Grandparents of Trident Academy students experienced true multisensory learning when they spent the day in class with their grandchildren. Middle School grandparents were treated to a farm-to-table brunch, while Lower School grandparents made turtles out of Play-Doh and enjoyed a Writer’s Tea.
“Our goal with this year’s Grandparents Day was to give them a true appreciation of how their grandchildren learn, and how they overcome their learning difference in fun and unique ways,” explains Rhonda McKenna, event organizer and middle school program coordinator.
All grandparents participated in four Language Enrichment and Development (LEAD) demonstrations, that showcase the Orton-Gillingham approach. One demonstration simulated the difficulties a student with dyslexia may have while copying notes from a board or PowerPoint presentation. Grandparents copied what was on the paper, though they had to use their non-dominant hand and look into a mirror. LEAD Teacher Judy Fell led a demonstration on Math-u-See, a multisensory approach to teaching math, and Orton-Gillingham Fellow Sheila Costello lead a demonstration about phonics. LEAD Teachers Elizabeth Alexander and Suzanne Knowlton worked with students to show the grandparents how they incorporate sensory learning into their spelling.
Lower School students in Kathleen Loveland’s class worked with their grandparents to build crawfish and turtles out of Play-Doh. They have live crawfish to learn from, and have recently adopted a turtle. Then, the class held a Writer’s Tea in the main hallway in which the students shared a story they wrote with the audience.