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Children working in school at desks

"The basic purpose of everything that is done in the Orton-Gillingham Approach, from recognizing words to composing a poem, is assisting the student to become a competent reader, writer, and independent learner."

The Academy of Orton-Gillingham

Children reading under a tree

Orton-Gillingham and the Dyslexic Student

Orton-Gillingham is a direct, explicit, multisensory, structured, sequential, diagnostic, and prescriptive way to teach literacy when reading, writing, and spelling does not come easily to individuals, such as those with dyslexia. The approach is named after Samuel T. Orton and Anna Gillingham.  Dr. Orton was a neuropsychiatrist, pathologist, and pioneer in reading failure and related language processing difficulties and identified the syndrome of dyslexia in 1925 as an educational problem. 


Anna Gillingham was a gifted educator and psychologist known for her mastery of the language. Encouraged by Dr. Orton, she compiled and published instructional materials in the 1930s in what became known as the Orton-Gillingham Approach.  Since then, many Orton-Gillingham based programs have been developed from their work, such as the Wilson Reading Program, Spalding, and Barton. 

The AOGPE certification is for the Orton-Gillingham Approach and requires 30 hours of coursework plus a practicum for the Classroom Educator level, 60 hours of coursework plus a practicum for the Associate level, 100 hours of coursework plus a two-year practicum working with two different students for the Certified level and 300 hours of coursework plus practicums for the Fellow level. 


Dr. Fedora is an AOGPE certified Fellow, an International Dyslexia Association (IDA) certified Structured Literacy/Dyslexia Specialist,  and a Spalding Certified Teacher Instructor (SCTI).  She respects the validity behind Orton-Gillingham based programs for struggling readers but strongly believes that the training associated with the Orton-Gillingham Approach is the most powerful tool for teaching literacy to struggling readers.

2 kids' reading in a library.
Child working at his desk in school.

Orton-Gillingham and 
the  ELL Learner

Although Orton-Gillingham has long been associated with dyslexia, many educators have spent decades pushing for the curriculum in every classroom.  The Orton-Gillingham approach is an evidence-based, scientific approach to reading and writing instruction and involves direct, explicit, systematic and multisensory elements.  In particular, it works well for non-native English speakers - commonly referred to as “ELLs” or “English Language Learners.   Recent U.S. Census numbers show that currently about one in five public school students live in a home where English is not the primary language spoken. 

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