Thousands of books in Australia will soon be made more accessible to those who struggle with dyslexia.
From classics to new releases, books will be published using the specially designed font Dyslexie, an ingenious method devised by Dutch graphic designer Christian Boer in 2008.
A dyslexic himself, Boer created the typeface to make it easier for those who suffer from dyslexia to read and keep up with their studies.
The font itself has been available to download for many years, but this is the first time it will be mass produced in Australia across a vast array of titles.
“By moving certain letters to the left of the right or extending the tail of the letter, it helped the focus to greater attract the interest of the reader, Publisher Jon Attenborough, the man behind ‘Dyslexie’s’ Australian expansion, told ABC.
We’ve added other factors to it by simply increasing the space and the depth between lines. We’ve added our own technique from our large print publishing, which makes it even easier again.”
Colloquially known as the ‘chubby font’, dyslexie changes the look and feel of words, using increased spacing, bold on every opening sentence and the same effect applied to any uncommon word. Whilst not a one-size-fits-all solution, this format has been proven to make decoding language and text, easier for many people with dyslexia.
“We don’t feel that it will be useful for all people that have dyslexia, because we know from research that reading is to do with the brain learning how to actually process print, Jodi Clements, National president of The Australian Dyslexia Association, told ABC.
So one of the first steps really is early intervention or being able to teach people with dyslexia how to actually decode written print.”
However, what Attenborough hopes is that dyslexie will provide a new start for someone dealing with dyslexia and make, even the smallest impact, on their future.
“What the dyslexie font brings to the equation is just a different way to help a child or a person with dyslexia to unravel and un-jumble.
We’re actually offering hope I think to many, many people to work out why they can’t read and perhaps this will just break the sort of deadlock which a child faces.”
Those wanting to order books published in dyslexie will be able to do so from bookshops around Australia, online and in libraries around the country.
For more information, or to download the font for yourself, visit the Dyslexie font website here.