Research has shown that 80% of all normal children learn to read by any method of teaching. However, the remaining 20% who are physically and intellectually normal, but who have difficulty in auditory, visual, and/or kinesthetic recognition or memory, must learn language skills through logically structured, multisensory presentations.
In private practice, Gina Underwood works with these 20% who struggle with reading, writing, and spelling. After spending countless hours helping hundreds of failing students, Gina knows that employing all the senses is integral in developing a life-long love of learning. Reversing the spiraling downward trend of low self-esteem due to repeated learning failures is possible through multisensory learning. Gina knows that every person can succeed with the right tools and curriculum that engages the senses.
She graduated with a Masters of Education in Dyslexia Therapy from Mississippi College. In her Masters program, she provided dyslexia therapy using the Alphabetic Phonics curriculum to students for over 1,000 clinical hours. She is a Licensed Dyslexia Therapist (LDT) with the state of Texas and a Certified Academic Language Therapist (CALT) with Academic Language Therapy Association (ALTA).
Gina is a Dyslexia Practitioner, certified by the International Dyslexia Association. She is a Structured Language/Dyslexia Interventionist with Center for Effective Reading Instruction. Formerly, she was a Spalding Certified Teacher, certified by Spalding Education International. She holds a Bachelor’s of Science degree in the College of Education from the University of Texas at Austin.
Licensed Dyslexia Therapist, TX
Certified Academic Language Therapist, ALTA
Dyslexia Practitioner, IDA
Structured Literacy/Dyslexia Interventionist, CERI
Alphabetic Phonics was developed by Dr. Lucius Waite and Aylett Cox in the Language Laboratory, Neurology Division, in the interdisciplinary setting of the Scottish Rite Hospital in Dallas, Texas over ten years (1965-1975). Experts in the departments of neurology, education, linguistics, psychology, sociology, research and evaluation, and in physical, occupational, and speech therapy contributed expert guidance for the compilation of structured techniques for multisensory teaching of language skills. The Language Research and Training Laboratory developed Alphabetic Phonics through organizing, structuring, and extending the Orton-Gillingham approach to remedial language training.
Alphabetic Phonics provides direct, explicit, and sequenced instruction. Teaching sequentially means that students learn language concepts in a logical order, from the simplest to the more complex. The ascending levels of complexity allow students to experience success while developing proficiency.
The curriculum is systematic, cumulative, and intensive. Systematic lessons adhere to a fixed plan or method and are easily depended on by the student. Each new piece of information is carefully and successively added over time and reinforced by practice and review.
Therapy sessions include these lesson components: alphabet/dictionary skills, phonics, reading, spelling, handwriting, phonological awareness, listening comprehension, phonemic awareness, fluency, oral and written expression, reading comprehension, and vocabulary skills. There is a validated reason for everything included in each lesson.
These Orton-Gillingham based teaching methods are integral to the Alphabetic Phonics instructional program:
Recently, other programs have been created from Alphabetic Phonics, such as Take Flight and Reading By Design, which are abridged, condensed versions of Alphabetic Phonics.
Alphabetic Phonics is a therapy-level program—not simply tutoring—therefore, prolonged time is needed with each student. In order for the therapy to be effective, the student needs to receive services 3-5 days/week, 1 hour/day, for 2-3 years. Over this period, the student will be taught concepts up to a 7th grade literacy level. This curriculum is designed to supplant the existing Language Arts program for the struggling student.
Alphabetic Phonics is designed for instructing students with dyslexia and weak decoding skills, although it meets the needs of every kind of learner. The ideal student is one who has average to above average intelligence and who has been diagnosed with dyslexia (and maybe ADD/ADHD), but no other special needs. This multisensory language arts curriculum is effective for the student with or without the official dyslexia diagnosis.