Resources

 

Definition

Dyslexia is a specific learning disability that is neurological in origin. It is characterized by difficulties with accurate and/or fluent word recognition and by poor spelling and decoding abilities. These difficulties typically result from a deficit in the phonological component of language, and are unexpected, considering other cognitive abilities and the provision of effective classroom instruction. Secondary consequences may include problems in reading comprehension and reduced reading experience that can impede growth of vocabulary and background knowledge.


Characteristics

Individuals with dyslexia usually have some of the following characteristics.

 

Difficulty with oral language
•      Late in learning to talk
•      Difficulty pronouncing words
•      Difficulty acquiring vocabulary or using age appropriate
          grammar
•      Difficulty following directions
•      Confusion with before/after, right/left, and so on
•      Difficulty learning the alphabet, nursery rhymes, or
          songs
•      Difficulty understanding concepts and relationships
•      Difficulty with word retrieval  or naming problems

Difficulty with written language
•      Difficulty putting ideas on paper
•      Many spelling mistakes
•      May do well on weekly spelling tests, but there are
          many spelling mistakes in daily work
•      Difficulty in proofreading

Difficulty with reading
•      Difficulty learning to read
•      Difficulty identifying or generating rhyming words, or
          counting syllables in words (Phonological Awareness)
•      Difficulty with hearing and manipulating sounds in words
          (Phonemic Awareness)
•      Difficulty distinguishing different sounds in words 
          (Auditory Discrimination)
•      Difficulty in learning the sounds of letters
•      Difficulty remembering names and/or shapes of letters
•      Reverses letters or the order of letters when reading
•      Misreads or omits common small words
•      “Stumbles” through longer words
•      Poor reading comprehension during oral or silent reading
•      Slow, laborious oral reading


How is Dyslexia Diagnosed

The diagnosis is clinical ... which is why Language Skills requires testing before we match a therapist to a student. 

We require educational and psychological testing to access the educational needs for a student. Orton-Gillingham does not help all students all the time. Since therapy is a significant commitment of time and treasure we want to ensure, as much as possible, that Orton Gillingham will provide results. 

This testing can be done by the school district or privately. Your student may already have undergone testing by their school and Language Skills accepts these results. When you speak with our coordinator she will determine what you need to submit in order for your student to be evaluated for our program.


 

The Orton-Gillingham Approach

 The treatment is educational ...
The Orton-Gillingham Approach is a research-based, reading, writing and spelling curriculum which is:

  • designed for dyslexic readers and certain others struggling with literacy skills.

  • validated by scientific reading research sponsored by The National Academy of Sciences emphasizing phonemic awareness, phoneme segmentation, the alphabetic principle, decoding, reading comprehension and fluency.

  • flexible and individualized.  Diagnostic/prescriptive teaching enables the teacher to adapt the curricular elements to the needs of each student.

  • effective for all ages.  A skilled Orton-Gillingham therapist can help students to achieve their potential and succeed in general education classes from grade school through college.

  • success-oriented.  Materials are presented in a direct instruction, multisensory format.  Elements are introduced sequentially with cumulative review.

  • sequential skill-building starting with the basics and advancing to highly complex language elements.  Reading and spelling accuracy improves, often dramatically, as students learn to utilize letter-sound correspondences, syllable division patterns and spelling generalizations to decode and spell words.

  • integrative with reading and spelling taught together using the visual, auditory and kinesthetic modalities simultaneously.


What About Math?

Because mathematics is also a language, students may experience problems remembering and managing math symbols. Mathematics assistance is also available.


 

Additional Resources

 

For additional information regarding dyslexia and other learning disabilities:

The International Dyslexia Association (IDA) interdys.org

The Oregon Branch of the International Dyslexia Association (ORBIDA)  or.dyslexiaida.org

The Learning Disabilities Association of America  (LDA)  ldanatl.org

Decoding Dyslexia Oregon  decodingdyslexiaor.org

For information about our teaching methods:

The Academy of Orton-Gillingham Practitioners and Educators (AOGPE)  ortonacademy.org

The Academic Reading Therapy Association  (ALTA)  altaread.org