My friend had a stroke just under a month ago and is still having problems finding the right words. Sometimes it's obvious what she's communicating, other times she can't and is very frustrated. She's got a lot better, but still has problems reading and getting the correct words. As I'm a Librarian I have access to a vast amount at books which use pictures with words aimed at those learning to read or learning English for the first time. She has promised me faithfully not to throw anything she considers too babyish at my head.
She expressed that pictures with words might help her read, and something resembling a pictorial thesaurus might help her use the right words. I will be cobbling together a selection of possibly helpful books, but if anyone knows of a book already in existence designed to help stroke patients please let me know.
The other thing I'm going to do is print out a page with numbers 1 to 10 on it with the number as a symbol and as the written word. This may seem odd, but she has from the beginning been using numbers to express ideas, so it might help. I wondered if there was a particular colour of words and background that would be beneficial to this page? I know that may sound weird, but I know that page colour & font make a huge different to reading for those with dyslexia, so this might be the case for other brain related issues.
Thanks for your help.
I've found black print on white paper very stark since my strokes. Blank on baby blue is much easier to read for me.
I know really you're asking the best background colour for learning rather than comfort of reading, but I think comfort of reading might make a difference too.
I read somewhere that yellow helps. When I used to work as a private tutor I used to get my tutees to do all their work for me on yellow paper. Partly because i'd heard it aided learning (I don't have any references for that though) and partly so that If they filed all their notes together they knew which were the ones from their additional tuition.
I work in education publishing and we offer quite a few paper colours (Green/lilac/salmon/yellow/pale blue and red I can remember seeing. Red I found really hard to read. All the other slightly nicer than black on white). I don't know which is meant to be best thought.
Thanks Leafygirl, exactly what I needed! I'll do what you suggest. Really pleased someone knew what I was going on about :)
Just realised you also asked about fonts.
Sans serif fonts are said to be better for learning.
Lots of schools use comic sans, but it's very childish and illicits rage in some people (including me) as it almost looks patronising to an adult reading.
A simple sans serif font (does tahoma have serifs?) is easy to read and you don't waste any brainpower trying to deciper the letters so you can use it all learning what's on the page.
Not script fonts as you waste too much brainpower trying to work out what the letters actually are.