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Orton-Gillingham  Approach

Orton-Gillingham (O-G) is a sequential, multi-sensory phonics-based approach to reading, writing and spelling.  Each letter in the alphabet represents a single sound of familiar speech (e.g. a-m-n) that is presented to the student, then sounds are blended into words that carry a meaning to them (e.g. man).  We introduce the letters utilizing the student's hearing, seeing, and feeling, therefore, integrating all of their learning pathways.  The multi-sensory approach helps to generate an automatic memory which can be so difficult for students in language learning.  This O-G approach goes from simple to the more complex, using reinforcement, and proceeding at a student's pace so they master the basic concepts.  Therefore, working at a student's pace, in a sequential presentation, while combining reading, writing, and spelling, will help the student to feel successful.  This approach provides:

  • explicit instruction in the written code of the English language;
  • one-to-one tutoring that allows constant interaction between the tutor and student to maximize learning each tutoring session;
  • a sequential step-by-step approach that is success oriented;
  • a positive learning environment that centres on enabling students to become self-correcting and independent learners.

 Example of some of the components:

  • Phonological Awareness;
  • Reading (decoding, identifying and correcting errors, comprehension);
  • Spelling (technique, identifying and correcting errors, non-phonetic words);
  • Syllabication
  • Basic Composition, Morphology.


Students usually show an increase in self-esteem and self-confidence almost immediately.  They also begin to settle more easily in her/his learning environment with the tutor's support and trust. The Orton-Gillingham approach can benefit students who are:

  • struggling with reading, writing and/or spelling;
  • performing below their expected levels;
  • have not been successful with other reading programs;
  • dyslexic;
  • guessing or struggling to read unfamiliar words.


Can I claim your tutoring on my taxes?    

It depends. While my remedial tutoring services are eligible to be claimed, according to the CRA’s website you will need a medical practitioner to “certify in writing that these services are necessary.”   I recommend that you check with your accountant for additional details and advice.



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