Message from Gayle
Welcome to The Reading Room!
COVID-19 has given me the gift of time. Time to reflect on where I am going and what I want to be doing. Time to understand how I can contribute something unique to my community.
Sometime in at the beginning of Corona, when life was very quiet and days were very long, the ideas behind The Reading Room began to take hold.
I established The Reading Room for motivated students with reading disabilities, learning disadvantages or diverse language backgrounds, to learn to read and write properly in English.
In order to fully understand my intention, there are three issues I would like to highlight.
1. English speakers, who are native, bilingual, second or third language speakers, DO NOT necessarily read at the same level which they speak. For example, a child raised by American-born parents, might read English as a second reading language. This could be because their language of education and community is in Hebrew, so they prefer reading in Hebrew; or because they have dyslexia.
2. It is crucial that the way we learn to read and the way we teach others to read, is based on methodology and instruction reflected in the research and the science of reading. Over the past two decades, the field has exploded in English speaking countries, including emphasis on teaching English reading to English Language Learners (ELLs).
English, however, is not Israel’s first language, and our students are a bit different than ELLs living in Australia, England, Canada, and the USA. We might have to tweak recommendations for remedial reading instruction coming out of other countries; but there is still much we can learn from experts in reading development, methodology and instruction.
3. It is time to begin a public and ongoing discussion about dyslexia, in Israel specifically. We need to talk about how living and learning in a multi-linguistic society, especially when the alphabet of each language is different form each other, is so difficult for people with dyslexia. And how that difficulty influences all aspects of life.
I hope you will join me on this journey. Please take a moment to consider which of your children or students might benefit from English lessons at The Reading Room. And join our FB page to become a part of the discussion.
Wishing you good health during these challenging times!