

The latest assistive technology products from


The trends surrounding assistive technology in May have moved even closer towards apps for smartphones and tablet devices. New apps that have been released include support for those with dyslexia, dyscalculia,low vision and many more disabilities. Assistive Technology apps have become increasingly popular in the past year and are being used in environments such as schools and in the workplace. Whether they are being used on their own or to accompany a desktop version of software, assistive technology apps are a great tool to support those with disabilities.

This is an image of CapturaTalk Junior

iShould supports individuals with time-management difficulties, such as dyslexia. It offers anew way to organise and manage your activities, allowing you to plan, share and achieve your goals. The app works together with an online system where you can develop ideas and plan activities according to your personal preferences. The iShould app is available on iOS and Android devices.

CapturaTalk Junior is a literacy support app for iOS devices from iansyst and has been designed to assist younger users with dyslexia and other specific learning disabilities.The app includes the powerful Optical Character Recognition technology from ABBYY allowing users to take a photograph of printed text and convert this into digital text that can be edited in Word or other text editors. CapturaTalk Junior also contains accessibility features such as text-to-speech technology, coloured overlays and dyslexia friendly fonts.

You can find a wider selection of the latest assistive technology apps to download in our latest Assistive Technology Catalogue or on the Apps category on

Software and Hardware

This is an image of the C-Pen Reader Scanning Pen

The C-Pen Reader is a small, portable and lightweight scanning pen which supports those with reading difficulties such as dyslexia, or those learning English as a second language. The pen can be run across any printed text from books, newspapers, printed labels and more, and be read aloud from a naturally speaking English text-to-speech engine. This allows you to hear the correct pronunciations of words, as well as hear the word definition read aloud. The C-Pen Reader scanning pen is compatible with both PC and Mac, allowing users to transfer scanned text to a text editor.

Clicker 7 is a popular literacy support software which is designed to develop reading and writing skills in users of all ages and abilities. It features a wide range of writing tools including word prediction, realistic speech feedback and a built-in, child-friendly word processor. Clicker 7 is often used in schools as it contains a number of tools for teachers. One useful tool that is used is ‘Word Pool’ where teachers can add in unusual words or names to Clicker’s knowledge base to ensure it is recognised by the software.

The final new addition in the world of assistive technology are the Eye Lighter Reading Rulers which are now available as a 10 pack containing green, purple, orange, pink, blue and yellow reading rulers. The 6” transparent plastic highlighter helps you to maintain focus, concentration and comprehension whilst reading. The design of the Eye Lighter allows you to track 1, 2 or 3 lines at a time whilst also helping you to not lose your place or reread lines.

You can keep up to date with the latest assistive technology products right here on the blog. Alternatively, you can view more information from iansyst by following this link >>

Helping Your Student with Dyslexia Learn: 5 Strategies to Rely On

Teacher Teaching Lesson To Elementary School Pupils

The time spent in education is a significant part of a child’s development. As a teacher, aiding the growth of a dyslexic learner is a wonderful opportunity. Nonetheless,it can be a challenging task, and it’s important to remember that what makes a dyslexic learner struggle is neither a lack of intelligence nor willfulness.

Dyslexic students have a learning difference.Their brain can’t hold information as efficiently as non-dyslexics, often making their learning a slow, difficult, and at times impossible process.

However,with the guidance of a caring tutor – well-equipped with tried and tested strategies – dyslexic students are capable of learning and becoming high-achievers.

Here are 5 strategies you can apply in your classroom:

1) Multisensory Learning

Multisensory activities help dyslexic children absorb and process information in a retainable manner and involve using senses like touch and movement alongside sight and hearing.

They are not only beneficial for dyslexic learners but also the rest of the class. Engaging in something different and hands-on excites students and heightens engagement.

Examples of multi sensory activities for the classroom include:

  • Writing words and sentences with tactile materials,e.g. glitter glue, sand, pasta, LEGO, or beads.
  • Physical activities to practice spelling, e.g.hopscotch or jump-rope – the children spell out words when they jump to each square or over the rope. Students work in pairs and take turns to dictate words and spell them.
  • Scavenger hunts for letters and words – split students into teams and give them a word. Next, write letters onto notes and hide them around the classroom.The teams must find the letters to construct the assigned word and then glue them together on a poster by cutting out the letters

2) Assistive technology and tools

Pocket spell checkers

The dyslexic learner types in a word how they think it’s spelled, often phonetically, and the spell checker will return a correctly-spelled match. This helps the child strengthen their confidence in both writing and spelling and commit correct spellings to memory.

Line Readers

Aline reader magnifies and highlights the portion of text over which it is placed. This helps dyslexic readers move through a book or worksheet and keep their place easier, especially if they experience ‘swimming’ words: the surrounding sea of text will be less distracting.

