Transitioning into Trident Academy: “The decision wasn’t about what was easier for me.”

The story is often the same: a family chooses to explore the educational opportunities at Trident Academy because their child finds reading, writing, and even math challenging regardless of their intelligence. Students who struggle with disorders of written expression (often known as dyslexia) find relief in the teaching approaches used by teachers in The School for Language-Based Learning Differences at Trident Academy.
One family recently shared that, for their daughter, the teaching methods at her previous school conflicted with her ability to comprehend the lessons. “Bennet was taught to memorize concepts but not why certain letters formed a specific sound, or why multiplication works the way it does,” shared her mother, Sharon. “For a child with dyslexia, memorization does not work.”

The School for Language-Based Learning Differences at Trident Academy is built on the Orton-Gillingham approach. This is a structured, sequential, multisensory, phonetic approach to reading that appeals to each child’s unique way of learning. Sheila Costello, Director of the LEAD Program and Orton-Gillingham Fellow, explains that, “With Orton-Gillingham, each lesson is carefully structured, introducing the elements of language systematically so that students’ learning experiences are predictable and orderly.”

As students like Bennet learn new material, they continue to review old material until their understanding becomes automatic. Sharon said that she saw changes in Bennet almost immediately after starting classes at Trident Academy. “Being taught what ‘ea’ sounds like and why, and learning the rules of why words are spelled the way they are, has really helped her writing.”

Like many students who struggle in the classroom, Sharon said Bennet’s confidence was eroding at her previous school. “By the time she left her old school, her confidence couldn’t have gotten any lower. After just a couple of weeks with Mrs. Loveland, Bennet could now take on the world!”

Classes are purposefully kept small to help the children learn, which also helps students create very strong bonds with each other. Still, friendships created at a student’s previous school are just as important. “Bennet still sees two or three of her really good girlfriends from her other school,” says Sharon. “We get together on weekends, and she even wants to get her old friends together with her new friends at Trident Academy.”

When asked whether the transition into Trident Academy was worth it and what other parents should know, Sharon shares, “This decision wasn’t about what was easier for me. Moving Bennet to Trident Academy meant that I would spend 40 minutes in the car both in the morning and in the afternoon. I didn’t care. What we see now has made it all worthwhile.”

Families who feel their child deserves an education that meets their learning profile are welcome to visit Trident Academy and learn more about the Orton-Gillingham approach. Email for more information or call the Admissions Office at 843.884.3494.


Leave a Reply