Tuesday, October 23, 2012

Crossbow Education- Reading Rulers

Do you ever struggle with tracking a line of print across the page? Have you ever wanted to read in the car, but the sunlight coming in the windows, even on the other side of the car was just too bright on the page? Maybe you or your child has Dyslexia, or suffers from visual stress when reading. These are all common reasons why people try out the Reading Rulers from Crossbow Education. These nifty rulers come either with duo wondows or a plain ruler, in your choice of 10 colors. NOTE: the color that works best for you when reading may NOT be your favorite color, so be prepared to try out the different options.

We received a package of ten "eye level reading rulers" in the following colors: yellow, celery, grass, jade, aqua, sky, purple, magenta, pink, and orange. While neither of our daughters has dyslexia, I knew they had been suffering some visual stress issues and wanted to see if these would help. I was also curious to see if they would make any difference for me. I don't have any tracking issues, but do sometimes have problems with glare.

Open the package, get a page of black and white type, pick a color. Even I noticed the huge difference the color choices made in our ability to easily read the page. None of us particularly cared for the magenta, although Em mentioned it might be good for one of those secret spy messages you sometimes see on the back of the cereal box. Each of us tried each of the ten colors. Some were quickly set aside, others tried more than once until we settled on our favorites. Guess what? Between the three of us, we like 4 different colors. Em chose purple the first time through and has stuck with it. Arlene goes back and forth between the orange and sky ones, and I chose...grass.

Emily said she preferred the purple one because it's not too bright, but it keeps her focused on the paragraph. She has always had a tendency to want to skim ahead in her reading, grasping the overall 'forest' pretty quickly, but missing the 'trees.' She also like the size. At about 2 & 1/2" by 8" she can easily turn it into a bookmark between reads (and not misplace it!)

Arlene went back and forth between the orange and sky colored rulers. She was the one I was hoping it would help the most. I know she often gets lost when reading fine print. She said they helped her with reading small print books. She also pointed out to me that if you flip them over, they're matte finish on the back. That reduces glare. This is especially helpful if you're reading in the car, or out of the front porch and the page just seems "too bright."Yup, that helped me a lot! In fact, I'm using mine right now to keep track of my place in my notes while typing this review.

Crossbow also offers the rulers without the middle line, just colored boxes.

You could use these with any age reader, from Kindergarten on up. Our girls are 14 & 12. I am much older-LOL!
If you're someone who struggles with glare, especially from your computer screen, you should check out their other products. They offer a "virtual" reading ruler, for either Mac or Windows computers. We didn't review this, but I found it while checking out their other products on the website.

So, I hope by now you're thinking "Great, we should try those... but how much do they cost?" Not as much as you might expect. The ten color multi-pack is available for only $16.95 plus $2.95 shipping.

If you're a school room teacher, or would like to bless one, they have 2 different options for colors in thirty packs for $46.95 (plus $4.95 shipping), one has the 5 most popular colors, the other has 3 of each of the ten available colors.

If you're worried about them getting scratched, Crossbow offers cellophane cases $0.45 for 10. A small price to pay for a little protection when the reading rulers aren't being used.

Once you're used the reading rulers, you'll probably find a color that is a great help to you or your struggling child. Go back to Crossbow's website, because they also offer colored- page size overlays in each of the ten colors for only $3.95 each. (Also available in multi-pack discounts.)



 Crossbow has offices in the UK, and here in the US (North Carolina.) Their byline says "Reading Tools Anyone Can Grab." Many people may consider them a small company, perhaps not worth their time to investigate. Maybe you are skeptical. Don't be! The help their prodcuts offer...can be priceless!


 As members of the TOS Crew, we were sent a ten pack of mixed colored eye-level reading rulers in exchange for an honest review. We were not compelled to write a positive review. All opinions are ours.

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