Coloured keyboard

Keyboards with coloured overlays and larger letters make typing more accessible to dyslexic students. Some come with multimedia hotkeys that enable the user to play, pause, stop, or rewind audio, which is useful as dyslexic learners often use text-to-speech software when reading and writing.

When purchasing assistive technology for a dyslexic student, consider acquiring several for other students to share. This will lessen feelings of isolation or difference the dyslexic child may feel and prevents other students from feeling envious.

Image of students learning at school

3) Helpful Arrangements

Use a cloze procedure.

Give the dyslexic student a sheet containing key information that you’ll be covering throughout the lesson and blank out key words. The student can then take notes just like others without the stress of trying to copy everything before it’swiped off the board. This helps them focus and commit key information to memory.

Give them plenty of time to complete homework.

If a piece of homework takes a day to complete, distribute it on a Friday so that the dyslexic child has the whole weekend to work on it.

You could also let their parents know what the homework schedule is for the month,so they can start looking at certain topics with their child at home in advance.

Mark based on effort and ideas.

Dyslexic learners may be less skilled than their peers at spelling and grammar. However,if their thought process and creativity shine through the errors and it’s clear they’ve made an effort, this should be praised.

Highlight any major spelling errors using a green pen – nothing screams “WRONG” more than a teacher’s demotivating red pen!

4) Educational Games

The great thing about games designed for dyslexic students is that any learner can benefit from them, so you can easily incorporate them into lessons for the whole class. Nothing will excite your students more than playing games!

There are hundreds of educational apps and games for dyslexic learners available. High Speed Training and have a selection of apps which are available. Some excellent places that provide digital or physical games for the classroom include:

  • – Nessy offers a range of PC games that help learners understand the sounds that make up words – an area where dyslexics particularly struggle. Their colourful, cartoony style is appealing and engaging to kids.
  • – The workbooks available here are full of puzzles, 3D drawings, and reading activities, tailored to dyslexic learners’ strength: visual thinking.
  • Simplex Spelling – If you have iPads in your classroom,the apps in the Simplex Spelling series are an excellent choice. They help build up students’ understanding of phonics and how words are constructed. The series placed 3rd in the 2012 Best App Ever Awards – Best Elementary Student App.

5) Working together with parents

Meet with dyslexic students’ parents regularly to discuss how their child is doing and the strategies you’ve applied in the classroom. The child’s parents can also update you on what methods they’ve been using at home and what’s been successful.

Thisis important because, ultimately, no two dyslexic children are alike and thereis no ‘one-size-fits-all’ approach. By sharing knowledge about ongoing progress, both you and the parents can work together to find learning methods thats uccessfully aid the dyslexic student’s learning.

Image of the Author: Liz Burton, High Speed Training

Author Bio: Liz Burton works as Content Author at High Speed Training, a UK based online learning provider that offer business-related training courses. Liz has authored many courses, including the Dyslexia Awareness course designed to provide learners with the knowledge needed to offer their support to dyslexic children.

Rachel Ingham: How does ClaroRead benefit dyslexic learners?

This is an image of Rachel InghamBy Rachel Ingham, Dyslexia (SpLD Consultant)


The obvious benefits of using text to voice software, such as ClaroRead, need little explanation. It reads Word and PowerPoint documents, emails, the Internet and EBooks. This provides a wealth of educational and career benefits as well as providing a way to make reading a pleasure. However, like most technology, it can be underutilised. I would like to share some of the ways I have used ClaroRead to increase the learning potential for children and young people in the classroom. Its benefits in the workplace will follow in a future blog.

There were some compensations for being a teacher with dyslexia. One of them being I understood the difficulties of learning to read and the frustrations of being unable to read and comprehend in order to write and learn. Although I loved literature, the effort of reading lessened the pleasure and reduced the number of books I was able to read as reading was so laborious.

ClaroRead breaks down the barriers for the learner with dyslexic related reading difficulties by reading the unfamiliar words that cannot be easily decoded. It allows learners of all ages to independently access more complex informative text increasing the inclusive learning environment for individual or collaborative class based tasks. This independence allows the learner to choose areas of particular interest, motivating and enthusing them to research subjects further.

Problems with phonological processing for the learner with dyslexia are a well documented cause of reading difficulties. These difficulties can be ameliorated with good teaching increasing reading fluency and accuracy. Despite this, comprehension is often still negatively affected because of the level of cognitive processing required to decode, inhibiting the reader’s ability to gain a full understanding of the text. When text is read aloud the listener does not have to focus on the decoding, providing greater opportunity for comprehension and critical assessment of the information being studied.

Less understood are the problems relating to language and language development in the learner with dyslexia. ClaroRead provides the opportunity for the vital exposure to new words, often subject related, that are not commonly used in speech. Without the facility of accessing reading material with automaticity, the dyslexic learner’s vocabulary development is impaired which, in turn, affects their communication and writing skills.

