Dyslexia Coach of N.J., LLC

Jennifer K. Slaight

Certified Dyslexia Specialist
Monmouth County, N.J.
Bergen County, Somerset County, Ocean County, Middlesex County

Private tutors for children & adults

JenSlaight@gmail.com
(732) 882.9695
Best Reading tutor in NJ 

FAQ
Frequently Asked Questions about dyslexia and our tutoring program

Common questions about dyslexia and private tutoring

Do you recommend a learning center, like Huntington or Sylvan, for tutoring dyslexic students?  What about Hooked on Phonics?

Those learning centers are "worksheet driven" and they do not specialize in dyslexia.  No real teaching is going on. The latest research still supports an Orton-Gillingham, multi-sensory approach for teaching people who have dyslexia. 

Dyslexics learn differently and therefore need to be taught differently, utilizing their strengths with a multi-sensory approach.

Hooked on Phonics will not work for someone with dyslexia because dyslexics have weak phonemic awareness which is the core of that program. A multi-sensory approach has been proven most effective.


Does the student need to be officially diagnosed as dyslexic in order to benefit from the system you tutor with?

No.  An official diagnosis for dyslexia is not necessary. Dyslexia is the most common reason a person will struggle with reading and spelling. No other learning disability parallel the symptoms of dyslexia. If dyslexia is suspected, it most likely is.

This office will be certified in diagnosing dyslexia in 2011.

However, diagnostic testing will help you better understand your child, and will guide you in making better educational decisions.  Testing will give you a map of your child's strong and weak points.

In order to qualify for some government programs, an official diagnosis may be required.

Public schools however, only 'classify' students with a general 'learning disability'. They do not officially diagnose.

Just like when your child gets an injury.  The school nurse will evaluate the injury, treat it with a band aide and recommend scheduling a visit with your physician should the problem persist. 

Since reasonable accommodations are required by law, the school may supply crutches and give the injured student extra time to get from one class to the next, but the true underlying condition will not be treated in public schools. Learning disabilities, like dyslexia, are treated the same way.  The underlying condition of the learning disability is up the parent and outside professionals to address.


Do you do in-home tutoring and travel to each student's residence?

Special accommodations are arranged on a case-by-case basis.  Most tutoring sessions are held at either of the Monmouth County Public Libraries or one of our offices in Freehold or Red Bank.

 


Does medical insurance cover these tutoring sessions?

No.  Dyslexia is not classified as a medical condition.


Related Conditions with dyslexia

It is common for children with dyslexia to be additionally diagnosed with any of the following:

  • ADD or ADHD
    (Attention Deficit Disorder or Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder)

    up to 40% of people with dyslexia have AD/HD as a
    co-existing condition

  • APD / CAPD
    (Central Auditory Processing Disorder)
    A condition that affects the ability to process auditory information. Auditory processing disorder is a listening disability.  

    It's a complex problem affecting about 5% of school-aged children. 

    These students can't process the information they hear in the same way as others because their ears and brain don't fully coordinate. Something adversely affects the way the brain recognizes and interprets sounds, most notably the sounds composing speech.

  • a visual processing issue is
    also known as "visual perceptual processing disorders" affect how the brain perceives and processes what the eye sees.

The conditions mentioned above are different from dyslexia.  
IF
 reading problems are apparent, then any one of the conditions mentioned above, become a manifestation of dyslexia.  
They are derived from the same underlying language processing problems.
 
If reading struggles are not an issue, then the above condition is independent and NOT classified as dyslexia.

Other conditions that can co-exist with dyslexia include:

  • Dysgraphia
    (Difficulty with writing)

  • Dyscalculia
    (learning disability with math)

  • Dyspraxia
    (Difficulty with sensory/motor tasks.  Also called 'clumsy child syndrome')

  • Auditory Discrimination Problem

  • Auditory Processing Disorder

  • Central Auditory Processing Disorder (CAPD)

  • Orthographic Deficit (severe spelling difficulties)

  • Difficulty remembering spelling patterns

  • Dysnomia

  • Dysphonetic Deficit

  • Phonemic Awareness Deficit

  • Reading Disability (RD)

  • Reading Fluency Problem

  • Short-term or Long-term Memory Deficit

  • Specific Language Disability (SLD)

  • Visual Processing Disorder

  • Visual-Motor Integration Disorder

  • Visual Memory Deficit

  • Visual Tracking Problem

  • Visual Convergence Problem

  • Vocabulary on Demand Problem

  • Word Retrieval Deficit

  • Written Language Disorder


Programs

What is the 504 Plan?

Video link:

http://www.ncld.org/learning-disability-resources/videos/video-what-is-a-504-plan

www.ncld.org

It is not the same as an IEP.  A 504 can follow a student to college and IEP can not.

