Introduction to the Darwin Remedial Reading Program – Part 1/2

The aim here is to provide teachers, tutors and parents with the guidance and support that will allow them to implement the Program with ease and efficiency.

To stimulate confidence in this work, testimonials are being presented. The first one is upcoming while the others can be viewed by going to the home page of, and then referring to Examples of Effectiveness and Letters of Acknowledgement.


When I first met a severely dyslexic 12 year old, she could not read words such as log, hut and tap. However, within 15 minutes of her first session she was applying the Program’s unique decoding techniques and was independently reading words of this nature.

Her resource teacher had sat in on the session and was so impressed that she bought the Program then and there. She was using it within a couple of days and continued to do so until she retired. She later mentioned that within the two years she had used the Program she didn’t encounter a single child who didn’t benefit from it.

Info for Parents: You should only tutor your child if it does not result in stress and frustration. The reasoning here is that these factors not only inhibit learning but they can also have a negative impact on the parent/child relationship. For alternatives to parental tutoring, see page 3 in the Program’s Guide/Workbook.

To avoid excessive pronoun clutter (e.g. he/she), the masculine pronoun is used when a student is being referred to as this reflects the prevalence of males to females with learning difficulties.

Choosing a Tutor

If parental tutoring results in frustration and stress on a fairly regular basis, it should be avoided as such factors not only inhibit learning but more significantly they can also have a negative impact on the parent/child relationship. Therefore, unless things are going well, hire a tutor or use the services of a reputable learning center. Another alternative would be for parents of children with learning problems to link up and tutor each other’s children.

Attributes to Look for in a Tutor

Give priority to personality traits (e.g. a warm and caring nature, respect for others and patience) rather than an academic background as one can always acquire the science of teaching by referring to an effective program, but the art of teaching is inherent.

Determining a Tutor’s Effectiveness

Weekly or bi-weekly meetings (phone calls work well) for the first month or two in conjunction with the child’s reaction will facilitate this determination.


Minna Trower
Bachelor of Education, McGill University
Diploma in Special Education, McGill University
Diploma in Physical Education, McGill University