Individualized Tutoring

Tutoring is ideal for individuals needed one-on-one and specialized tutoring. The Learning Academy’s tutors are trained and supervised in programs that help learners of all ages acquire academic skills necessary for success. These internationally recognized programs produce consistent proven results.

Programs We Use

Barton Reading & Spelling System®

The Barton Reading & Spelling System® is a highly structured one-on-one approach that greatly improves the spelling, reading, and writing skills of children, teenagers or adults who struggle due to dyslexia or a learning disability. Our tutors have been thoroughly trained in this system.

Dyslexia covers a broad range of learning disabilities. Language processing is a subtle and often undiagnosed disability. Parents can be confused and apprehensive when these terms are used. The Barton system offers hope and clears away much of the mystery by using the proven Orton-Gillingham Multisensory Method to help our students read and spell to their true potentials.

The Orton-Gillingham Multisensory Method was developed in the early 1930′s by Anna Gillingham and a group of master teachers. Dr. Samuel Orton assigned Anna’s group the task of designing a whole new way of teaching the phonemic structure of our written language to people with dyslexia.

The goal was to create a sequential system that builds on itself in an almost 3-dimensional way. It must show how sounds and letters are related and how they act in words; it must also show how to attack a word and break it into smaller pieces. And it must be a multi-sensory approach, as dyslexic people learn best by involving all of their senses: visual, auditory, tactile, and kinesthetic.

What is Taught

  1. Phonemic Awareness is the first step. You must teach someone how to listen to a single word or syllable and break it into individual phonemes. They also have to be able to take individual sounds and blend them into a word, change sounds, delete sounds, and compare sounds—all in their head. These skills are easiest to learn before someone brings in printed letters.
  2. Phoneme/Grapheme Correspondence is the next step. Here you teach which sounds are represented by which letter(s), and how to blend those letters into single-syllable words.
  3. The Six Types of Syllables that compose English words are taught next. If students know what type of syllable they’re looking at, they’ll know what sound the vowel will make. Conversely, when they hear a vowel sound, they’ll know how the syllable must be spelled to make that sound.
  4. Probabilities and Rules are then taught. The English language provides several ways to spell the same sounds. For example, the sound /SHUN/ can be spelled either TION, SION, or CIAN. The sound of /J/ at the end of a word can be spelled GE or DGE. Dyslexic students need to be taught these rules and probabilities.
  5. Roots and Affixes, as well as Morphology are then taught to expand a student’s vocabulary and ability to comprehend (and spell) unfamiliar words. For instance, once a student has been taught that the Latin root TRACT means pull, and a student knows the various Latin affixes, the student can figure out that retract means pull again, contract means pull together, subtract means pull away (or pull under), while tractor means a machine that pulls.

How it is Taught

  • Simultaneous Multisensory Instruction: Research has shown that dyslexic people who use all of their senses when they learn (visual, auditory, tactile, and kinesthetic) are better able to store and retrieve the information. So a beginning dyslexic student might see the letter A, say its name and sound, and write it in the air—all at the same time.
  • Intense Instruction with Ample Practice: Instruction for dyslexic students must be much more intense, and offer much more practice, than for regular readers.
  • Direct, Explicit Instruction: Dyslexic students do not intuit anything about written language. So, you must teach them, directly and explicitly, each and every rule that governs our written words. And you must teach one rule at a time, and practice it until it is stable in both reading and spelling, before introducing a new rule.
  • Systematic and Cumulative: By the time most dyslexic students are identified, they are usually quite confused about our written language. So you must go back to the very beginning and create a solid foundation with no holes. You must teach the logic behind our language by presenting one rule at a time and practicing it until the student can automatically and fluently apply that rule both when reading and spelling. You must continue to weave previously learned rules into current lessons to keep them fresh and solid. The system must make logical sense to our students, from the first lesson through the last one.
  • Synthetic and Analytic: Dyslexic students must be taught both how to take the individual letters or sounds and put them together to form a word (synthetic), as well as how to look at a long word and break it into smaller pieces (analytic). Both synthetic and analytic phonics must be taught all the time.
  • Diagnostic Teaching: The teacher must continuously assess their student’s understanding of, and ability to apply, the rules. The teacher must ensure the student isn’t simply recognizing a pattern and blindly applying it. And when confusion of a previously-taught rule is discovered, it must be retaught.


Just as letters are the building blocks of reading, numbers are the building blocks of mathematics, and both are a form of communication.

Our approach uses the Math-U-See® multi-sensory program to help children learn math facts, rules, and formulas…as well as better apply this knowledge in solving word problems and real life tasks. A structured system and individual attention boost confidence and performance.

Visualizing & Verbalizing®

The Visualizing and Verbalizing® program develops concept imagery—the ability to create an imagined or imaged gestalt from language—as a basis for comprehension and higher order thinking. The development of concept imagery improves reading and listening comprehension, memory, oral vocabulary, critical thinking, and writing.

Individuals of all ages may experience the symptoms of a weakness in concept imagery, which may cause weakness in:

  • Reading comprehension
  • Listening comprehension
  • Critical thinking and problem solving
  • Following directions
  • Memory
  • Oral language expression
  • Written language expression
  • Grasping humor
  • Interpreting social situations
  • Understanding cause and effect

On Cloud Nine Math®

The On Cloud Nine® Math Program stimulates the ability to image and verbalize the concepts underlying math processes. Concept and numerical imagery are integrated with language and applied to math computation and problem solving. There is emphasis on both mathematical reasoning and mathematical computation. Individuals of all ages learn to do and enjoy math.

Individuals of all ages may experience an inability to image the concepts underlying math processes. This may cause weakness in:

  • Learning math family facts
  • Grasping mathematical relationships
  • Following proper mathematical operations
  • Solving word problems
  • Estimating numerical values
  • Understanding higher level math

Handwriting Without Tears®

The Handwriting Without Tears® curriculum draws from years of innovation and research to provide developmentally appropriate, multisensory tools and strategies for your classroom. The program follows research that demonstrates children learn more effectively by actively doing, with materials that address all styles of learning.

Social Skills

  • Taking turns
  • Using quiet voices
  • Listening to directions
  • Maintaining polite conversations
  • Asking for help…

The list of co-operative, pro-social behaviors is a long one. Frequently over-looked, they can lead to life-long social isolation.

Many children are unaware of how their behavior in class contributes to or inhibits learning. Fortunately, classroom behavior and social skills can be taught just like academic skills.

Through carefully monitored group work that strengthens self-awareness your child can learn to be a productive student and a better friend.

Once learned the cues and language of graceful behavior carry the learning forward. Co-operative habits are life long, as are good study habits.

Center For Communication Skills, Speech & Language Pathologists, Fresno, CA