Nearly two years ago, my child received a dyslexia diagnosis. We already knew she had learning difficulties in the traditional academic sense, but the diagnosis clarified the specific areas where she was having trouble receiving instruction. It became evident that accessing printed materials would be challenging. She has shown significant improvement in her confidence and academic growth after receiving a Yoto. Yoto, which provides her with access to the academic world and enables her to keep up with learning material, contributes to her confidence. The Yoto gives her access to a variety of books that she can discuss and feel proud of having read. Yoto also offers an incredible variety of non-fiction books, which my child has grown to love and from which she learns the most bizarre facts. This gives her more academic confidence because it allows her to participate in academic conversations at school that, if she were only reading about them, she would not be able to access or keep up with. Yoto excels in raising readers and nourishing a love for reading for kids who are neurodivergent because it gives them access to a world of literature that is user friendly for kids, they can access it on their own, and are built for kids as well as financially affordable for parents, even single parents like myself.
The fact that my child has developed a love for the Ramona series as a result of the Yoto Ramona cards is an example of how Yoto assists my child in accessing the academic world. Because of how frequently my child has listened to it, she can now read a grade-level book at school. Due to her familiarity with the words, it has increased her fluency rate by two times, and the fact that she can now read a grade-level book with her peers gave her more confidence while reading in class during silent reading time. In our home, Yoto cards have also been utilized as a form of currency to promote reading. Receiving a Yoto card of her choice encourages my child to read more. To receive a Yoto card she has to fill up a row of stickers for reading for 20 minutes each day, which is enough incentive for her to read every day. Overall, Yoto has established itself as a beloved household item, and I am beyond happy that, thanks to Yoto, my child can access the world of literature and will grow up loving books.
Julia Smith, Specialist Teacher at Dyslexia Sparks
Yoto Players were a huge hit at our Assistive Tech Festival. It was brilliant to see so many dyslexic learners really engaged in the product and excited to see the books on offer and have a listen. I think the physical nature of the cards is more appealing to them than just seeing a list of books on digital audiobook platforms.
Interestingly, but maybe not surprisingly, the greatest interest came from parents of children with Autism and ADHD, alongside Dyslexia, as they were most concerned about finding blue light free alternatives for their children to listen to in the evenings. A large proportion of parents were also keen to invest in them as a way of helping their children to reengage with age-appropriate books having been turned off reading books due to limitations in their reading abilities.
Most parents commented on how, although they read to their children, they could see the value in their children having an audio platform where they could listen to stories independently during times that they need to wind down. Parents and children also loved the idea of using the Make Your Own cards to aid memory by uploading voice notes and reminders. They also liked how quick and easy it is to link podcasts to Make Your Own cards.
Here at Dyslexia Sparks we really understand how audiobooks can help to keep dyslexic learners interested in reading, and helps to develop their vocabulary, even when they find the physical process of accessing books hard. We think the Yoto is a great advancement in technology which makes audiobooks even more accessible!