When my 11-year-old daughter was struggling with reading in second grade, her teacher invited her to be part of a reading club two days after school. Mrs. Vance was trained in Orton-Gillingham, and she utilized these multi-sensory methods during the after-school program. By the end of her second-grade year, my daughter was reading proficiently. It is possible that she just needed this effective method to get her “unstuck” and on her way to becoming a little bookworm.
When my younger daughter started struggling in Kindergarten, Mrs. Vance agreed to help her out. She also offered to help me advocate for her, as she entered first grade, so that her teacher could understand her struggles better. Eventually, she had Mrs. Vance for her second-grade teacher, and when she finally received her Dyslexia diagnosis, Mrs. Vance was able to implement accommodations immediately.
Because Mrs. Vance was not a full-time tutor, I knew I had to find someone else to work with my daughter on a more regular basis. Through her former preschool teacher, I found Lyn with The Twenty Percent Club, and she is making a huge difference in the life of my little girl. Lyn uses the Barton System, but my daughter actually had to start before Level I. She had to relearn some of the letter sounds, and some of her first lessons did not even include letters but only sounds associated with pictures and colored tiles. Now, she is about mid-way through Level III, and there are ten levels in total.
Here are a few suggestions for finding a tutor who specializes in Dyslexia:
- It is important to know that remediation is a journey. There is no quick fix! It can take 18-36 months for a child to “catch up” to her grade level.
- Look for a tutor who is trained in Orton-Gillingham, which is multi-sensory and sequential. It teaches phonetic awareness in a way that works for people with Dyslexia. It shows how sounds and letters are related and how they work in words. It also teaches how to read and spell, often by breaking a word down into smaller parts.
- There are several systems that are based in Orton-Gillingham, including the Barton Reading & Spelling System
- Here is a comprehensive list of questions to ask when looking for a tutor
- Here are some things to be aware of when looking for a tutor
- For support, join your state’s branch of Decoding Dyslexia, “a network of parent-led grassroots movements across the country concerned with the limited access to educational interventions for dyslexia …”
For a complete list of topics and links, visit the landing page for 31 Days: One Mom’s Journey With Dyslexia or click the square image below.