This is a sample of the Indiegogo page. You cannot order until the Indiegogo has commenced. ROOT is patent pending.

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Teaching a child to read using a finger to point out letters, phonics and words can be inaccurate and lead to confusion about what to read. ROOT solves this. ROOT is an innovative tool that helps anyone from moms and dads to teachers focus developing readers on all aspects of language; words, letters, phonics, sentences, and punctuation, using light to spotlight like a highlighter. ROOT will change the way learners absorb information. Thank you for looking at ROOT and hopefully supporting this awesome idea… Chad (a dad of two boys and inventor of ROOT)

What is ROOT

ROOT is a handheld device that emits a rectangular shaped light beam whose adjustable width is controlled using your thumb on an easy to use slider. Root is used to highlight the elements of reading just like a regular highlighter. ROOT can also be used to clearly highlight anything printed on paper, from math equations to scientific notations, musical notes and more. 

Like myself many adults toil with teaching children to read but love the time spent with them and a great book. ROOT makes learning easier and turns reading into a fun and interactive activity for any young child. Say goodbye to distracting fingers crossing the page and accidentally covering parts of words. ROOT clearly highlights exactly what is to be read or understood including hard to learn consonant digraphs like the ch, sh and th sounds. It’s a virtual highlighter you use in place of a pointer or fingertip.

“I was able to use the ROOT prototype and I think it will revolutionize the way teachers teach. It’s a very clever and useful invention”

Christy Wheeler

MA. Reading, 2nd Grade Teacher

We live in a world where literacy can be the difference between success and failure. By supporting ROOT you will become the catalyst for improving a child’s life somewhere. Be it your own child or a donated device to a reader in need, you’ll be a part of something powerful and far reaching. Being a ROOT supporter will ensure this amazing device finds its way into the world community.
I endorse ROOT as it’s a truly unique device that will definitely help children become stronger readers. Chris Roe

MA, Education, State of Colorado

How was ROOT born, my story.

I invented ROOT (named because it develops “roots of reading”) for my youngest son after months of teaching him the old fashioned way using my finger to point out phonics and break down complex words. One night I had the idea to use a small flashlight and point the unfocused beam on letters and phonics, using a playing card to “cut off” the light on the edges. It didn’t work very well, but I had discovered the power of light and knew I just needed to harness it. Once I realized what I wanted to accomplish, I spent hours at the hardware store picking through everything, ultimately buying enough odds and ends to build the prototype. The next few weeks were spent making what would become ROOT, cutting parts and using duct tape and sticky putty getting the light to focus as necessary. Although the prototype was not pretty, nor as accurate as the professionally engineered ROOT, it was enough to teach my young boy to read. I knew I was on to something spectacular.

“My dad used his light to help me learn to read. I think it was cool and fun and I loved it.” Aiden Darnell

8th Grade Student (Chads Son)

“The first five years of life are a time of enormous growth of linguistic, conceptual, social, emotional, and motor competence.” Barbara T. Bowman (Chair)

From “Eager to learn, Educating Our Preschoolers” , Erikson Institute for Advanced Study in Child Development, Chicago

The current design is carefully crafted and engineered with hours of research and development. A lot of time was invested in ROOT to simplify the experience and make it fun for the reader. Its size was designed so it’s both comfortable and easy to use. When you hold ROOT in a writing position, the “feather touch” slider allows for smooth operation. Small thumb movements change the shape of the light from a square highlighting one letter to the rectangle spanning an entire word or words. The light is intended to highlights a letter, phonic, one word, punctuation or perhaps the first part of a complex compound word. I can also be used to help solve math problems, highlight complex scientific equations and even teach music. Afraid of losing it? Me too, that’s why ROOT will have a sturdy clip so you can affix it to the cover of a book. The working prototype of ROOT just needs a few minor improvements.
ROOT is designed for everything from text books to bedtime stories. If it’s printed, ROOT will work! We’re also trying to engineer it to work with e-books.
ROOT is designed using LED technology with an intended battery life to exceed that of childhood. Its small portable size will make it easily distributed anywhere in the world.
For an expected retail price under $20.00, ROOT will be an affordable tool everyone can use to transform a beginner into an accomplished reader.
Size: 5.25” x 1.5” Weight: approximately 2.5oz with battery. Color: ROOT will be manufactured in fun mixed colors.

After Market

ROOT is designed with personalization in mind. As we engineer, we’ll insure that ROOT will be perfect for wrapping or skinning. This will allow the user to visually transform ROOT. From glow in the dark stars to logos for companies looking to distribute the device, each ROOT can be made to look however you want. I envision securing licenses from the NFL to Disney and more.

Development Plan

The Kickstarter funding will cover three phases.

  • Phase 1. Brighten light and improve focus edges. Find a reliable and long lasting battery.
  • Phase 2. Improve ergonomics and finalize aspects for manufacturing. Design specifications for skinning.
  • Phase 3. Source manufacturing, create molds, manufacture and ship products to backers.

Budget and timeline

  • Finalize battery and brighten light  4/1/2016 $3,000.00
  • Clean up ergonomic, finalize and make final working prototypes 5/15/2016 $3,000.00
  • Trouble shoot and solve any problems 6/15/2016 $2,000.00
  • Build molds 7/15/2016 $15,000.00.
  • Manufacture initial run 8/15/2016 $9,000.00.
  • Ship to backers 10/1/2016 $2,000.00.
  • Reserve (to cover any unexpected expenses) $5,000.00
Phase 1 will be handled by myself and an engineering company in Longmont, Colorado. For phase 2 we may use backer input so please get in touch! Phase 3 will be a traditional relationship with a manufacturer most likely sourced in China. I have sourced manufacturing before and my engineering company will also help out. Survey and campaign management will be done with Backerkit.com and shipping will likely be outsourced to a company like fulfillrite.com to ensure proper and timely delivery. Fulfillment costs have been accounted for in the shipping and handling fee.

Stretch Goals

$50K If we exceed the funding goal, I’ll work with a manufacturer to create “do-it-yourself” labels that will run through a home printer allowing the user to personalize ROOT. $100K Manufacture in multiple colors as chosen by backers. $150K Add a timer so you can track how long you’ve read.

My Commitment

As a professional childrens magician I work mostly weekends in the Denver, Colorado area. During the weekdays I will commit 100% of my time to making ROOT a reality. I have a background in manufacturing and have sold over 2,000,000 units of my previous products. I have nearly 25 years of entrepreneurial business experience. In 2015 I funded an IndieGoGo campaign over 200% that involved sourcing manufacturing overseas. During that process I learned a lot about the steps necessary to complete a campaign as well.

In closing

Once a child learns to read it opens up a whole new world. Please join me and help ROOT become a reality by funding today at any level. I would love to have you play a part in changing the world one child at a time.

ROOT is Patent Pending and protected under US Patent Law.