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Entrepreneurs from Pittsburg Create Reading Pen to Help Those with Dyslexia

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CRAWFORD COUNTY, KANSAS -

Growing up, reading was always a struggle for Pittsburg native Jamee Miller.

She says "I didn't like reading out loud in class of course. If we had to when we were in intervals where everybody got to read I'd make sure I knew what paragraph I'd be reading."

Jamee suffers from dyslexia, a learning disability that makes it hard to read, write, spell, and pronounce words. She didn't realize she had it till age 26 when she was failing out of community college. When she eventually went back to school at the University of Kansas she and her husband came up with a solution to help others like Jamee succeed.

"We were in an entrepreneurship class and I was struggling with the reading and it made me wish mom was there and that's how it developed."

Her husband Payden says "It came to her from a childhood experience that she had. Her mom and her would read together at night to finish up her homework. So her mom would read a page and then she'd read a page. And then she'd follow along as her mom read."

Soon the “Read N' Style Pen” was born. The pen helps those with language-based learning disabilities read on their own, reading the text out loud as the pen scrolls along.

Payden says "There are a lot of things out there that can read digital text. So anything that's online already, there's a lot of things that can help with that. But we found out that there's not really a whole lot of stuff available to help people read printed text already."

Jamee says having the pen as a child would've made all the difference.

"The world and books are something as a dyslexic that you miss out on a lot…I would've definitely been a whole library of books had I had it."

The “Read N' Style Pen” is still in the prototype stage. Last November the Millers accepted a $5,000 scholarship toward manufacturing their pen from Apple co-founder Steve Wozniak. They're planning to get a Kickstarter campaign running soon to have the pens produced in May. For more information on the "Read N' Style Pen" check out the info on their company website “Hidden Abilities.”

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