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Freedom Scientific Learning Systems Group Presents
The WYNNing Word
June 2009


A WYNN-WYNN for Mother and Daughter!

Larissa and Sharon Britton“Now that I have seen how WYNN is helping Larissa, I have taken steps to get my GED. I know with WYNN, it is possible!” exclaims Sharon Britton.

Recently Bill Baker, a Canadian dealer for the Learning Systems Group, received a heartwarming letter from Sharon Britton, stating, “I am writing to tell you about how WYNN has made such an incredible difference in my life and the life of my daughter, Larissa.” She went on to explain that she has dyslexia and that she did not realize dyslexia could be hereditary until she saw her daughter begin to struggle with learning in some of the same ways she did as a child. Sharon knew she must act quickly so that Larissa would not lose valuable learning time as she had when she was in school.

Diagnosis and Recommendations

Sharon is one of five children, four of whom excelled in school. None of her siblings was ever labeled a day-dreamer and lazy, as Sharon was. Since her siblings were so successful Sharon believed that in time she would also excel in school. “I honestly believed that I would wake up one day and be as smart as them.” That did not happen. Sharon dropped out of school in the ninth grade never realizing that she had a disability. Even her parents thought leaving might be for the best because school was such an unrewarding experience for Sharon.

Since Sharon remembered her own educational shortcomings, she was very concerned when Larissa’s 2nd grade teacher told her that Larissa was writing her name backward. Red flags went up in Sharon’s mind. Did Larissa also have learning problems? If so, Sharon was determined that Larissa would receive the appropriate educational tools to help her overcome her disabilities. She would not go through what Sharon had in her own youth. Sharon and the teacher decided to have Larissa tested. It was determined that Larissa was struggling in many areas of learning. She had difficulties with reading. Recognizing sight words and her ability to analyze new words were problems. Spelling was below grade level. While she seemed to understand things when presented in a one-to-one situation, her study skills were erratic and disorganized when working independently. She could not seem to focus on her assignments. As a result of the dyslexia screening test and tests performed by an optometrist, it was determined that Larissa’s visual efficiency accommodative skills and her ocular motor skills were below average as were her visual spatial skills and visual analysis skills. She also had problems with focusing, tracking, and visual memory. Larissa was diagnosed as dyslexic.

A therapy program was designed to help Larissa cope with her challenges. Sharon struggled to help her daughter. “To me it all looked like a maze of confusion. You see, when this therapy is given to a child with dyslexia by a mother with dyslexia, it is total confusion.” She explained that while this therapy would probably be a cake-walk for a person without dyslexia, for her it was a mass of dots and letters jumping all over different pages. Sharon gave up trying to help. The task was just too overwhelming. It proved to be just as difficult for Larissa.

A New Approach

At the beginning of each school year, Larissa would be placed in another “special program.” While she made some progress in these one-to-one situations, comprehension remained a major problem for Larissa. Then in the fifth grade, Larissa’s teachers suggested that WYNN be implemented into Larissa’s program. It wasn’t long until everyone saw that WYNN was making a dramatic impact on Larissa’s success in school. “I was overjoyed when Larissa began asking for books to read. There were no more excuses or pretending to read; she was reading and loving it!” exclaimed Sharon.

Larissa sitting at computer using WYNNAfter seeing what a difference WYNN had made for her daughter in school, Sharon knew it would be important for Larissa to have this software at home. The teachers gave her Bill Baker’s Web site address, and before long she had purchased WYNN for Larissa’s personal use. Sharon told us, “It was a price we were more than willing to pay so Larissa would not have to go through what I had to go through as a child. We were lucky to find out about WYNN. I wish there were a way ALL children and adults could have the chance to experience this amazing program.”

Web highlighting with WYNN

Bill Baker provided Sharon with an overview of the many powerful tools of WYNN. Soon not only was Larissa using WYNN at home, but so was Sharon. They were browsing the Web using WYNN to comprehend and enjoy the information they found. They both were thrilled that they could not only hear the words but could also have them tracked at the same time. No more jumping words and missing half of what they read! Sharon stated, “It was like a light going on for me. I knew I couldn’t wait to use WYNN all the time.”

Using WYNN

We asked Larissa what she found especially helpful about WYNN. She stated, “Reading on the Web and reading books. WYNN reads to me. It makes it easier for me to understand.” She was recently working on a research project at home that required her to use the Web to gather information. In the past, this would have been a daunting chore. With WYNN, she read the material, extracted information from the Web directly into WYNN, and completed the task with confidence.

She also finds it easier to put the information into her own words. She likes the fact the she is able to identify her errors when WYNN reads her writing aloud to her. “Without WYNN I wouldn’t be getting good grades. It just makes reading, researching, and writing so much easier!” Sharon added that it is a pleasure to watch Larissa work on the computer to search information with WYNN. Any parent knows what a delight it is not to have your child struggle with homework!

