The Learning Lounge Program

At Beaumaris Primary school, we believe that getting the building blocks right in literacy in the early years of schooling is essential to students becoming confident and capable readers and spellers. Beaumaris Primary school monitors the achievements of students on a continuous basis and identifies where students may have missed or not picked up the necessary skills to achieve literacy success.

We have an intervention program designed to support the reading and spelling development of children identified as in need of additional learning support. Students who participate in this program have been identified through individualised literacy assessments to understand their strengths and also find out what they next need to learn. The needs may vary from phonemic awareness, phonics, reading fluency, vocabulary development, spelling and or reading comprehension. Support is provided via one on one or small group sessions in an area away from the classroom for 10 - 40 minutes once or twice a week.

The Learning Support program follows the MSL (multi- sensory language) OG (Orton Gillingham) approach. This approach was developed by neurologist Dr Samuel Orton and educator and psychologist, Anna Gillingham in the 1930s. It was developed for students with dyslexia but it is beneficial for all students. This approach incorporates explicit teaching of letter sound relationships, syllable patterns, spelling rules and morphology (meaning of word parts).

A number of characteristics define the MSL OG approach:

  • Systematic and cumulative – basic to more advanced concepts and incorporates lots of practise over and over again
  • Comprehensive and inclusive – all levels of language are addressed including phonemic awareness, sound, symbols, word parts (syllables), and word and phrase meanings – ensures no gaps – there is a recommended scope and sequence
  • Direct instruction – plain language, directly expressed, clearly stated NOT merely implied. Sequence of teaching is: I do, we do, you do
  • Cognitive – the ‘how’s and whys’ of language are addressed – English isn’t crazy – there are reasons and rules to explain our language. MSL explains these reasons and rules to students
  • Simultaneous, multi –sensory – uses the 3 learning pathways of visual, auditory and kinaesthetic (VAK) to enhance memory and learning.
An example of a lesson with students is provided below:
  • Handwriting component (alphabet)– Prep to 3
  • Sound pack – cumulative – based on what they have learned to date
  • Phoneme encoding (whiteboard) – sounds or words
  • Review existing skills:
    • Reading words (flash cards/powerpoint) –previously taught
    • Spelling words – previously taught
  • Teach new skill
    • Explicit instruction
    • Reading new words (flash cards)
    • Spelling new words
    • Memory words (irregular words) – read and spell
  • Introduce new memory word:
  • Dictation – new skill and memory words
  • Phonemic awareness activity
The Learning Lounge welcomes parents to visit any time. The program is conducted in the south end of the Susan Arnts Learning Centre building.