Coed, independent, PK3-12th grade school in St. Petersburg, Florida.
Heather Vidal publishes Literacy Resource for Educators
by Raffi Darrow, Ebytes Editor
Reading skills often influence lifelong learning. Children who are struggling with reading despite excellent reading instruction may benefit from working with professionals specifically prepared to teach them.
Heather has shared some of her tested techniques with other educators in a new book, “Teach Reading with Orton-Gillingham: 72 Classroom-Ready Lessons to Help Struggling Readers and Students with Dyslexia Learn to Love Reading.” The book offers research-based suggestions and lesson plans to make reading multisensory and engaging.
When Heather first began her career teaching in a Florida public school third grade classroom, she noticed that some of her students were struggling with reading despite regular reading interventions.
“I started meeting with them after school to work on phonics,” she shared. “I attended an Orton-Gillingham training (a proven system for those with dyslexia). I started using the Orton-Gillingham approach with my students. I saw AMAZING progress and felt compelled to leave the classroom, start a tutoring business, and work with children one-on-one.”
Later, Heather accepted her role as Literacy Specialist at Shorecrest to continue the work and mission she loves. On the side, she and a former colleague collaborated on writing curriculum for students with dyslexia and posting their work on Teachers Pay Teachers, an online resource for educators.
“Our store really took off! A publisher from Ulysses Press (under the Simon and Schuster umbrella) reached out to us and asked us to write a book.”
The timing worked out well for the pair. They were able to write while home during COVID-19 quarantine.
“Working with children who have dyslexia and other learning differences is my passion,” Heather enthused. And now she can share her knowledge with like-minded professional educators.