My name is Katie. I am an academic coach, who specializes in the remediation of dyslexic and dysgraphic students. I have twelve years tutoring experience mostly in reading and writing, but also in math up through middle school. I am trained in the following methods: The Orton-Gillingham Approach The Lindamood-Bell Approach Visualizing/Verbalizing Comprehension Approach Multi-sensory Written Language Approaches Traditional Basal Approach Touch-Math (multi-sensory math approach) I have wo... [more]
Grammar can be a bit of a drag for a lot of students. So, I use a program called "When They Can't Write", that builds grammar in a way that is sequential, and has a lot of fun, multi-sensory activities. They end up understanding grammar, and how grammar can be used to enhance creativity, and how it can HELP express the individual's voice as a writer.
After spending hours writing a paper the first time, proofreading it yourself is usually not the best idea. I can be a third party, who has great grammatical instincts; I can help you structure your ideas and thoughts and bump up your vocabulary choices a notch or two; I understand what is needed from different writing styles; and my students almost always get A's on the projects we edit together. And we have fun doing it! I will also help you find your personal voice as a writer, if that is something you are seeking guidance with.
Elementary School is the the time when study and learning habits begin to form, and it is important to be taught the right skills and strategies that work for that particular type of learner and personality. I am extremely adaptable with various types of learners who have various levels of attention, organization, and talents. It is also important to have positive reinforcement, and to have someone who can help the student discover their specific strengths, and maximize them, when it comes to school and learning. I relate to many different types of students, particularly the slightly quirky, creative types, who need guidance in the areas of reading, writing, and rote math facts. We will work together and get those good habits in place, and find what's really wonderful about learning, and how to tolerate what is challenging and stressful about it.
I have been working with many dyslexic students for the past five years. A person with dyslexia tends to struggle with phonics, more than anything else. I am trained in a program called The Orton-Gillingham Approach, with builds phonics in a synthetic manner. Synthetic means "from the smallest unit up". I begin with the sound unit, the individual sounds that make up words (c) (a) (t) or (m) (u) (ch). Sometimes a single sound can be made up of more than one letter, like in mu(ch). Then, I moves to the syllable unit (in) (tro) (spec) (tive) or (sub) (se) (quent) (ly). Next, is the word unit, then the sentence unit, then the paragraph unit, and so on. Another huge element of Orton-Gillingham is learning the six types of syllables. There are only six types of syllables in the English language, and every syllable can fit into one of these types. Therefore, when you know the rules of each of these syllable types, you can read ANYTHING. A lot of my students make tremendous leaps after they have learned and mastered the syllables. Phonics is a huge part of reading, and I teach it in a way that students REALLY get it, and apply it. Plus, the methods I use are multi-sensory, meaning they use multiple senses. Therefore, they are a lot of fun! No worksheets!
I have a degree in Theatre, a BFA, from The Boston Conservatory. In addition to this degree, I have studied with top acting teachers and coaches in New York City and Los Angeles. I, also, in addition to tutoring, am an actor. I helped start a critically acclaimed theatre company, called 2Cents Theatre Group, which is in residence at the Hudson Theatres in Hollywood, and is just over a year old. I have acted in many plays, musicals, films, and appeared on TV several times. In addition, I have directed a few productions, and coached friends and students on auditions and/or projects they're involved in. I was chosen as the Voice and Speech Assistant at The Boston Conservatory my senior year, an honor that is only given to two students in the senior class. I also taught Voice and Speech, Dialects, and Acting at the Young Actors Camp in LA for a summer. I won an MET Award for "Best Actress in a Play" for my portrayal of Catherine in "Proof" by David Auburn in 2011. I love working with people on script analysis, because it's very fun for me, and I'm also quite skilled at it.
I have worked with many students who had ADD/ADHD. I mostly work with dyslexic students, and 50% of dyslexics also have ADD/ADHD. The learning strategies have to be more hands-on, because sitting still and focusing for long periods of time is very challenging for these students. It is also important to give them frequent, short breaks so that they can get quality work done, during the time they are working. Also, there is, many times, another problem such as dyslexia or dysgraphia, in addition, which is causing difficulty in school. Sometimes, there is not, but it's important to look at these things closely, so proper remediation can be put in place.
The majority of my experience with tutoring has been with children, and some adults, who have dyslexia. I have helped over 100 students who have been behind in reading and writing, due to dyslexia, improve significantly. The method I use most often, which has been very effective, is Orton-Gillingham. I have been working with it for the past twelve years, and it is the right method for 95% of my students. However, I am also trained in Lindamood-Bell, Visualizing/Verbalizing, and multi-sensory Written Language Approaches. Most students with dyslexia also have some form of dysgraphia. Therefore, when my students have writing assignments, I spend a lot of time helping them develop their own writer's voice, while teaching them structure and organization of their ideas. I have also developed my own fluency method called "Reading with Instrumentals" that has been very successful with my students, when working on their fluency skills. Working with dyslexic students is what I am best at, most comfortable with, and where I really excel as an academic coach.