In the 1920s, Dr. Samuel T. Orton and Anna Gillingham created a method that was phonic-based, systematic, explicit, highly structured and multi-sensory to help students with dyslexia — known as the Orton-Gillingham method. Today we know this same method as Structured Literacy™, and it benefits all learners, general education and remedial.

Structured Literacy emphasizes the structure of language through:


How the elements of Structured Literacy are taught:


Up to 50 percent of children require direct, or explicit, instruction to learn to read proficiently, while up to 15 percent of children need explicit instruction to learn to read. Each sound and symbol is taught in isolation (as a discrete unit) until children can manipulate the sounds and symbols to create words and sentences independently.

Adapted from: Young, N., Lyon, IDA, & Hempenstall. (2017). Structured Reading Infographic: Ladder of Reading. Retrieved August 01, 2018, from all-students/


Some children learn to read regardless of the type of reading instruction received. Approximately 40 percent of children learn to read relatively easy with broad, or implicit, instruction. These students can recognize patterns and words as a whole. However, all children still benefit from direct instruction to reach their maximum reading potential.


IMSE believes that all children should be able to read. To achieve this end, IMSE wants to bring Orton-Gillingham to all educators to give children the best literacy instruction possible.

Learn more about what you can do to improve literacy for all using the Institute for Multi-Sensory Education’s Orton-Gillingham training.

Please connect with us on FacebookTwitter, and Pinterest to get tips and tricks from your peers and us. Read the IMSE Journal to hear success stories from other schools and districts, and be sure to read the OG Weekly email series for refreshers and tips.