Reading, Writing, Spelling (RWS)
RWS work together to allow communication between people. Learning has a loose hierarchical structure rather than the tight structure that exists in subjects like mathematics. This means some things need to be taught before others (e.g. the sounds letters make before decoding words), but many aspects can be taught when they become relevant rather than at a specific stage.
Students who become good at RWS generally have a few common traits:
- They are able to see patterns in what they read and apply these same patterns to their own writing.
- They are able to imagine well when they are reading.
- They seek opportunities to read and write.
- They are tenacious learners.
Our tutoring is focused on the development of these traits.
How does it work?
- Students complete diagnostic testing to ensure that the essential building blocks for RWS are there. If they are not there, our tutors provide lessons that help develop them.
- Once these basics are in place, the student’s own reading and writing are used to develop individual lessons that focus on the most relevant thing to teach next. This forms the largest part of tutoring lessons.
- Other lessons are provided along the way to introduce concepts that may be outside the student’s current experience (for example, introducing persuasive writing).
The role of the parent is vital in developing RWS skills. We believe that good parent participation contributes at least 70% to the success of the learner in RWS. Please consider the contribution expected by parents before committing to tutoring with us.
We run short 30-minute lessons with students and focus on the best thing for your child to learn next. This lesson is rarely sufficient for the student to gain mastery in the new skill and, for mastery to occur, some practice needs to take place. Following the lesson, our tutors send an email with a list of tasks to complete before the next lesson. The parent needs to ensure that this follow-up happens and that the work is submitted prior to the next tutoring session.
There are some other things that need to happen for RWS skills to develop and are important for parents to implement:
- Reading for enjoyment (this is usually different from using a school reader) should be happening each day. This requires a careful selection of books and a lot of reading with your child.
- Multiple opportunities for reading need to be provided (for example, having your child help you with a new recipe or asking their opinion on a news article).
- Multiple meaningful opportunities for writing need to be provided (for example, writing to a grandparent or publishing a regular blog).
Our course best aligns with students in mid-primary to mid-secondary.
To use our tutoring, you need the following:
- An internet connection that provides a reasonable speed (if you are able to stream video then your speed will be fine). Slower speeds will still work for most things but live sessions may be less responsive.
- An internet connected device that has a microphone, speakers and camera.
- For live lessons, a laptop or desktop machine is highly recommended.
- For other lessons, a tablet, iPad or even a smartphone can be used.
- A working email address that can be used by our mentors to communicate with you.
- You may also need to be able to take photos of work and upload to our learning centre.
Four weeks of access to RWS tutoring includes the following:
- Weekly online, one on one session with a tutor up to 30 minutes.
- Unlimited email followup with the tutor (tutors normally reply withing one workday).
- Weekly emailed work assignments from the tutor outlining the objective of the last session and follow up tasks required.