When parents come to us, it is in those initial conversations that we feel their concern and sense of urgency to find resolve, having seen their child struggling with reading and writing. Parents have either observed reading and writing tendencies that have sparked their own concerns or they’ve gotten feedback from teachers or other educational professionals that their child is not where they should be. In some instances parents come to us in the early stages of a child’s literacy struggles, while others have hoped their children would catch up and have needed intervention for some time. For some parents we are their first stop and others have tried other resources, other educational programs, tutors and/or have spent thousands of dollars on educational testing. Parents come to us hopeful that their child has a chance at a life with less struggle than what they’re facing in their current learning environment.
No matter where your child is with their literacy struggles there is one thing that is absolute: struggling readers and writers benefit most from early intervention. So where do you start? Public and private schools have limited resources for differentiated learning and require diagnosis for IEP’s. Tutoring doesn’t typically address literacy skill-building, but can provide assignment-based support to allow a student to catch up on academic workload. Homeschoolers who are struggling readers and writers face the challenge of finding an effective curriculum to navigate literacy. Whatever mode of education your family subscribes to, if you have a struggling reader or writer, you will eventually begin the search for the most effective form of intervention and remediation.
Literacy Imagined checks all the boxes. Our certified literacy therapists offer weekly instruction, delivering curriculum via an online platform that offers high frequency practice in between weekly sessions. The convenience of a remote therapist allows you to be in your own home and attend sessions at a time conducive to your family’s schedule. There’s also a huge benefit in terms of progress and cost-effectiveness related to literacy therapy services versus the cost of tutoring. It is our goal to provide a better understanding of why professional therapy services we offer will benefit your child’s needs.
Our therapists are clinical educators that have experience, high-level education and have been certified to teach Structured Literacy by the Center for Effective Reading Instruction. Being certified allows our therapists to use Structured Literacy to benefit general education students that struggle with literacy as well as students with disabilities. Certified therapists use this approach to provide systematic, explicit instruction that integrates listening, speaking, reading and writing to emphasize the structure of language. We use structure of language to create awareness across speech sounds, awareness of syllable structure, sentence structure, the meaning of words and word parts and how words relate to one another. Beyond their education and experience, our clinicians understand the need to build a strong rapport with the student and make sessions fun in order to foster confidence in themselves and their literacy skills. It is our hope to strengthen areas of weakness with our knowledge of Orton-Gillingham methodology and Structured Literacy, but it is also our hope to create a joy for reading and writing in each of our students.
Our curriculum is based on 30+ years of the science of reading, understanding methods and a structure that best suits the psychology of language & literacy acquisition for struggling learners and taking into account the multisensory components of learning that benefit those with orthographic mapping and working memory weaknesses. Orton-Gillingham methodology used via a Structured Literacy Curriculum is the gold standard form of intervention for dyslexics and struggling readers and writers. Our curriculum is designed to be sequential, to form a strong foundation of each literacy concept, and cumulative, in order to promote mastery. Clinicians manage and customize the learning path for each student through the use of an online platform that is available to both students and parents, helping us gauge progress in between weekly instructional sessions. In this platform, scores of accuracy and rate of speed are reported when students play games for their weekly practice, while parents report performance on pen-to-paper assignments from their weekly practice. Four days per week of student games (15min) and three days per week of parent-led tasks(20min), is the proven amount of high-frequency exposure in the areas of decoding and encoding for struggling literacy learners to make effective progress.
When parent/child teams are ready to begin their journey with us, families find it very convenient that we are able to meet them where they are (literally). We understand busy schedules and fatigue from school, work, and extracurricular activities, so we are thrilled to be able to provide weekly instruction remotely, in the comfort of your own home, at a time that works best for your busy life. Given your availability, it is helpful to take into account when your child will perform their best. Some children perform better when they are fresh and ready to focus first thing in the morning, while others prefer to have the school day behind them when we meet. Each weekly instructional session is 45 minutes long, so it’s easy to find time on a weekday or weekend.
In many of our conversations with parents of struggling readers, we like to take the time to educate parents about how choosing professional literacy therapy over tutoring services will benefit them in the short and long term. When you have a child with language processing difficulties, tutoring is geared towards “catching up,” while therapy is designed to be a rehabilitating, corrective process, building skills that lend themselves to effective reading and writing. Because our therapy methods are based on the science and psychology of reading, they are proven to normalize and remediate language processing difficulties. Improving these skills tends to improve academic performance across a lifetime, saving families time and money. When parents can understand tutoring is not designed to improve a student’s language processing skills, but to help cope with academic demands, they can make a more educated decision on what best suits their child’s needs.