Seven Mansfield City Schools teachers were back in the classroom last week, participating in 30 hours of specialized training for working with children who have difficulty with reading, spelling and writing of the type associated with dyslexia.
The Monday-Friday sessions at the Mid-Ohio Educational Service Center focused on the Orton-Gillingham approach to teaching. Training was led by Victoria Jones of the Institute for Multi-Sensory Education.
MCS teachers who participated included Chris Queen, Carrie Jeffrey, Lori Brumenshenkel, Whitney Glorioso, Angela Hilderbrand, Nancy Fensch, Beth Buchanan Keli Henry, Lisa Foley, Melinda Miller and Carol Houseworth.
Multisensory instruction is a way of teaching that engages more than one sense at a time. For children with reading issues such as dyslexia, the use of sight, hearing, movement and touch can be helpful for learning. According to the website of the Academy of Orton-Gillingham Practitioners and Educators, the instructional approach “always is focused upon the learning needs of the individual student.”
The site continues, “Students with dyslexia need to master the same basic knowledge about language and its relationship to our writing system as any who seek to become competent readers and writers. However, because of their dyslexia, they need more help than most people in sorting, recognizing and organizing the raw materials of language for thinking and use. Language elements that non-dyslexic learners acquire easily must be taught directly and systematically.”
Stephen Rizzo, the district’s chief academic officer, said the Orton-Gillingham training provides the tools for applying the approach in the classroom. “We recognize that students learn in different ways,” he said. “Current practices may work for a significant portion of students but not all. Orton-Gillngham is designed to help us with students who aren’t reading at grade level by using a multisensory approach.”
Source, Photo: Mansfield City Schools