I was a struggling learner. I know what it is like to try so hard, spend hours studying just to fail the test (again). I spent hours trying to memorize everything as I have a great visual memory, but eventually this did not work as a strategy either. I now know that our minds fill up when there is no strategy taught to implement, for those that learn differently. I felt like there was something wrong with me, but yet if it was in the crafts or arts area, I could just watch someone do it or get a book with step-by-step pictures and be able to do the craft all on my own.
I did figure out a system that helped me through college; my goal was to help students like myself. I taught at a private school for 8 years and then my son started struggling as well with reading and writing. I decided that I would homeschool him. I learned everything I could about how to teach those that learn differently. My son had tracking and converging eye issues. I learned about visual therapy and how to do activities to help his eyes to track and converge together. During this time, I discovered that my eyes did not work together, and I needed to be doing the same activities.
Later, when I was researching and learning about dyslexia, dysgraphia, and dyscalculia it became apparent that I and most my siblings had different degrees of these disorders. My son also has dyslexia as well as 2 of his children. I have spent many years researching and learning about this neurological disorder and how to help students with it and as well as students with ADD/ADHD since dyslexia and ADD/ADHD can go hand-in-hand. (My son, his 2 children and I also have ADD/ADHD.)
I have been trained in original Orton-Gillingham, Susan Barton, Wilson, Institute for Multi-Sensory Education (IMSE), Zoo Phonics for younger children, SPIRE (Specialized Program Individualizing Reading Excellence), Reading Improvement Strategies by Jerry L. Johns, The Alphabet Series for young readers, Ways to Help Struggling Readers by Nita Sundbye and Linda Jones McCoy as well as other programs. I also have extensive training and years of implementing a motor program (Perceptual Motor Development) that helps the student develop many skills that can lead to better processing.
I do not believe that one method or strategy works for every struggling student, so for those that are not "one method fits all" type of student, I use combinations of programs out there as well as strategies and activities that I have created. The last 16 years I have worked only with struggling students. I have taught for 27 years. The students that I work with meet in a small group of no more than 4 students for either 2, 3, or 4 hours per week. We do hands-on activities, games, practiced instruction, group discussion, and brain development activities.