top of page

Frequently Asked Questions

The Slingerland® Approach revolutionized literacy instruction as the first whole-classroom adaption of the Orton-Gillingham method. Slingerland® offers a comprehensive, multisensory, structured literacy program inclusive of all five pillars promoted by the science of reading. Unlike most other Orton-Gillingham based programs, the Slingerland® Approach includes a handwriting component – for both manuscript and cursive – further reinforcing kinesthetic pathways for students.

The Slingerland® Approach can be utilized across an entire curriculum, not just reading and writing instruction. It is unique in its adaptability to whole classroom instruction as well as individual tutoring.

As an instructional program, the Slingerland® Approach includes daily lessons in oral language, handwriting, phonology (letter/sound correspondences), phonics, encoding, spelling and morphology, written language, decoding, reading comprehension, and reading fluency. It is structured and multisensory – utilizing auditory, visual and kinesthetic-motor sensory channels simultaneously. As students internalize the approach, they can apply it independently to new concepts.

The Slingerland® Approach can benefit students of any age. The approach encompasses learning concepts from pre-reading skills through complex language structures. It has been used with great success in general education classrooms, remediation programs, programs for students with language-based learning differences like dyslexia, English language learner programs, and in adult literacy programs.

The complexities of individual learning vary greatly and this makes it difficult to predict how long a student may take to advance through literacy instruction. While some students become confident readers and writers more quickly, others may gain strategies but continue to struggle in specific areas.

Brain imaging studies have identified common areas in the brain related to reading problems. These same areas can be seen in imaging after remediation - even though students have acquired sufficient skills to become adequate readers and writers. No approach to learning is a cure for language-based learning differences. However, the Slingerland® Approach was created to benefit all types of learners.

How do we learn to read? What does that mean about how we should be taught? Great questions! Not surprisingly, theories and debates about reading and literacy instruction have been with us for a long time.  

Luckily, there is a huge body of research on this topic that includes hundreds of scientists and thousands of studies. This comprehensive body of research encompasses years of scientific knowledge, spans many languages, and shares the contributions of experts from education, special education, literacy, psychology, neurology, and more. The research in its entirety has established a scientifically undisputed evidence base for how reading works often called “the science of reading.” The science of reading demystifies how we learn to read and offers evidence, backed by science, confirming there IS a right way to teach reading. In fact, a structured literacy approach is a necessary foundation for reading success. 

Scientifically informed literacy instruction is beneficial to all students and especially to those who struggle with reading. Slingerland® offers a comprehensive, multisensory, structured literacy program inclusive of all pillars promoted by the science of reading. 

Research confirms the Slingerland® Approach has been effectively teaching reading for over 60 years. 

The Slingerland® Literacy Institute (headquartered in Bellevue, WA) was established in 1977 to promote literacy through the work of Beth H. Slingerland and the Slingerland® Approach. A Board of Directors sets policies and budgets for implementation by the Executive Director. Training sites are set up at the request of local educational organizations or class participants. Online classes are increasingly available.

The Slingerland® Literacy Institute is a 501(c)(3) non-profit organization. Gifts are tax-deductible to the extent allowed by law. Our tax ID number is 91-1189697.

bottom of page