How to Turn on Text to Speech on Your Mobile Device

Text-to-speech allows you or your child to
have digital text read aloud. Here’s what it looks like. “Remember to put your homework in your backpack.” Text-to-speech is one of the most important
assistive technologies for kids with reading issues, like dyslexia. The great thing is that this powerful technology
is built in to most mobile devices, like digital tablets and even that smartphone in your pocket. You don’t need to download any apps. You just need to activate it. Here’s how. On an iOS device, like an iPhone or iPad,
start in the Settings app. Under “General,” tap “Accessibility.” Next, tap “Speech.” Finally, turn on “Speak Selection” and
“Speak Screen.” This will give you two options for reading
text aloud. “Speak Selection” will read aloud words
you select. “Speak Screen” will read aloud all the
words on a screen, starting from the top. To use “Speak Selection,” select a word
or a group of words. When the “Speak” button appears, tap on it
to hear the selection read aloud. “Remember to put your homework in your backpack.” To use “Speak Screen,” swipe down with
two fingers from the top of the screen to hear the words on that screen read aloud. “In Trouble Again. It’s always there, like the ground underneath
my feet.” You can change several “Speech” settings
on an iOS device. For example, you can speed up or slow down
the speaking rate, choose the voice and even correct how certain words are pronounced. On an Android device, like a smartphone or digital
tablet, you can also read text aloud. The text-to-speech feature on Android is called
“Select to Speak.” To turn it on, start in the Device Settings
and tap “Accessibility.” Next, tap “Vision.” Finally, tap “Select to Speak” and turn
it on with the onscreen switch. The “Select to Speak” icon will appear
on the screen. You can move it to a new location by using
drag and drop with your finger. To hear text read aloud, tap the “Select
to Speak” icon. Then, drag a box around the words you want
to hear. “Remember to put your homework in your backpack.” The text-to-speech settings can also be changed
on an Android device. For example, you can change the voice and
make the speed faster or slower. Once you’ve activated text-to-speech, show
your child how it works. Then, make sure your child gets lots of practice
using it. Text can be read aloud from the Internet,
digital books, emails and even text messages.