School and Teacher Information

Curriculums with Definitions:
  • LPL
  • Sonday Systems
  • Wilson Reading System


Orton-Gillingham is a highly structured approach that breaks reading and spelling down into smaller skills involving letters and sounds and then builds on these skills over time. It was the first approach to use explicit, direct, sequential, systematic, multi-sensory instruction to teach reading, which is effective for all students and essential for teaching students with dyslexia. 

How does Orton-Gillingham Help Students with Dyslexia?

In the 1930s, neuropsychiatrist and pathologist Dr. Samuel R Orton and educator and psychologist Anna Gillingham developed the Orton-Gillingham approach to reading instruction for students with "word-blindness," which would later become known as dyslexia. Their approach combined direct, multi-sensory teaching strategies paired with systematic, sequential lessons focused on phonics that included the use of auditory, visual, and kinesthetic channels. A multi-sensory approach means students are learning language by ear (listening), mouth (speaking), eyes (seeing), and hand (writing). The process involves listening to sounds and saying the sounds and names of letters while writing them. 

There is no cure for dyslexia, but the use of practices such as Orton-Gillingham has been proven to increase reading and writing scores for students who struggle with this learning disability. The Orton-Gillingham approach is geared towards students individually to help dyslexic students overcome their literacy struggles. By using multi-sensory tools to teach phonics sequentially, students are able to learn cognitively and become more confident in their reading, writing, and language skills. 

Structured Literacy - see page


Dyslexia Simulation

Reading Simulation

Activity Ideas
  • letter art
  • rhyming read-alouds
  • read alouds in general
  • letter sound cards - rapid practice
  • multi-sensory techniques
    • manipulating letter tiles to make words
    • tapping sounds to blend
    • kinesthetic tracing
    • cross-body air writing
Classroom Accommodations or Modifications
  • audio books
  • voice recorder
  • scribe or text-to-speech
  • simplified writing assignments
  • extended time
  • small, quiet settings for test taking
  • consistent routines and procedures
  • safe, engaging classroom environment
Kansas Dyslexia Initiative

The Kansas Department of Education (KSDE) supports strong phonics instruction for all students. Their efforts include The Every Child Can Read Act which requires third parents be provided detailed information concerning their child's reading progress as well as any and all reading interventions. KSDE also requires all students kindergarten through high school be screened yearly to monitor reading progress and to screen for potential indicators of dyslexia. They also support structured literacy which has its foundational knowledge in The Science of Reading.

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