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Orton-Gillingham Basics

• The more senses involved, the more memory traces are formed,
the more rapid the training.
• Instruction employs all receptive and expressive modalities and
makes strong connections between these modalities.
• When a student performs actions correctly, the memory traces
for these actions will also be correct.

Sensory feedback
• OG used feedback to ensure accurate student performance.
• Accurate performance = accurate memory traces
• Inaccurate performance = inaccurate memory traces

Principle of Least Effort

– When we produce sounds, we tend toward the most natural, or
effortless pronunciations. Words can be contracted, shortened or
compressed because users tend to adopt linguistic or articulatory

• The inability to make correct sound-symbol associations may

lead to later difficulties in learning to read.

Phonemic Awareness
• The ability to identify, sequence and manipulate individual
sounds (phonemes)
• The most important predictor of success in learning to read and
Levels of phonemic awareness (Adams, 1990)
• To hear rhymes and alliteration as measured by nursery rhymes
• To do oddity tasks (comparing rhyme and alliteration)
• To blend and split syllables
• To perform phonemic segmentation
• To perform phoneme manipulation tasks

• In order to decode and spell, students with weak visual memory

must rely on cues that are auditory and cognitive.

Phonemic awareness
• Onset - initial consonant of a word or syllable
• Rime - everything after the initial consonant

Phonemic awareness activities

• Phonemic deletion - What word would be left if the /k/ sound
were taken away from cat?
• Word to word matching: Do pen and pipe begin with the same
• Blending: What word would we have when we have if we put
these sounds together /s/, /a/, /t/
• Sound isolation: what is the first sound in rose?
• Phoneme segmentation: What sounds do you hear in the word
• Phoneme counting: How many sounds do you hear in the word
• Deleted phoneme: What sound do you hear in meat that is
missing in eat?
• Odd word out: What word starts with a different sound: bag,
nine. beach, or bike?
• Sound to word matching: Is there a /k/ in bike?

Word attack skills: Initial Stage

• SOS - simultaneous oral spelling
1 sound - 1 spelling
1 sound - 2 spellings
1 sound - 3 spellings

Points to Remember
• As students progress in their understanding of symbol to sound
correspondences and word patterns and structure, the amount of time
spent on basic phonics shifts increasingly toward advanced levels of
word analysis.

• Students shift from sound symbol associations to thinking about

prefixes, suffixes, and the meaningful units of language (morphemes).

• Vocabulary development increases as students learn about the

influence of word origin (e.g. Greek, Latin, and Anglo-Saxon) on
pronunciation, meaning and spelling.
Intermediate Stage
Syllables and Morphemes

Advanced Stage

OG Lesson Plan
• Review of letters (phonograms) and sounds (phonemes) already
learned (visual to auditory and kinesthetic senses)
• Introduction of new phonogram and its sound (visual to auditory
and kinesthetic)

• Lists of individual words for reading aloud, carefully selected to

review the previously learned phonograms and phonemes and to
reinforce the new one (s) (visual to auditory and kinesthetic)

• Dictation of new and previously learned sounds (auditory to

kinesthetic and visual).

• Dictation of words containing only those phonograms and

phonemes previously learned (auditory to kinesthetic and visual)

• Dictation of sentences using words made up of phonograms and

phonemes already taught (auditory to kinesthetic and visual)

• Reading aloud from a text that contains only elements the

student has mastered, so that he or she will not have to guess. (visual
to auditory and kinesthetic)

Visual Drill
• Say the letter, key word, sound
• Ex. m - man - m

Auditory Drill
• Show the picture of a bag.
• “What is in the picture?”
• “The first sound of bag is”
• Sound as you write
• “The last sound of bag is”
• “What is the middle sound of bag?”
• Can you sound as you write?