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Dyslexia Therapy Reimagined

Barbara T Conway

Location: New Ulm, Texas

Education: Ph.D Curriculum and Instruction, emphasis in reading; certified Academic Language Therapist (CALT); Structured Literact Dyslexia Specialist (SLDS)

Years Experience Teaching: 20

Years Experience In Dyslexia: 13

Teaching Experience

Hogg Middle School, Houston, TX, Special Education, reading

Key Middle School, Houston, TX, Remedial Reading

Houston Community College, Houston, TX, Adult Literacy

Fort Bend Christian, Sugarland, TX, Reading and Learning Disabilities Therapist

Barrington Place Elementary, Sugarland, TX, Special Education Reading and Dyslexia Therapy

Neuhaus Education Center, Houston, TX, Vice President of Innovative Solutions, Dyslexia therapy training of teachers, Class instruction of reading teachers

Houston Baptist University, Adjunct Professor, Reading

Professional Affiliations

Academic Language Therapy Association

International Dyslexia Association

Programs Trained In

NILD therapy for reading and learning disabilities

Basic Language Skills theraly for dyslexia

Age Range You Feel Most Comfortable With:
Elementary through adult

Why did you decide to become a CALT?

In my position as a special education teacher I taught reading most of the time. I wasn’t seeing the success I wanted to in my students and hated to see them discouraged and defeated. When I had dyslexia training under my belt, I began to see my students grow and become readers. They felt greater self-confidence and I finally felt equipped to help them. Teaching teachers about dyslexia has been just as gratifying because I see them developing the same feeling of empowerment as teachers that I did. Now in my retirement years I have gone back to teaching students and watching them blossom and grow.

Favorite moment working with dyslexic students?

I have favorite moments with each of my students, but one young very discouraged fourth grade student, after being in therapy for about 5 months ran to his general class teacher one day, said, “Listen, I can read this!” and read to her. The teacher and I both had tears in our eyes.

Your goal when working with kids with dyslexia?

My initial desire is for my students to feel relaxed and comfortable with me and with the journey we’re starting together. I want them to feel that it is ok to make mistakes and take risks so that they can learn. Then I watch and pace my therapy with them till I begin to see a turn. I’m looking for that time when word structure and patterns become clearer to them and they begin to self correct, read more fluently, and begin a little bit of “self-teaching.” This is when self-efficacy, the “I can do it!” attitude begins to blossom.

Your teaching style, personality?

I enjoy the students and each of their unique perspectives, so Iove hearing how they think, their take on a story we’ve just read, for example. I stay organized so that we move from one activity to the next in a relaxed fashion and still have a full lesson encompassing decoding, vocabulary and listening comprehension. I like playing at least one game, so my students can have fun, but also have a sense of success each lesson. My goal in planning lessons is to keep growth always continual.

Any family details?

I live with my husband of 47 years and our crazy but faithful dog. I have three wonderful adult children and three adorable grandchildren.

Any extra anecdotal info you want to add?

My teaching philosophy is simple:
Everyone learns

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