Key Toe By Toe Best Practice
We cannot stress enough how important it is to study Toe By Toe DAILY with struggling readers. This is the foundation stone on which a student’s reading skills can be improved.
A particular problem struggling readers have is connecting the sight of a word to the sound of the word.
Toe By Toe deliberately addresses this. Throughout the book, there is a reinforcement and over-learning built into Toe By Toe. The process of dragging a particular sound and skill back into the consciousness of a student after a gap of at least 24 hours helps to reinforce the ‘pathway’ between sight and sound. Daily sessions provide by far the best results to achieve this.
Now of course, for various reasons, in schools it can be difficult to provide more than 2 or 3 sessions a week for a single student. So if a school can enlist the help of parents to act as Toe By Toe tutors, both at home or when help is not available at school, this will accelerate the learning process. Daily sessions with Toe By Toe will definitely optimise progress, thanks to the reinforcement and over-learning element the system applies.
It is our experience that parents are very much invested in their children’s education. Many parents ‘fight their corner’ with schools and education authorities to ensure their child gets the necessary help (as in this case) to improve their reading.
Because parents are ‘shareholders’ in wanting the best for their children, on discovering Toe By Toe and what it can do to improve their child’s reading, most parents willingly, happily and quickly learn how to deliver the Toe By Toe lessons and methodology to their children.
Now we appreciate, for many a lay person it may be a daunting prospect to assume responsibility for their child’s education in something so specialised as learning how to read. After all, isn’t that the job of the professionals, the teaching profession? And of course, it is! Learning how to read is a fundamental requirement of attending school and learning how to read is a cornerstone of primary school education.
Alas, as is all too evident, there are always bright intelligent kids who don’t conform to a school template and who, for a variety of reasons, struggle to crack ‘this reading thing.’ And many schools fail many children because they are unable to cater for the few.
Fortunately, Toe By Toe can be a parent’s saviour in this situation.
If you can read, you can tutor Toe By Tutor
Quite simply, if you can read, you can tutor Toe By Toe. The book and system within it is written in such a way that any literate person can act as a tutor. As mentioned above, parents naturally try anything to protect, encourage and improve the lives of their children. By extension of that idea, parents are the ideal candidates to take on the role as their child’s Toe By Toe tutor.
If you are a parent, a little intimidated at the idea of home tutoring your child to improve their reading, have more faith in yourself. You can do this! And we don’t abandon you and leave you isolated and alone. On every exercise page the book itself has a very clear ‘Coach’ box instructions. This contains clear simple instructions of how a coach or tutor should deliver and manager each exercise.
In addition to that, we have compiled a series of top quality videos demonstrating how to use the book, for both tutor and student. Access them here:
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Here is another collection of helpful and informative videos on Toe By Toe, recorded during a live Teaching Training session:
In many situations where a parent assumes the role of Toe By Toe tutor to their child, the parent may well be the one delivering most of the lessons. However, if the school also shares the burden of using Toe By Toe with your child, it is important that the school monitors progress carefully to ensure that the course is being followed as intended.
The Toe By Toe exercises deliberately uses a grading system of ticks and dots (instead of ‘crosses’ to indicate a wrong answer). Dots for wrong responses are friendlier and less hostile and intimidating for struggling readers, already with low self-esteem. By maintaining this Toe By Toe grading system it is very simple for all involved to monitor progress. In this sort of relationship, we recommend that schools look at a student’s Toe By Toe on a weekly basis to ensure that all is going well.
A Model Parent-School Toe By Toe Partnership
One school with an excellent parent-school Toe By Toe partnership is St George’s School, in Birmingham, UK.
Organised by the Special Educational Needs Co-ordinator (SENCO) Pia Abbott, the school enlists the help of parents who were also assigned as Toe By Toe ‘teacher mentors’. Each teacher takes on 3 to 5 families and monitors progress carefully. Tea parties, theatre trips etc have been organised to give cohesion to the scheme. Unswerving support from the Principal down has resulted in an impressively effective school-wide literacy training.
The scheme started in February 2006 and has yielded fantastic results.
Some comments from different participants:
“For the first time I feel I am doing something positive to help my child but I could not have done it on my own.”
“I’ve enjoyed the ‘get togethers’ with other parents and pupils. It’s stopped me feeling so isolated with the problem of a dyslexic child.”
“It’s been hard work and sometimes I haven’t wanted to do it after school but I’m pleased with the progress I’ve made.”
“I know I am more confident when I read in class. I don’t mind being asked quite so much.”
“What a difference in her reading. She’s become almost fluent in only five months.”
“Wow – I wish I’d found this years ago.”
Click here to discover How Schools Innovate Using Toe By Toe