Nov 20, 2017
How can cine-books help a reluctant reader? (cover)

October was Dyslexia Awareness Month. Talks, meetings, and comments poured in. Even US President Donald Trump issued a positive statement endorsing Dyslexia Awareness Month. But have we really made progress in fighting this condition? Furthermore, is there any present-day remedy to help those who are dyslexic?

Howard is thinking aloud…

Elizabethtown experience

Last Sunday, I visited my friends in Ohio. A typical family: the father is a history teacher, the mother is a screenwriter, and a 9-year-old boy—obviously hyperactive with some dyslexia symptoms. He used to run, play, and jump all the time I was chilling on the sofa.

I had taken a tablet with some cine-books uploaded. (For those of you who don’t know yet – cine-books are the books you can read, listen to, and watch like a movie). As I switched on the fairy tale “The Brave Little Tailor” for him, silence overtook the living room. Remember Orlando Bloom’s character in the movie “Elizabethtown” as he showed the explosion video to a bunch of kids and after which they became silent? (If you haven’t seen this movie, please, do. It is awesome!) The effect was the same here. This kid would watch the cine-book for at least half an hour with his mouth hanging open.

All this gave me the nudge I needed to see that the cine-book format might work perfectly for reluctant readers and readers with conditions such as dyslexia or ADHD.

How widespread is the learning challenge?  

It’s huge actually.

Nearly 4 million school-age kids and teens have learning disabilities in the USA, and at least 20% of them have a type of disorder that makes it difficult for them to focus.

Of course, schools have the tools for screening such conditions these are effectively; additionally, research-based practices and reading interventions have also been around for decades. However, as stated in a recent Napa Valley Register article, the problem is in the “failure to move from awareness to action,” as “so many students are still being deprived of the chance to realize their full potential.” To put it simply, the disorders mentioned above are not taken seriously.

So, what can we do about this? I would simply say   – stay emphatic. And when encountering kids with such conditions, use appropriate means to help them. Cine-books, as I mentioned earlier, can be of great help here.

Why would a reluctant reader enjoy cine-books?

The key features of the format are:

1. Highly illustrated content.

As known, to read illustrated books is the key piece of advice for dyslexic children. Words carry the story along, but graphics make it easier to follow the action and support understanding. This is where cine-books successfully step in. In cine-books, the text of a book is fully maintained, while the attractive visual side (with animation and special effects) is added, which might successfully support understanding.

2. Professional voiceover and soundtracks.

Reading starts with listening! Research has shown that those who listen to audiobooks improve their reading and also develop more positive attitudes toward books. Cine-books might help linking the text to sound, which is especially important for dyslexic readers and those with other learning disabilities.  

3. A text cut into into bite-size segments.

There’s a paragraph or a bit more on each page of a cine-book. Thus, a text doesn’t appear as a continuous mass, making it much easier to handle. That makes for great reading practice, especially for reluctant readers!

4. Lofty look and conceptual design.

Sometimes, just the difference in format is exciting enough to engage a reluctant reader into a narrative. Cine-books are available on tablets with Amazon, Android, and iOS operating systems. Enjoy!

The point is cine-books might be the irreplaceable remedy for people with learning disabilities. I envision this format having a bright future with cine-books being promoted by Departments of Education to use in preschools, schools, and other facilities. I suggest you go to and try them yourself while recommending them for any reluctant reader!

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