(WJBK) - Opening a book can open up a whole new world for kids.
But for some, reading can be such a challenge that it keeps those books closed because of learning disabilities, like dyslexia or ADHD. Sherry Margolis spent some time with a family, who's come up with a way to help because they understand those challenges, firsthand.
Much of his life, Jacob Blumenstein couldn't read because he was dyslexic. He didn't know it, and neither did anybody else until he was finally diagnosed, in the fifth grade. Jacob's not alone; his siblings deal with other challenges that make it hard to read like anxiety and ADHD.
The Blumensteins know that a lot of kids face the same type of challenges they do. So they came up with an idea to help.
It’s a free website, called "Kids Read 2 Kids."
Kids read abridged versions of classic novels to other kids. The family enlisted some of their friends to help reading books like “The Wizard of Oz," "Peter Pan" "The Secret Garden" and the family's favorite, "Ann of Green Gables."
They read the books chapter by chapter so anyone using the website can go back and repeat the chapter again and again.
The website can be helpful for kids learning English as a second language. Kids who don't have access to books in their home or those who simply want to hear someone read them a story.
Active listening can help build reading and comprehension skills, skills that are valuable in and out of the classroom.
The Blumensteins all work together on the website. Jacob shoots and edits the videos, Alana helps write the copy and is one of the readers and 11-year old Reuben designed the superhero inspired logo.
Reading does take you to different worlds and can open up all kinds of possibilities. The Blumensteins hope their website will make a difference. They want to help share that joy of reading and inspire other kids who struggle to let them know, that they're not alone.
The Kids Read to Kids" website also includes links to other sites that provide information and support to improve reading skills.