A perpetual problem for some readers with dyslexia is the interference of other voices making it difficult to read with comprehension. With ClaroRead, the busy classroom is no longer an inhibitory factor as the learner can listen to the text through headphones. In addition, this provides an advantage of their hands being free to record the relevant data without losing their place in the text and thus enabling them to demonstrate their knowledge and understanding.

One of the greatest benefits of ClaroRead is as a proof reader. Learners, particularly those with dyslexia and or visual stress, miss many spelling errors and grammatical mistakes despite their dedicated efforts to seek them out. ClaroRead reads exactly what is written so the writer can hear what they have written ‘Brian breaks reduce stress in the learner’ instead of ‘Brain breaks reduce stress in the learner.’ It can also identify homophones which is crucial for the proof reader with dyslexia who is often unsure which homophone is the correct option. Picture or context descriptors help the homophone selection.

Not only is this a more effective method of proof reading, it is less arduous for the writer who has already put considerable effort into engaging with the difficult skill of committing their ideas to paper.

I often wonder if this history student would have recognised their mistake if they had used ClaroRead.

“It was important for the king to have the support of the no balls in court …”

Another advantage of ClaroRead for proof reading is that you can slow the voice of the reader supporting the slower verbal processing skills of the learner with dyslexia. Slowing the speed at which ClaroRead reads has an added advantage of providing time to record notes and to critically think about the reading material. Notes recorded for revision purposes can be revisited repeatedly without the constraints imposed by reading.

Everyone benefits from the use of ClaroRead in the classroom. Firstly, the learners are able to read more complex, informative text and gain more knowledge and understand with increased confidence. ClaroRead creates independence by reducing the anxiety and embarrassment caused by having to ask classmates and friends for help. Class discussion and collaborative learning settings are a lot more rewarding for all involved. Secondly, the teacher has a more inclusive classroom with engaged learners who can make independent progress.

We have discussed academic advantages and will close by acknowledging the positive aspect of being able to read for pleasure. To enhance this further the listener can choose the accent they would prefer, Heather from Scotland being a particular soothing choice. There are times when learners are required to learn to read and others when we should create the opportunity to enjoy literature without a needless struggle.

What’s new in Clicker 7?


Clicker is a popular literacy support software which helps users of all ages and abilities to develop their reading and writing skills. This week, released Clicker 7 for sale online and we wanted to let you know what’s new in the latest version!

Using the Clicker Board, students can organise their ideas to help them prepare for writing. This tool allows them to manipulate and link any combination of words, pictures and sounds to get started on their writing. Users can now record voice notes on the software, enabling them to vocally rehearse their sentence before they write. They can hear this read back to them with the new children voices. Sentences and words are read back in a friendly, age appropriate voice that younger students can identify with, encouraging them to actively review and self-correct their work. Clicker 7 also features enhanced word prediction and an even bigger library of over 3500 curriculum pictures.

Clicker 7 supports teachers by making it even easier to customise activities for different ability levels in the classroom. It also gives instant access to the software’s training materials – this helps teachers to get started quickly and become a confident user in no time. With Word Pool, teachers can add in unusual words or names to Clicker’s knowledge base to ensure it is pronounced properly, suggested by the predictor and accepted by the spellchecker.

Clicker 7 offers more access support than ever before to enable every student to access the curriculum and achieve success. In the latest version, the software offers eye gaze support and SuperKeys – the unique access method for learners who need bigger target areas.

Clicker 7 is available to purchase from by following this link >>

C-Pen Reader and Exam Reader launched on


This week, we launched the brand new C-Pen Reader and Exam Reader on! These scanning devices are small, portable and lightweight, and designed to support those with reading difficulties such as dyslexia, or those learning English as a second language.

The C-Pen Reader allows the user to simply run the pen across any printed text, whether that is from books, newspapers or printed labels. This text will then be read aloud from a naturally speaking British English text-to-speech engine, allowing pronunciations of words to be heard. This is useful for those who struggle reading large pieces of text as they can use the pen to read this aloud to them. The integrated electronic dictionary allows the user to scan a word and have the definition displayed and read aloud. The C-Pen Reader saves words that you have looked up previously, so the history is available for you. It also contains a highly accurate optical character recognition (OCR) engine which enables you to capture printed text and save this instantly. The text can be transferred to your PC or Mac and converted into editable text. Follow this link to find out more about the C-Pen Reader >>

The C-Pen Exam Reader has been approved by The Joint Council for Qualifications (JCQ) for use in exams. This allows students to independently take exams knowing that they can read and understand the questions and any additional text. Like the C-Pen Reader, the C-Pen Exam Reader allows students to run the pen across the printed exam question and instantly hear this read aloud in a naturally speaking British English text-to-speech engine. Follow this link to find out more about the C-Pen Exam Reader >>