About 20 years ago, when I first began offering students one-to-one Orton Gillingham based reading remediation, I was having to bribe my students to read long lists of words, word parts, and nonsense syllables. My enticements began with candy, moved to stickers, and finally morphed into a well-stocked prize box. This worked, but I found that I was getting my students hooked on external reinforcements, and that what I really wanted was for them to be internally motivated. I wanted to kindle a joy for learning.
How Could I Bring the Fun Factor into my Lessons?
I began to look around for game-like activities that could make the learning process fun. What I found were simple matching activities and bingo-like games, but nothing was addressing the specific syllable and syllabication rules. In addition, writing, inferences, following directions, main ideas/details, and other language based learning struggles, were pretty much all addressed through boring workbook pages. Clearly, I needed to create my own materials.
Orton-Gillingham-Based Reading Games:
Over the next ten years, I tapped into my training in the fine arts and created a plethora of card and board games for my struggling readers. Almost immediately, cajoling ceased and the need for rewards relinquished. Students shared that they couldn’t wait until our next session, and I was thrilled to witness my labored sessions transform into excitement and laughter. My students were happily reading 2 to 3 times the number of words per session and their progress accelerated.
Now I teach virtually all my struggling readers through a series of games. I tell my students that if they are not having fun, I’m not doing my job. In fact, I now create math games and multisensory math lessons too.
Where Can I Get These Games and Materials?
I know that teachers, parents and other specialists want access to affordable materials that can be used over and over again. This is why all my materials are available as digital downloads. I also know that it is important for students to try activities, so most of my individual product pages offer free samples. One of my favorite games, Puppy Party, helps students to master the short vowels sounds and is great for any Orton-Gillingham or phonics based reading program. CLICK HERE to get your free downloadable copy! You can buy my products individually, but the real value lies in my bundles that offer a discounted suite of games and activities. If you want to see all my bundles, CLICK HERE.
Dr. Erica Warren is the author, illustrator and publisher of multisensory educational materials at Good Sensory Learning and Dyslexia Materials. She is also the director of Learning to Learn and Go Dyslexia, in Ossining, NY. To learn more about her products and services, you can go to https://godyslexia.com/, www.goodsensorylearning.com, www.dyslexiamaterials.com & www.learningtolearn.biz