By L. Braun
Walk through the halls at the Ohr HaLimud Girls School and you can see, hear, and feel the learning take place. Working in small groups, the girls at Ohr HaLimud learn in a true 1:1 Orton-Gillingham multisensory learning environment. What makes Ohr HaLimud different and why does it work? Ohr HaLimud is a non-graded school for girls ages 6–14. Classes are limited to 12 students. Most importantly, the students get Orton-Gillingham instruction daily in English language skills as well as Hebrew and/or Yiddish. Students are taught skills to automaticity and then are transitioned back to their mainstream community schools. The limudei kodesh curriculum covers a full scope of Judaic Studies including tefillah, Chumash, parashah, halacha, and Yahadus. There is a strong emphasis on developing middos tovos and an appreciation for who each student is. Limudei chol subjects include reading, writing, spelling, reading comprehension, public speaking, computer skills, math, science, and social studies. Extracurricular activities vary from year to year and include nutrition, art, music, and even photography. Students know that they are in Ohr HaLimud for a short time with the goal of returning to their previous school.
Over the past 11 years, Ohr HaLimud has partnered with schools from Flatbush, Boro Park, Crown Heights, Williamsburg, Far Rockaway, Kew Garden Hills, and Lakewood to help their students fill in their educational gaps and return successfully to their classrooms. Approximately 20 percent of the children in our community have learning profiles that are not aligned with the expectations and teaching methodologies prevalent in our yeshiva school systems. As a result, these students are often perceived as not being capable of performing well in school, unmotivated, or just not trying hard enough. These students often disengage with school, perform poorly, and may even be at risk to leave the derech. In spite of their learning difficulties, or perhaps because of them, these children, when taught with Ohr HaLimud’s multisensory approach to education, bring the strength of persistence, alternative problem solving, and creativity—along with their capable minds—to school, and later to the workplace and society. These children are the future of Klal Yisrael.
“In Ohr HaLimud, we focus on addressing the challenges as well as recognizing and nurturing the strengths of children with dyslexia and related learning differences. Our students have average to above average intelligence, but have not been able to achieve academic success in their community schools. The Orton-Gillingham approach works for these students,” said Mrs. Leah David, MS, and Ohr HaLimud’s executive director.
“The key to success for both students and teachers is the ongoing Orton-Gillingham teacher training provided by Ohr HaLimud’s (PDA) Professional Development Academy. We believe in taking educators to a higher level,” added Mrs. Faye Rottenberg, community outreach coordinator.
Registration is now open and parents are encouraged to call. Learn how a targeted educational cycle at the Ohr HaLimud Girls School will improve self-esteem and ensure academic success for your dyslexic learner. The educational team at Ohr HaLimud can be reached at 718-972-0170, ext. 113 or firstname.lastname@example.org. v