Melissa Young is an educator and parent from Sparta, New Jersey. After ten years as a stay-at-home mom to daughter Sonya “Sunny” and son Drew, Melissa decided to apply for the IMSE Orton-Gillingham Level 1 Comprehensive Certification to expand her skills in reading instruction.
“I found out about Orton-Gillingham through my sister-in-law, because my niece is going through a program. I looked into [IMSE’s training] and learned more about it. I thought it would be really interesting, considering I’ve really shown a big interest in teaching children how to read,” Melissa tells the Journal.
Melissa has a masters in teaching from the University of Pittsburgh and taught second grade. She is also the founder of Play Together, Read Together, which offers reading games and books aimed at making phonics and sight reading fun for young readers. Through her program, Melissa also offers small group instruction for children at the Sparta rec center. http://www.playtogetherreadtogether.com/
After completing the 30 Hour Comprehensive training last spring, she chose to complete her certification with the 45 Hour Practicum. She conducted these lessons with her seven year-old daughter, Sunny, and filmed many of them for her IMSE Practicum Supervisor to observe and comment on.
It really works! Sunny just loved every moment of it. There was very little complaining about starting a new lesson. And for a seven year-old…that speaks for itself.
In the process, Melissa and Sunny discovered the power of IMSE’s Orton-Gillingham curriculum. “Reading has always been a little bit of a struggle for her…she’s on grade level, but she’s not quite where I thought she would be. I’m really glad I had the chance to tutor her, because without me doing this, I really worry about where she would have been,” Melissa says.
And Melissa’s knowledge has also been helpful in reinforcing her daughter’s Orton-Gillingham training at school. “The next step for her is Bossy ‘R,’ so, I think we’ll try to do that one together,” Melissa says.
The biggest discovery for Melissa during her journey with IMSE? The power of multi-sensory instruction. “It really works! Sunny just loved every moment of it. There was very little complaining about starting a new lesson. And for a seven year-old…that speaks for itself.”