Dyslexia is a learning disorder that affects a person’s ability to read, write, and spell. Standard tutoring for dyslexia typically involves a multisensory approach that uses visual, auditory, and kinesthetic methods to help individuals with dyslexia learn and retain information. Read on to learn about dyslexia tutoring techniques.


“Dyslexia is a specific learning disability that is neurobiological in origin. It is characterized by difficulties with accurate and/or fluent word recognition and by poor spelling and decoding abilities. These difficulties typically result from a deficit in the phonological component of language that is often unexpected in relation to other cognitive abilities and the provision of effective classroom instruction. Secondary consequences may include problems in reading comprehension and reduced reading experience that can impede growth of vocabulary and background knowledge.”

International Dyslexia Association



Tutoring for dyslexia typically involves a structured approach that depends on the age and specific needs of an individual. Some common techniques used in tutoring for dyslexia include things such as phonics instruction, multisensory instruction, reading fluency practice, and reading comprehension strategies.


Phonics instruction teaches students how to decode words by breaking them down into smaller parts, so individual sounds can be heard more easily. This helps them with their phonemic awareness through activities like segmenting words into component sounds, blending sounds together to form words, and manipulating sounds within words. Phonics instruction helps dyslexic students understand words through the identification of their component sounds, so they can improve their reading accuracy and fluency.


Multisensory instruction is an approach that involves applying multiple senses to the learning process. Dyslexia tutoring often involves activities that engage multiple senses to understand words from different perspectives. For example, young students with dyslexia may use manipulatives to build words or use their fingers to trace letters and words on paper or “write” letters and words in sand or shaving cream while saying them aloud.


Reading fluency practice also can be useful to dyslexic students. The kinds of exercises that are used to practice reading fluency generally focus on building reading speed and accuracy. Fluency practice is often combined with phonics instruction.


Dyslexia tutoring sessions also may include instruction on specific reading comprehension strategies. Reading comprehension can be difficult for students who have to use most of their energy to decode the words they are reading; strategies such as summarizing, making predictions, and asking questions can help significantly because they all contribute to contextual learning that helps with the overall comprehension of stories and concepts.


It is important to note that each individual with dyslexia is unique, and the specific approach or combination of approaches used will depend on the needs of each student. Monitoring student progress and making regular assessments can help tutors track an individual student’s growth. This way, tutors can identify gaps in learning and gain an understanding of what techniques work best for each student; and they can adjust their approach as needed.

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