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Frequently Asked Questions

What are the symptoms of dyslexia?
Briefly, students with dyslexia always struggle with spelling. And while many can read somewhat, they also struggle to easily and accurately decode words. In addition, many are slow readers who fail to meet benchmark standards. 
For a more comprehensive list of symptoms, please read Is It Dyslexia?
Does my child need a diagnosis of dyslexia to start tutoring?
No, but you must strongly suspect dyslexia.

While some parents need or want a screening for a variety of reasons, it is not absolutely necessary before beginning tutoring. But you must educate yourself on dyslexia and strongly suspect it before starting tutoring. Please watch these videos to learn more about dyslexia and whether it might be the cause of your child's learning difficulties.




Can you help with other reading problems, like comprehension?

My services are designed to help students who are dyslexic, or those who struggle to accurately read and spell. If your child has difficulty with ONLY comprehension, for example, but can read and spell with ease, my type of tutoring would not be a good fit.


However, children with dyslexia will typically struggle with reading comprehension until they learn to read accurately and fluently at their grade level. At that point, comprehension usually comes up on its own.



What classroom accommodations may be helpful to my child?

Until dyslexic children are able to read, write, and spell at their grade level, classroom accommodations are essential to help them learn and demonstrate their knowledge. Some examples of accommodations include oral tests, extended time, keyboarding, and taking modified spelling tests.


The Barton System offers spelling tests that correlate to each lesson. Many teachers will accept these spelling words in place of their regular spelling list each week.


For more information about classroom accommodations, read this list or watch this video.

How can I contact you?
I can be reached by phone at (208) 867-6093 or email at
How long does it take to finish all 10 levels of the Barton System?
While individual progress varies, a moderately-dyslexic student who is tutored twice a week year-round will take around 3 years to complete the program. Each student's progress is determined mainly by how often they are tutored and the severity of their dyslexia.
Is tutoring a long-term commitment?
While you may stop tutoring at any time, it's best to consider tutoring a long-term investment. Teaching dyslexic children to accurately read and spell takes a lot of time and effort. Please do not think that a few months of tutoring will quickly solve your child's difficulties. Over time they will make great progress, but it's important to understand that completing the program takes several years.
Should I ask my child read to me every night while they are being tutored?
No. Most children with dyslexia have developed guessing strategies to help them read. These guessing habits are difficult to stop. So until a child has completed Level 4 in the Barton System, please do not allow them to read outloud. That's because until they have completed that level, most text that students encounter will contain words they are unable to decode accurately. If a child is asked to read that text outloud and they don't know how to decode it, they will be forced to guess - and that keeps reinforcing their guessing habit.
However, since every Barton lesson offers many opportunities to read words, phrases, sentences, and stories, I will have lots of decodable text that your child can take home and read aloud.
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