The 504 Plan is a government law that requires classroom accommodations for students with disabilities.  The objective is to ensure all students get an equal chance at a public education, regardless of disability.

You will want to speak with your local school as to how they implement this plan.

More information about the 504 plan is below:

http://ed.gov/about/offices/list/ocr/504faq.html

 


What is the ADA?


The ADA prohibits employment discrimination against qualified individuals with disabilities.

More information on the ADA below:

AMERICANS WITH DISABILITIES ACT (ADA)


A qualified individual with a disability is someone who meets the requirements of the job. That means you first must have the minimum requirements (MQs) which include items such as skills, experience, education and other job related requirements (such as licenses, certificates or specific abilities)... and then it goes further to say... AND who with or without reasonable accommodations, can perform the essential functions of that position. ADA protects the disabled person as it relates to ANY employment practice, term, condition or privilege of employment. Most employers (with 15 employees or more) must make a reasonable accommodation to the known physical or mental limitations of a qualified applicant or employee with a disability unless it can show that the accommodation would cause an undue hardship on the operation of its business.


What is RTI?

RTI stands for Response to Intervention  It's an assessment tool aimed at early identification of children with learning issues.

In order for RTI to be successful, all students must receive high-quality, research-based instruction in the general education environment. 


What is IEP?

IEP is an Individualized Education Program that's mandated by the Individuals with Disabilities Education Act(IDEA). It requires public schools to develop an IEP for every student with a disability who is found to meet the federal and state requirements.

It's designed to provide a child with a Free Appropriate Public Education (FAPE).


No Child Left Behind Act

NCLB is the latest federal legislation that enacts the theories of standards-based education reform, which is based on the belief that setting high standards and establishing measurable goals can improve individual outcomes in education.

The act requires 100% of students (including disadvantaged and special education students) within a school to reach the same state standards in reading and mathematics by 2014.

This act promotes more testing and tougher tests in raising the universal standard.


The Truth About Dyslexia - by: Ben Foss

What is dyslexia?

Dyslexia (or specific reading disability) is a language-based learning disability characterized by a difficulty in reading in people who otherwise possess the intelligence and motivation considered necessary for accurate and fluent reading. In practical terms, dyslexia means we are smart, but we read slowly.

What is a learning disability?

A learning disability is a neurological disorder. In practical terms, our brains are structured differently. It is important to note that people with learning disabilities are of average to above average intelligence. However, they may have difficulty reading, writing and spelling.

Learning disabilities should never be confused with other disabilities such as the following:

  • A congenital malformation of brain or other physical impairments
  • Mental retardation or other disabilities characterized by significant limitations in intelligence
  • Autism or other developmental disorders
  • Blindness or other visual impairments
  • Attention Deficit/Hyperactivity Disorder (ADHD) or other behavioral disabilities

In addition, learning disabilities should not be confused with lack of educational opportunities such as:

  • Frequent changes of schools
  • Attendance problems
  • An illness
  • Learning English as a second language

Is dyslexia a learning disability?

Yes, it is classified as a learning disability but it's more accurately a reading disability. In fact, as many as 80% of all individuals identified as learning disabled are dyslexic. Because dyslexia is so common in the learning disabled population, it is the most studied specific learning disability.

In addition to dyslexia, other learning disabilities include:

  • Dyscalculia, a mathematical disability in which a person has a difficult time solving math problems and grasping math concepts.
  • Dysgraphia, a writing disability in which a person finds it hard to form letters or write within a defined space.
  • Auditory and Visual Processing Disorders, a group of sensory disabilities in which a person has difficulty understanding language despite normal hearing and vision.
  • Nonverbal Learning Disabilities, a neurological disorder, which originates in the right hemisphere of the brain, causing problems with visual-spatial, intuitive, organizational, evaluative and holistic processing functions.

How common is dyslexia?

15% of the U.S. population, or one in seven Americans, has some type of learning disability, according to the National Institutes of Health.

Can you grow out of being dyslexia?

No. Some people think of school-aged children when they think of dyslexia. But, dyslexic kids grow up to be dyslexic adults. Where our parents and teachers may have helped us when we were children, now we need to help ourselves.

How do I deal with being dyslexic?

First of all, accept it. As we accept that using a wheel chair or being blind is part of a person’s life, being dyslexic is a part of our lives. No less than being a man or woman, or being black, brown, white or yellow –- dyslexia is a part of us.

With the right tools and support dyslexic people can succeed in school and move on to happy, successful and often distinguished lives.

Where does dyslexia come from?

Dyslexia is a brain-based, genetic trait. We inherited dyslexia and it will likely travel to some of our children.

