Reading Support

We offer beginning reading skills based on the Orton Gillingham (OG) Approach to reading that we adapt for children with special needs (Autism, ADHD, Global Developmental Delays, etc.). Beginning reading skills (JK to Grade 2 level) are taught using an individualized, structured, repetitive, phonetic, multi-sensory approach.

Skills taught within this program may include:


  • Visual recognition and recall of consonants and vowels sounds; this includes the ability to print the letters based on their name and their sounds.
  • Learning to blend then read and print simple three letter words (e.g. mat, cap, hop)
  • Learning to read and print words with consonant blends (first two letters and last two letters in words such as frog and sand)
  • Learning to read and print basic sight words to support reading and printing sentences
  • Learning to read and print two syllable compound words (e.g. batman, sunfish)
  • Learning the difference between an open and closed syllable and how it impacts the vowel sound
  • Learning to read and spell words with silent e
  • Simple spelling rules such as:  The “floss” rule and short vowel markers such as -ck, -tch, and -dge
  • Learning to read vowel teams

 Who can benefit from this program?

This program is helpful for children who can read but avoid writing.  As occupational therapists, we frequently help children who have mild motor difficulties with handwriting and significant difficulties decoding (breaking apart the various sounds in a word) to write words or sentences.  Despite having the ability to copy neatly, some children run into difficulty with writing when they have to multitask between generating an idea or sentence, remembering how to form the letters, and remembering what letters to use to spell the word.  By learning the basics of reading and how vowels and consonants work to an automatic level, your child can gain more confidence with writing at school.

The end goal is to jump start your child’s reading skills while simultaneously supporting any other identified occupational therapy goals (fine motor, gross motor, and sensory processing).   Once your child’s reading skills have gained momentum, strategies and recommendations can be easily shared with teachers and tutors to continue with their academic progress.

Occupational Therapy/ Speech Therapy or Tutoring? What is the difference?

As a parent you may wonder what the difference is between working with an OG reading tutor or one of our therapists. Our therapists have training in OG but are not certified, therefore, children who only have a language difference in their ability to read and spell would best be supported by an OG tutor.   By combining the OG approach to reading with our training in rehabilitation and medical background, we can support a child’s beginner reading goals, while simultaneously supporting any other identified therapy goals (articulation, fine motor, gross motor, and sensory processing).  Our focus is to offer children with more complex needs a developmentally appropriate jump start into their reading journey.

For additional information on the program, contact us.