Reading a Web page using the WYNN Web browser

Larissa uses WYNN in the classroom for Health, Social Studies, Language Arts, and Spelling. Tracey Shaw, teacher assistant, scans textbooks into WYNN for Larissa’s use in class. Her teachers are very pleased with the progress she is making in her reading comprehension and research abilities. They are also impressed with the timely manner in which she completes her assignments.

Larissa’s success with WYNN has given Sharon the motivation to continue her own education. “Now that I have seen how WYNN is helping Larissa, I have taken steps to get my GED (General Equivalency Diploma). I know with WYNN it is possible!” She has seen her daughter’s grades improve, her confidence grow, and her desire to learn flourish. She sees all these same possibilities for herself and anyone who struggles with this type of learning problem. She says to adults and children who have been diagnosed with dyslexia, “Please don’t give up! You are never too old when it comes to learning.” She further exclaimed, “Thank you WYNN for giving my child and me this opportunity to get back into learning, and enjoy it, to boot! WYNN is helping to turn struggling students into winners!”

Sharon, I am sure all our readers are very proud of your goal to complete your GED. Good luck to you and Larissa!


Eye on the news Keep an Eye on the News

American Council on Education
GED Testing Service, a program of the American Council on Education, develops, delivers, and safeguards the GED Tests. Start at this site for accurate and reliable information about the GED Testing program.

Enter the ATIA AT Video YouTube Contest
ATIA is hosting an AT video contest on the popular YouTube Web site. ATIA invites you to create a short video that presents an inspiring story about how assistive technology has helped to change the life of an individual with a disability and helped to empower them to change their world.

ATIA Conference in Chicago
Freedom Scientific/Learning Systems Group will present the following workshops at the ATIA Conference in Chicago, October 29-31, 2009:

  • Powerful Access to the Internet using WYNN 5.1 – Friday, October 30, from 8 AM to 9 AM – Peggy Dalton
  • Atomic Learning and WYNN Provide Universal Design for Learning – Friday, October 30, from 1:15 PM to 3:15 PM – Beth Thomlinson

K-12 Technology Survey Reveals Interactive Whiteboards, Laptops Are Most Useful Classroom Tools
Educator responses are found in "K-12 Technology Tools and Trends 2009," a report that details what school and district technology coordinators and curriculum directors think about the technology they are currently using. The report also explores future technology growth in schools. (See eSchoolNews.com for more information.)

ISTE Unveils New Tech Standards for Teachers
The International Society for Technology in Education has revised framework focusing on what teachers should know to help students become productive digital learners. (See eSchoolNews.com for more information.)


Tip of the Month - Bright idea balloonTip of the Month

We recommend that you read Internet: Studying with WYNN and Internet: Browsing the Web with WYNN to learn more about how WYNN’s Internet features allow students to study with ease and do research more effectively.

Sun with smiling face WYNN Training Options for Summer Learning:

  • New Training Videos from Atomic Learning – Short videos that reinforce WYNN's ease of use with step-by-step instructions for every feature. Please follow the link to Atomic Learning Videos for more details about content and pricing. Don’t miss this opportunity for WYNN training at your convenience. And don't miss WYNN Product Manager Beth Thomlinson as she presents a hands-on workshop on Atomic Learning videos at ATIA Chicago this October.

  • New Tutorial Videos Available for WYNN Software from Learning Systems Group – These videos will help teachers and students to become more fluent with the use of WYNN, saving valuable time and providing greater educational benefits. Please follow the link to our Web site for information about these valuable training tools.

  • GoToMeeting – GoToMeeting allows us to conduct real-time online meetings and presentations of WYNN and TestTalker. All that's required is a high-speed Internet connection and a phone line for the audio. This is a great way to get a live product overview, see new product features, or explore the steps for using a particular function, all without leaving your desk. We are offering the following GoToMeeting opportunities:

    Using WYNN's Study Tools to Improve Study Skills
    Wednesday, July 22nd at 11 AM ET (RSVP by July 15th)

    Accessing the Internet with WYNN
    Wednesday, August 5th at 4 PM ET (RSVP by July 29th)

If you're interested in setting up a GoToMeeting for one of these dates, please email wynningword@freedomscientific.com.


WYNNing Word Archives

Want to view past issues of WYNNing Word? Please go to Archives of WYNNing Word Articles.

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About Freedom Scientific LSG

Freedom Scientific, Learning Systems Group provides products that are acclaimed for their easy-to-use interface, innovative technology, and flexible but powerful features. Designed by educational experts to enhance the learning process for struggling students, WYNN provides reading and writing solutions. Freedom Scientific LSG also created TestTalker, which provides test-taking preparations and worksheet completion. To find out more about our products, please visit us at www.freedomscientific.com/lsg.


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For more information, call 1-800-444-4443 or e-mail wynn at freedomscientific.com.

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