The Orton-Gillingham Approach is the leading approach for teaching reading and writing to struggling readers and children with Dyslexia. Developed by Samuel Orton and Anna Gillingham in the 1930s, this approach is the basis of many popular reading programs like Wilson Reading Systems, The Sonday System, and Barton Reading System.
This approach identifies children’s current skills, and allows the instructor to create an individual reading program to teach phonological awareness, letter-sound correspondence, handwriting, reading, spelling, reading fluency, morphology, vocabulary, comprehension, and written expression. The skills are then taught in a multi-sensory way that maximizes visual, auditory, kinesthetic, and tactile processes to help build reading and writing skills.
Evaluations help identify a child’s current skill level and guide where to begin instruction. Continuous monitoring of verbal, non-verbal, and written responses guide future lessons and help to identify student challenges and progress.
Lessons are created for each individual student so their unique needs are met. Considerations of their unique profiles will guide instructional strategies and tools.
Linguistic concepts and phonics skills are presented in an ordered way that indicates relationships between new material and previously taught material.
Content is taught step by step so students can move from simple to more complex concepts. Shifts in content are based on mastery of taught skills.
Instruction is focused on using all learning pathways - Visual, Auditory, Kinesthetic, and Tactile. Students practice seeing, hearing, feeling, and using motions to build neural connections in their brains and increase literacy skills.
Students feelings about themselves and learning are considered within each lesson. Teaching is structured to provide successful experiences, increase confidence, and increase motivation.
Gillingham, A. and Stillman, B., 2004. The Gillingham Manual. Cambridge, Mass: Educators Publ. Service.