Describe the students you help with reading at Pinecrest:
I work with the students that classroom teachers feel could benefit from additional support in the area of Reading, primarily first and second graders. I work with these students twice weekly in a small group setting. My responsibility is to help support and reinforce what the teachers are doing in the classroom, to help with mastery of new skills and concepts that are being taught. What inspired you to become a Reading Specialist?
One of my children really struggled with learning to read and spell when she was in first grade. I had her tested by an educational psychologist, and she was diagnosed with Dyslexia. The recommendation was to have her work with an Orton Gillingham tutor. I began to learn, while working with my daughter and her tutor, that this approach to teaching reading was unlike any I had learned about in college. So, I decided to get trained. What special training did you receive in the area of reading?
In addition to having been Orton Gillingham trained, I have my Bachelor's degree and Master’s degree in both regular and special education. I am certified in Elementary and Middle Grades, and I am also Gifted and Talented certified. Describe some of the creative techniques you use to help kids become successful readers:
My main goal is to make students feel successful and confident about their ability to read. I strive to make reading fun and engaging. I sing songs, play games, and try to teach my students tricks to help make things easier. It is all about differentiation. I want kids to know there is more than one right way to do things. Everyone is different, so we explore many strategies till we find what works best. One trick I use to keep students motivated is that I will stand on my head!. I tell the students that if they WOW me… I will WOW them. It is really fun to see how hard these kids will work to try and get me to stand on my head! You never know what it will be...a student could ask a great question, help a friend, or show me in some way how hard they are working. Can you share a couple of your success stories?
Every student that I work with is a success story. I have had the opportunity to work with so many amazing children and their families. It is all about teamwork. If I had to say what I am most proud of, it is that I have had so many lasting relationships that began with my just being a child’s tutor. I have had the pleasure of working with some students for as many as five years and counting. It is so rewarding to be a part of their progress and to watch them gain confidence and grow.