It's hard to even know where to start. For over 20 years, hundreds of thousands of people worldwide have benefited from Irlen filter or lenses - there are volumes of letters and stories that people wrote on their own volition. Why would this be a placebo affect? Why would people believe they could read better if they could not? What benefit would that be for anyone?
No Irlen filter will not help everyone, nor will overlays nor will any new product on the market. The filters or overlays help only a percentage of people with this visual perceptual disorder as well as people with light sensitivity, headaches and symptoms from autism and dyslexia. They do not cure people, they help people. If a child struggles with the skills involved in reading or has dyslexia, he or she will still not read well because of these lenses - they are not magic - BUT they will simply make the words and letters clearer. Prescription glasses will also not make a non-reader a reader if he or she does not know how to sound out the words. Was any of this taken into account in this study? No. As someone else pointed asked: Where these children tested for the colors in the spectrum that would best suit them? I do not think so.
In a world where major drug companies are touting ADHA and numerous other trends of the day with cures, it's hard to claim that people making and marketing overlays are wrong for doing so because they make a living from it. Your doctor and dentist makes a living as well as does Angela for writing the article and the work she does. Even the non-profits of the world have a staff whom they pay, so the concern that people are making money in the this area is not valid in the scope of the world we are living in and the entire health care industry.
When Dr. Amen, noted in the field of brain scans and brain research and author of several best selling books stands behind Irlen filters it makes me question whether his testing or Angela Bunyi's single test has greater validity. With all due respect Angela, I'm going to go with Dr. Amen.
the comment about looking around the internet can be easily addressed by keeping in mind that you can find anything you want on the internet. As a strong proponent of adoption, I found people who are anti-adoption, as someone with statistics of the dangers of guns, I can find numerous people who think owning a gun is a blessing and site facts and statistics to support their argument. You can find any side to any argument on the Internet.
It's just hard to fathom why so many regular people worldwide would simply write about and talk about positive results if they have no reason to do so. Perhaps it's just too simple. People want high tech solutions or the latest pills. Overlays don't fit that level of complexity - they are simply something that helps some people.
It reminds me of someone trying to sell me on an amazing home cooling system. He was very distraught when explained that if my simple little air condition wasn't doing enough I had another solution - I opened a window. Overlays are a simple answer that work very well for some people, not all. Why mus you challenge someone's success? Nobody is saying everyone must buy them.
Sign up today for free teaching ideas, lesson plans, online activities, tips for your classroom, and much more.
Choose your grade range:
See a sample >