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Bumpy Books - A Local Idea Takes Off and Helps Children Read

Bumpy Books Are Designed to Help Your Child Read.
Diane Lilli

If you have a child who has problems reading, there is a new tool available for you.

And guess what – it’s great fun. After all, it was co-designed by an artist.

Karen Goldberg, an artist who lives in Glen Ridge, had an epiphany one day when she was listening to her cousin Ann Edwards, a Brooklyn teacher, specialist and adjunct Professor at St. Johns University in New York.

“Ann and I spend holidays together, and she would come to me and tell me she wanted to send something home with her students to help them with their reading problems,” said Goldberg.

“Ann is a certified Orton-Gillingham Practioner with over 17 years experience in her field,” said Goldberg. “She went to school for this, and got special training. She has a tutoring practice and helps children from young ages up through teenagers.”

Edwards specializes in helping children with various learning issues, including dyslexia.

Dyslexia is a language-based learning disability.

Dyslexia refers to a cluster of symptoms, which result in people having difficulties with specific language skills, particularly reading. Students with dyslexia usually experience difficulties with other language skills such as spelling, writing, and pronouncing words.

Dyslexia affects individuals throughout their lives; however, its impact can change at different stages in a person’s life. It is referred to as a learning disability because dyslexia can make it very difficult for a student to succeed academically in the typical instructional environment, and in its more severe forms, will qualify a student for special education, special accommodations, or extra support services.

Goldberg was fascinated to learn that the method her cousin utilizes to help children is based in a multi sensory approach, which makes sense, because unbeknownst to most adults; dyslexia is not a visual issue.

Scientists have discovered that most people with dyslexia have been found to have problems with identifying the separate speech sounds within a word and/or learning how letters represent those sounds, a key factor in their reading difficulties.

“All kids learn from many different avenues,” noted Goldberg. “They take the information in, and some people listen better, while others may read better, or remember it better. The whole basis is you take every input available and use it to learn.”

And thus, Bumpy books were born.

“We wanted something tactile that kids can trace,” explained Goldberg. “Each letter has these big bumps raised on the page. It shows you how to follow the letter. Everything is in lower case, and each letter is about 2 ½ by 2 ½ inches.”

Goldberg said the bumps work along with a verbal exercise.

“The bumps imprint the letters in their memory, and while they are doing this trey also say the sound of the letter, such as ‘a’, ‘apple’ and ‘aahh’,” she said.

The books are user friendly, and now this local artist plans to offer them to local schools.

“We have given books to libraries, and have sold them all across the county,” said Goldberg. “We are going to do a fundraiser at the Forest School in Glen Ridge. I really believe this would be a great thing for schools to use to raise money. Selling this through the schools provides the teachers and the parents with a tool for teaching the children.”

If you would like more information, or would like to purchase Bumpy books for your child or your school, contact Karen at www.bumpbooks.com. And, while you are on the site, be sure to check out the online experience, where your child can actually click on letters and listen as a child says the sounds.


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