Monday, June 4, 2007

Orton-Gillingham Training

Today Cheryl and I started a week of Orton-Gillingham (O-G) training. Our school system is paying for the training, which is being presented by The Institute for Multi-Sensory Education.

The training is based on an approach to reading developed by Dr. Samuel Torrey Orton. Orton was a medical doctor who did pioneering work in the study of learning disabilities, particularly dyslexia. The five day training provides classroom resources and instruction in how to use them for one of the more popular applications of Orton's approach in the classroom today.

There are a number of Orton-Gillingham based approaches to the teaching of reading. All share a couple of common characteristics. They tend to be more highly structured than non-O-G based reading instruction. They place more emphasis on the sequential and cumulative nature of reading instruction. And they emphasize a multisensory approach that involves sight, hearing, and touching in the process of learning to read.

Our county is sending kindergarten teachers, reading specialists (like Cheryl), and elementary grade special education teachers (like me) to the training. The material is not difficult, but it does require that you implement it more or less systematically in a classroom.

The training is pleasant because it provides Cheryl and me an opportunity to spend time together at work - including the ride over there and back. Okay, she drove today and I slept about half of the way home. But we were still at least in the same car.

This is our last full week of school. We both go back to our schools on June 11 to pack up and check out. Then, summer...

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