Summer Sessions Help Educators Help Students

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The Board of Directors of Reading ASSIST Institute (RAI) in Milford announced their 2011 Summer “Train With The Experts” speaker series beginning on Wednesday, June 29. This series will bring nationally recognized leaders in child literacy to Delaware to speak at RAI’s Milford location.

RAI has just finished up the school program and is in the process of collecting data that will be published to report on the children’s success. Due to the success RAI has enjoyed, local teachers have come to the Reading ASSIST Institute to inquire about their approach to learning and ask for assistance.

“The summer sessions at the Reading ASSIST Institute will educate teachers and reading specialists how to teach children to read with a multisensory approach,” stated Sally Coonin, Director of Development and Public Relations. “In fact, 20-30% of children need more specific instruction to be able to read.”

Speakers for the summer session will include Dr. Susan Hall, President of the 95% Group and author of I’ve DIBEL’d, Now What?; educational consultant and professional development provider Deb Glaser; and Dr. Lucy Hart Paulson, a speech-language pathologist with a research focus on early literacy.

The first training session in the series will be held on Wednesday, June 29 featuring a morning and afternoon session. In the morning session Dr. Susan Hall will speak about multisensory techniques to teach phonological awareness skills. Participants will learn how to provide explicit, systematic and sequential instruction of the skills that are the framework for mastering the sounds of language and are the prerequisite skills for reading and writing.

The afternoon session will draw a blueprint for intervention and include explicit and direct instruction for a sequence of 7 comprehension processes. The multisensory approach includes gestures, color-coded graphic organizers, manipulatives and think-alouds for grades 2-8.

This latest initiative by RAI’s Instruction Department, headed by Judie Caroleo, Director of Instruction, attracted an audience of 280 teachers, administrators and reading specialists from around the tri-state area and highlighted the latest in reading research and instructional techniques. According to Caroleo, “It is so exciting to be able to offer a new level of expertise and range of knowledge to teachers in our area.”

The Reading ASSIST Institute is a non-profit agency that was developed in 1989 to improve the literary skills for children at risk for reading failure. With its operations mainly in Delaware it has also expanded into Pennsylvania, Maryland and New Jersey. The Milford branch which primarily helps with downstate public schools has Volunteer Tutor Program Venues in southern districts such as Milford, Indian River and Seaford.

The local Milford branch of the Reading ASSIST Institute is located at 1002 Mattlind Way and can be reached at 302-422-2299 or info@readingassist.org. To find out more about RAI and its Summer “Train With The Experts” speaker series visit www.readingassist.org.