Why is tutoring necessary? Why not just more reading practice?
Explicit, Multi-sensory, Phonics Instruction More practice with the same instruction only leads to frustration and loss of confidence. A student may start to feel they are not smart enough and that there may be something wrong with them.
A student with who struggles with reading will guess at the sounds letters make because they seem to change without reason. They will get it right about half the time. With appropriate tutoring, guessing stops and success begins. Explicit instruction helps students understand the different sounds (phonics) a letter can make, and when and why that happens. This is crucial for them to build decoding (reading) skills as well as encoding (spelling) skills. Multi-sensory techniques (many senses) help students obtain concrete techniques and clues for abstract ideas, helping them stick.
With every new student, I make sure they understand they are very capable and will learn how to read when they are taught the way they learn best. Every struggling reader I have met has "super powers" (The Dyslexic Advantage enumerates those). When we stop focusing on what they can't do and start focusing on what they can do, their confidence and abilities soar.
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