Rhode Island College (Special Education)
University of Connecticut (Master's)
I have taught the language arts for over 35 years, primarily 2nd through 8th grade. Now retired, I was fortunate enough to teach in a terrific school system in Connecticut for most of my teaching career. As a special education teacher, I was trained in the Orton Gillingham approach to teaching phonetic decoding and encoding. This method was embraced by Barbara Wilson, who developed the highly structured and prescriptive program, The Wilson Reading System. I have used the Wilson Program both in its entirety or incorporated into traditional programs for many years. Many students struggle to read fluently, are frustrated and confused by traditional approaches to reading instruction, despite having average to above average intelligence. I remind my students that Albert Einstein, Tom Cruise, and millionaire Charles Shwaub, to name just a few, all struggled with the process of learning to read. I truly believe that all students, with the appropriate instruction are capable of reaching their academic potential.
It has been my experience that teaching students who have not been successful within a traditional curriculum is tremendously exciting and rewarding. I have often found that students develop a unique group of strengths when learning does not come easy, When you often have to learn twice as hard to learn as others, a great work ethic and ability to focus can be developed. This serves a person well throughout their life. I take great pleasure in helping students make this journey.
First of all, I am a life-long learner and never have taken learning something new for granted. I hold a current teacher certification and license. I am highly trained in the area of reading, spelling and written expression, particularly with students who possess learning differences. I have extensively used the latest, best practice strategies and curriculum throughout my long career in education. This includes, The Wilson Reading System, Read Naturally, and a variety of computer assisted programs that I believe are worthwhile tools for enhancing language arts skills. I would love to have the opportunity, if possible, to work directly or indirectly with a student's existing teacher to share information and enhance carry-over of skills into the classroom. My Master's program in the NEAG School of Education at the University of Connecticut, as well as over 35 years of teaching students and working with their classroom teachers makes me uniquely qualified as a tutor.
I believe, first and foremost, my many years experience directly teaching students who have struggled to learn through traditional means only, enables me to provide meaningful instruction. I am a very upbeat and positive person. I take my cues form the student and always look to see how their existing strengths can work toward addressing their weaker areas of academic performance. I believe that while learning can be serious business, it doesn't mean that it can't also be exciting and fun. It is always my goal to form a partnership with the student in setting realistic academic goals that are shared, measurable and persistently carried out.
I think that spelling instruction can be enhanced by a teacher who has a very good knowledge of the structure of language. My training in the Orton-Gillingham approach to reading and spelling has allowed me to make spelling also part of the reading instruction. For example, if I am teaching the "vowel-consonant - silent e" syllable type as part of my reading instruction, incorporating it into my spelling lesson not only reinforces the reading instruction but the linguistically familiar pattern and additional practice usually sets the student up for success. Phonetically irregular words can be more challenging and ultimately through daily practice, games and increasing and encouraging more spontaneous written expression can be learned. Computer programs such as Spelling City, where custom made lists tied to a game format can make spelling more fun to learn.
I would love to hear from any student who feels we may be able to form a learning partnership. I always prefer to meet my students first (preferably a public place, such as a library or school classroom) and get to know them a bit before any decisions are made. Of course there is no fee involved for this first "getting to know you" visit. I look forward to meeting you! I have taught the language arts for over 35 years, primarily 2nd through 8th grade. Now retired, I was fortunate enough to teach in a terrific school system in Connecticut for most of my teaching career. As a special education teacher, I was trained in the Orton Gillingham approach to teaching phonetic decoding and encoding. This method was
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