Research supported by the National Institute of Child Health and Human Development suggests that dyslexia affects the temporal parietal lobe.

Brain activity while reading of a non-dyslexic person (left) and dyslexic person (right)

To the right are two brains. These two brains are reading. The image on the left is the brain of someone who is not dyslexic. The image on the right is the brain of Headstrong’s president and founder, Ben Foss (who is dyslexic). Note how the brain on the left shows more red and yellow stuff than Ben’s brain? That stuff is activity. The other brain shows more activity while reading as compared to Ben’s brain.

How does being dyslexic affect me?

It means your brain is working harder to do the same amount of work than people who are not dyslexic. When you read, your posterior brain regions are relatively under active while your anterior brain regions are relatively overactive.

Again, in practical terms, it means we read slowly. But the impact that dyslexia has on our lives is much greater. When people of average or above average intelligence have a hard time reading, they often feel ashamed. The shame surrounding learning disabilities is deeply rooted: nearly half of parents would rather their child suffer with an undiagnosed learning disability than live with the stigma of having a learning disability.

Just to get this straight, almost half of parents would rather their children—who are of average or above average intelligence—silently struggle with their learning disability in order to avoid a stigma. A stigma that exists only because learning disabilities have been misunderstood and mistreated. The misunderstanding begins when many people can’t figure out why an intelligent person can’t read at their expected level. The mistreating begins when dyslexic students are simply encouraged to ‘try harder’.

In our nationally broadcast documentary, Headstrong: Inside the Hidden World of Dyslexia and Attention Deficit Disorder, a young student tells Ben Foss that he is going to ‘try harder’. Ben replied, “When you say to me you are going to try harder, I am going to focus more, that sounds to me like you’re a person in a wheel chair saying ‘I am going to go up these stairs by trying harder and focusing more’. And instead, I think you need to learn to talk to people and say, I need a ramp!” In other words, we need to use the tools and accommodations that are available to us to help us succeed.

What does dyslexia mean for society?

The social impacts of dyslexia and other specific learning disabilities are huge.

  • The dropout rate for students with learning disabilities is 35%—twice the national average.
  • Less than two percent of people with learning disabilities get a four-year college degree.
  • Over 30% of all welfare recipients are estimated to be learning disabled.
  • Over 40% of prisoners are estimated to be learning disabled.

The figures above illustrate how learning disabilities are impacting our society—not just those directly affected, not just parents trying to help their kids, not just teachers trying to get children through the school system. As a society, learning disabilities come at a cost to all of us.

What can I do about being dyslexic?

  • Learn—We need to empower ourselves with knowledge about dyslexia through audio books and films. You’ve already made the right move in starting this process.
  • Act—We need to understand our rights; demand the accommodations we deserve from our schools and employers. We need to equip ourselves with the best tools to be independent.
  • Connect—We need to connect with other people who are dealing with the same issues as we are. Share your experiences, both successes and failures. By doing so, we can help the millions of other people like us.

 


Rates and Scheduling

Each session is 45 minutes.

A minimum of 2 sessions per week
is recommended.

The child most likely to benefit from our style of one-on-one tutoring, often spends hours studying for Friday's spelling test, yet cannot retain those spelling words from one week to the next.

They cannot spell when writing sentences and stories, not even those high frequency words like: because, friend, and does. They will even misspell the same word, differently within the same paragraph.

When they write, they just can't seem to remember that a sentence has to start with a capital letter, and there has to be punctuation.

Even though the child CAN read, they have great difficulty sounding out an unknown word, despite being taught phonics.

They have enormous difficulty memorizing things like their address and phone number as well as their math facts, multiplication tables and have trouble with long division.  They often have a very odd pencil grip and poor penmanship and even find tying their shoes challenging.

That's the type of student we specialize in and they are likely to be dyslexic. 

Each session is 45 minutes and is 85 dollars per session.  Contact us for options on discounted rates!

If your child is only struggling with reading comprehension, then you don't need our specialized services.  Virtually any reading tutor and even commercial learning centers will be able to assist you. 

Tutoring sessions are held at the following offices:

  • Shrewsbury, New Jersey 
  • Manalapan, New Jersey 

Arrangements can be made for in home tutoring.

JenSlaight@gmail.com

(732) 882-9695

Dyslexia and reading

FAQ Links:

Learning Centers

Is diagnosing necessary?

Do you do in-home tutoring and travel to each students residence?

Medical Insurance


Related Conditions

  • ADD / ADHD

  • APD / CAPD

  • Visual processing issues


Programs - Gov.


The Truth
About Dyslexia

  • What is it?

  • How do you deal with it?

  • Where does it come from?

  • What does it mean?

  • What can I do now?


Tutoring rates