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Reading and the Squid

Personalized Reading and Writing Instruction

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Dyslexia Screening Available! Contact me to learn more!

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Reading and the Squid...What does that even mean?

I'm glad you asked

Maryanne Wolf, a professor of child development at Tufts University and the director of the Center for Reading and Language Research wrote a book titled "Proust and the Squid: The Story and Science of the Reading Brain."  In her book she shares the following:

"Scientists in the 1950's used the long central axon of the shy but cunning squid to understand how neurons fire and transmit to each other, and in some cases to how neurons repair and compensate when something goes awry. 

The study of what the human brain has to do to read , and of its clever ways of adapting when things go wrong, is analogous to the study of the squid in earlier neuroscience."

Children struggling to read do not subscribe to a "one-size-fits-all approach." One of their many strengths lie in how their brain ADAPTS when print does not makes sense, and how best we utilitze strengths to support those challenges with learning to read. 

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About Me

Susan Gotshall, M.Ed, C-SLCT

Looking for assistance for your struggling reader who needs some one-on-one guidance from a reliable professional? Sometimes all it takes is an instructor who knows the best methods for your individual child.  Having worked as a reading specialist since 2013, I bring a depth of professional experience and knowledge to working with children who struggle with reading and writing  by offering supports to address challenges as well capitalizing on their strengths.  I offer quality, personalized service. Contact me to see how I can support your child!

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Lessons and Specialties

Promising Personalized Guidance Every Step of the Way

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One-on-One and Group Sessions

I specialize in reading and writing intervention strategies with an emphasis on a multi-sensory approach. I work with children diagnosed with dyslexia, showing risk factors for dyselxia and those struggling along the reading/writing acquisition continuum. I can identify your child's challenge areas and work with them in positive, constructive ways to achieve success. I design my lessons according to my students’ needs, with an emphasis on confidence-boosting activities.

Dyslexia Screening and Diagnostic

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I utilize the Phonological Awareness Screening Test (PAST), Orton Gillingham Informal Coding Assessment and NeuroLearning Dyslexia Screening Tool to help guide me in creating the perfect tutoring plan for your child. These assessment are used to investigate deficits and to explore risk factors for dyslexia. 

Dyslexia concept, word spelled out in wo

If you suspect that your child may be dyslexic here are some points to consider:

  • Dyslexia is hereditary​​

  • However, the degree can differ among family members​

  • Has difficulty decoding single words (reading single words in isolation)

  • May be slow to learn the connection between letters and sounds

  • May confuse small words – at/to, said/and, does/goes

  • Makes consistent reading and spelling errors including:

  • Letter reversals – d for b as in, dog for bog beyond 2nd grade.

  • Word reversals – tip for pit

  • Inversions – m and w, u and n

  • Transpositions – felt and left

  • Substitutions – house and home

  • May transpose number sequences and confuse arithmetic signs (+ - x / =)

  • May have trouble remembering facts

  • May be slow to learn new skills; relies heavily on memorizing without understanding

  • May have difficulty planning

  • Often uses an awkward pencil grip (fist, thumb hooked over fingers, etc. 

  • May have trouble learning to tell time

  • May have poor fine motor coordination

More about Dyslexia

While I CAN screen for risk factors of dyslexia I am not qualified to formally diagnose. In most cases, testing for dyslexia  is done by a licensed educational psychologist. Neurologists and other medical professionals may also be qualified to provide a formal diagnosis. 

A formal diagnosis is not needed in order to get appropriate dyslexia tutoring for your child. All of the strategies I use benefit ALL learners, regardless of whether or not they are dyslexic. I use the Orton Gillingham Approach and Foundations of Sound  to conduct my tutoring sessions.

About Dyslexia

Colorful dyslexia word.jpg

 I started my career in education in 2000.  I have a Bachelor of Arts in Elementary Education with a focus upon Reading Intervention. I also have a Master of Education in Administrative Leadership.
I am an International Dyslexia Association certified Structured Literacy Teacher and trained in the Orton Gillingham Approach. I am also certified in Dyslexia Studies as well as Trauma Informed Education. 

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Susan Gotshall, M.Ed, C-SLCT

Bend and Redmond Oregon


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