Sep 08


What is it?

The Orton-Gillingham Approach was developed in the early-20th century. It is an intensive, sequential phonics-based system that teaches the basics of word formation before whole meanings. The method includes all of the learning modalities, or pathways, through which people learn—visual, auditory, tactile and kinesthetic. Unlike some scripted and rigid reading programs, the Orton-Gillingham Approach is a system that allows for flexibility.

The Orton-Gillingham approach is a powerful tool of intervention used in remediation for individuals with language based difficulties/dyslexia. The program is multi-sensory involving visual, auditory, kinaesthetic/tactile modalities for learning. It is also highly individualized (diagnostic/prescriptive) and focuses on mastering skills prior to developing new skills in areas of decoding, encoding, writing skills, and remediation.

The Orton-Gillingham Approach is…

1) Personalized – Recognizes the individual needs of learners.

2) Multisensory – Uses all the learning methods: seeing (visual), hearing (auditory), feeling (tactile), and awareness of motion (kinesthetic).

3) Diagnostic and Prescriptive – The instructor continuously monitors the verbal, non-verbal, and written responses of the student in order to understand both the student’s challenges and progress. This information is used to plan the next lesson. The lesson is designed to help resolve the student’s difficulties and build upon the student’s progress.

4) Direct Instruction– Lesson content includes explaining to students what is to be learned, why it is to be learned, and how it is to be learned.

5) Systematic Phonics – It uses systematic phonics, stressing the ‘alphabetic principle’ in the initial stages of reading development. The principle teaches that words are made up of individual speech sounds, and the letters of written words graphically represent those speech sounds.

6) Applied Linguistics – It formally teaches syllabic, morphemic, syntactic, semantic, and grammatical structures of language and writing. Involves the student in integrative practices that involve reading, spelling, and writing together.

7) Linguistic Competence – Stresses language patterns that determine word order and sentence structure and the meaning of words and phrases. Also examines common patterns and literary forms employed by writers.

8) Systematic and Structured – Information is presented in an ordered way that indicates the relationship between the material currently being taught and material previously taught.

9) Sequential, Incremental, and Cumulative – Learners move from the simple, well-learned material to the more complex, only after mastering each step along the way.

10) Continuous Feedback and Positive Reinforcement – A close teacher-student relationship that builds self-confidence based on success and mastery.

11) Cognitive – Students understand the what, why and how of the learning process. Confidence is gained as they improve their ability to apply new knowledge about the learning process itself.

12) Emotionally Sound – Teaching is directed toward providing the success. With mastery comes increased self-confidence and motivation.

Skills Addressed:

1) Decoding

  • Phonemes (sound/symbol, symbol/sound association)
  • All consonants, short vowels, long vowels, diphthongs, r-controls ,digraphs, initial /final consonant blends
  • Developing phonemic awareness
  • Linguistic patterns
  • Affixes and roots
  • Prefixes/suffixes
  • Silent letters
  • Sight words
  • Strategies for decoding one syllable words with up to five sounds
  • Decoding multi-syllable words using syllabication principles
  • Developing word attack skills using real/pseudo words
  • Decoding in context (developing accuracy, speed, fluency)
  • Definition/Concepts (consonants, short vowels, digraphs, blends, syllable)
  • Sight words

2) Encoding

  • Sound/symbol Association for all phonograms
  • Simultaneous Oral Spelling (S.O.S) technique
  • Segmentation of sounds
  • Isolating/Identifying vowel sounds (alphabetic principle)
  • Spelling rules/generalizations
  • Spelling in isolation
  • Spelling in context (phrases/sentences)

3) Handwriting

  • Print form/Cursive form
  • Size
  • Space
  • Pace
  • Organization

4) Writing Skills

  • Basic Simple Sentence
  • Punctuation
  • Syntax/grammar
  • Proof reading

5) Remediation

  • Visual discrimination
  • Visual perception
  • Visual Memory (symbolic)
  • Visual short-term Memory
  • Visual-Motor
  • Auditory discrimination
  • Auditory short-term Memory
  • Organization
  • Time management
  • Focus/Concentration/Attention
  • Self-esteem/Confidence
  • Reinforcing positive learning

Please Note: The above mentioned skills will be only integrated at the appropriate level of instruction and all may not be addressed (dependent on number/frequency of sessions and practitioners’ professional judgment).

Program Structure:

  • 10 sessions, 2x a week


  • Session are held in Brampton, Caledon, and Mississauga
  • Community libraries, community centers, and LDAPR satellite schools

How do I register?

1. Complete the registration form and submit via email or fax to the Programs Coordinator Amanda Partab, apartab@ldapr.ca

2. After we receive your registration form, we will connect with you to process a payment over the phone

3. Allow a minimum of 5-7 business days to process registration, payment and to schedule a tutor

4. Once everything is processed, you will receive a confirmation letter via email with your session start and end dates, tutor information, and location

Cost and Sessions:

Member Rate: $375.00/10 Sessions Non-Member Rate: $450.00/10 Sessions

Yearly Membership: $50.00