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 Learning to read takes several years of formal schooling with approximately 180 hours, equivalent to one school year or more in each grade level for students without language difficulties, and learning to spell is typically taught until high school, therefore if a grade two or three student has not learned to read and spell in a classroom setting, this signifies that he needs further help in learning to read and spell



What is the best and the most appropriate and effective reading program for a student with dyslexia?

The reading program for an individual with a specific language difficulty called dyslexia should be individualized and the instruction should be explicit, structured, systematic, and cumulative phonics-based method because the English language is based on sounds that represents the language at the elemental level. This teaching principle to read and spell applies to any language with an alphabetic writing system that represents language at the phoneme level (sound), including the French language.

  • The reading teacher MUST know the root cause of the student's reading problem and MUST know what and how to start the student's literacy instruction; for example, if the student does not know the sounds of the language then the reading teacher must teach the sounds first and must start with the individual sounds.

  • The sounds of the language are the basic building blocks of words, the foundation or the backbone for learning to read and spell, therefore it is very important to teach the speech sounds correctly, because it will greatly affect the learning process; for example, although the words "hat," "hot," "hut," are just differ by vowel sounds,  the words mean differently from each other.

  • In addition to learning the sounds, the instructor should teach the student how to connect, change, remove, pull out and put back the sounds correctly so that the student can read and spell unknown words, such as "tab," "mud," "crin," " blog," even if he has not seen these words.

  • Added to the sounds, the student must also learn how to analyze the words by identifying the the rules of the language, the syllable types, and strategies, as well as the word parts and how to manipulate those word parts, so that longer words are manageable to read and spell; such why we double the t from the word squatted, how to use the tch such as fetch, catch,  and how to manipulate those longer words; tannic, sanctify, acclaimeer, etc.

  • The reading teacher should explain the instruction in a clear and detailed manner to avoid confusion and should provide examples of the concepts using the seeing, touching, and hearing with "I do," "We do," and "You do, "methods to reinforce learning.

  • The student needs to learn the concepts in a step by step manner and the concepts should be broken down from the simplest to the most difficult level to prevent frustration. For example, with strategies in reading and spelling, the student should learn the same ending sounds -ng such as bang, hang, lang, pang, before introducing blang, clang, sprang etc.

  • Each concept should be mastered and the student must reach the fluency of that lesson before moving on to the next level so that the next step would not be too difficult for the student to learn. It would be too difficult for the student to read the words such as rabbit, commit, anvil, suffix, if he is struggling to read minimal words such as rab, bit, it, com, vil, fix etc.

  • If the student has specific difficulties in learning certain concepts, such as difficulties in blending some sounds and/or confusion with b/d/p/, the teacher must address that issue as soon as possible and before introducing the next lesson.

  • An individual with dyslexia tends to forget easily, therefore the student needs a consistent and accurate practice of the lessons he has learned. The reading teacher MUST from time to time, review the previously taught concept such as the rules of the c, k, ck, as well. The short sounds /a/, /u/, and /o/ MUST be drilled precisely and their corresponding words must be practiced accurately so that the next level of learning would not be compromised.

  • Since most individuals with dyslexia may have poor organization skills, he needs a predictable and consistent environment that is also free of destruction, for example, he should know what he should do first and expect what to do next in his lessons.


Although learning to read and spell will take time for an individual with dyslexia, parents must be able to see the progress of their child's reading and spelling skills within the 15 sessions of instruction. The student should be able to learn some sounds and be able to read and spell a few minimal words such as "lad," "rap," "tag," even if he has not seen these words


But it is necessary to be realistic in setting learning to read and spell goals for the student, and parents should not expect their child to reach his appropriate grade level even after a year of intensive reading intervention because there is NO such thing as a quick fix literacy intervention. It involves many factors such as the student's capacity to learn, the severity of his language problem, his reading gap level, how often he sees the tutor, etc., and there are so much concepts to learn

However, if the student is not making progress within the 15 sessions of intervention, the teacher MUST re-evaluate the program, or parents should change the tutor!​

Finally, if the aforementioned reading instruction is the most effective way to teach reading and spelling for students with a specific learning disability called dyslexia, imagine the progress of students without learning difficulties. Within 180 days of a kindergarten level, children will be fluent in reading and spelling one-syllable words that follow rules and in grade one they can read and spell one-syllable words with blends!

 Your decision today is your CHILD'S tomorrow!

Multisensory Reading Clinic, Reading Specialist- Montreal, Laval, Quebec, Orton-Gillingham Tutor, Dyslexia Specialist, Learning Disability Specialist, ADHD Reading Tutor, Autism Reading Tutor, Special Needs Tutor, Learn to Read Tutor, Intellectual Disability Reading Tutor
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Multisensory Reading Clinic Dyslexia Therapeutic Tutoring     Orton-Gillingham Instruction

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