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Brooklyn Letters

Google review, Brooklyn LettersBrooklyn Letters (Online Speech Language Therapy, Literacy & Math Tutoring)

1139 Prospect Avenue, Brooklyn

4.9 41 reviews

  • Google review, Brooklyn Letters Lesley Duval ★★★★★ a week ago
    Theo was fantastic with our 4yo son. We were very worried that his progress would fall off when we had to switch to remote sessions, but Theo kept our son happy and engaged through the screen. Highly highly recommend!
  • Google review, Brooklyn Letters Samantha Packard ★★★★★ 2 months ago
    We've been working with Theo from Brooklyn Letters for close to 4 months now and the results are apparent; our daughter has vastly improved her speech in a relatively short amount of time. We make "Theo Day" a celebration … More in our house with pancakes for breakfast, and the enthusiasm is matched in the sessions. Theo is fun, patient, professional, and caring, and he gives us the tools to take the lessons beyond the session. Thank you Theo, and Brooklyn Letters, for helping our daughter express herself.
  • Google review, Brooklyn Letters Travis Ricca ★★★★★ 5 months ago
    I worked with Alina to enhance my pronunciation, tone, and pacing while communicating socially and in a work environment. She was great to work with and clear about goals and learning objectives. The improvement from day 1 has been tremendous! … More
  • Google review, Brooklyn Letters Enrico Bermudez ★★★★★ 4 months ago
    Cathy has been excellent with us and our son. We will sorely miss her. He has improved significantly with Cathy’s help. Cathy was a true partner with us, especially as we pursued additional help through our son’s school system.
  • Google review, Brooklyn Letters Kayne Elisabeth Wilk ★★★★★ 9 months ago
    We really loved working with Alina, she is so fantastic. Patient yet firm, and determined the best course of action very clearly and succintly for us. And it all transitioned so well to Zoom as well. I will definitely be back in touch for … More services for our other child after summer break!
  • Google review, Brooklyn Letters Jen S ★★★★★ a year ago
    Vera was amazing! My 11 yo daughter made progress so quickly and really looked forward to her sessions. She was kept motivated and engaged.
  • Google review, Brooklyn Letters susie tofte ★★★★★ 9 months ago
    The work that Allison P. did with our daughter over the years has been invaluable to us. Our daughter had such a good relationship with Allison, and it allowed them to work really well together - even remotely these past 6 months. This … More year, Allison went above and beyond by helping us throughout the neuropsych eval we did, trying to re-open our daughter's IEP at her school, and eventually landing her at our chosen school. She was in contact with our daughter's teachers, with the neuropsychologist, and made herself available as a reference to speak on behalf of our daughter's learning differences.
    Allison stopped by our house last week to give our daughter cupcakes and say goodbye, and I literally cried with appreciation for what an amazing speech therapist she has been. She has been our daughter's biggest champion. The new families that she will work with this year are lucky to have her.
  • Google review, Brooklyn Letters Alicia Perez-Katz ★★★★★ a year ago
    Sydney was great! Our son was sad to end his sessions with her, which says a lot. We appreciated her honest assessment of his skill level, and he now has materials to self monitor and practice. Thank you!
  • Google review, Brooklyn Letters Jacob B ★★★★★ a year ago
    We were delighted with Christie. First, and most importantly, our son made great strides under her guidance. So great, that we felt he no longer needed help! She was incredibly patient and kind with him and our son really responded to … More her. Christie was also great with me and my wife. She provided thorough and informative updates on our son's progress and which exercises she was using with him, so we could reinforce what she was teaching him. All in all, we had a fabulous experience with Christie and would highly recommend her.
  • Google review, Brooklyn Letters Kristin Ames ★★★★★ a year ago
    Our experience with Theo was terrific. Theo was great with my son. He developed a positive relationship with him based on sincerity, respect, trust and a deep personal connection. In their lessons, Theo was encouraging, creative and kind. … More He helped our son understand how to differentiate the sounds he made when he spoke, and gave him great exercises to practice every week between lessons. Our son was sorry to have the lessons come to an end, but recognized that Theo had helped him as much as possible and it was time for him to stop. Theo explained to him (and us) how to keep working to get the last 5%, and encouraged him to keep working on the exercises on his own. I have recommended Theo to another parent who noticed my son's improvement and inquired for her own son.
    We are all grateful to have gotten to know Theo, and we greatly appreciate all the work he did to help our son.
  • Google review, Brooklyn Letters Aisha Holder ★★★★★ a year ago
    "I have nothing but wonderful things to say about Michelle Macroy-Higgins. We are extremely pleased with her work with our daughter. I was so grateful for my daughter to have a speech therapist who is a researcher (specialty in late … More talkers), graduate professor and practitioner. Her expertise was clearly evident in our conversations and work with our daughter. She was very responsive to my questions and often sent articles and other materials about language development that I found helpful. Thankfully, my daughter's speech improved tremendously. Michelle developed such a warm relationship with my daughter. My daughter was always excited to see Michelle and would greet her at the door with a big hug. Lastly, I would add that Michelle always demonstrated empathy with me as a mother who was initially worried about her daughter's language development. I could go on and on about how pleased we were with Michelle's work."
  • Google review, Brooklyn Letters Andrea Peartree ★★★★★ a year ago
    Theo is a wonderful Clinton Hill speech therapist. We were really pleased with him. Our son showed drastic improvement, not only in his speech but in his confidence.
  • Google review, Brooklyn Letters mario costa ★★★★★ 2 years ago
    Alexa has been an enthusiastic, reliable, well prepared and caring teacher for our 6 year old daughter. She has been able to improve and increase our daughter's confidence lesson by lesson with patience and competence; through varied … More and productive didactic practice. Alexa has engaged our daughter in several activities that always kept her motivated and eager to learn literacy. My wife and I, both of us are educators, feel so fortunate to have had the opportunity to observe Alexa's pedagogical skills. Alexa has had a big impact on our daughter literacy growth. Thank you Brooklyn Letters!
  • Google review, Brooklyn Letters Lily Alt ★★★★★ a year ago
    We were absolutely DELIGHTED with Marsha's services. She was wonderful. We found her to be kind, fun, engaging, very knowledgeable. She provided us with clear instructions and additional written handouts each week. She engaged our … More son with different techniques and toys, and showed us how to use her techniques when we were interacting with him. I actually just texted her on Saturday - Our son finally said "more" - one of the target words we had been working on with her. It was a total joy to hear, and I had to share it with her - she wrote back immediately to congratulate us. I am so appreciative of her expertise, and wish we could have seen her for longer. I recommended her to another family in our neighborhood who is looking for a speech therapist.

Staten Island Reading Writing Tutors Specialists

COVID-19 learning loss, including up to 50% for math

HOW CAN WE HELP:

LITERACY SPECIALISTS

TRAVEL TIME IS INCLUDED WITH THESE RATES!

Staten Island Literacy rates

  • $130-$165 Per Hour

  • $110-$145 for 45 minutes

  • $90-$115 for 30 minutes (online only)

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Literacy Specialists

QUEENS STAFF

In-home and at-school Manhattan private pay literacy tutoring for school-aged students. We work with students, of all ages, in private and public schools teaching decoding, spelling, reading fluency, and reading comprehension skills.

We travel to North Shore, Mid Island, & the South Shore

Learning his or her ABCs is your child’s first step towards mastering reading and writing. But sometimes, teaching such an important skill can be confusing for parents. Do you start with the letter names or the letter sounds first? Is there a right way to teach a child the alphabet? Click here to read what speech-language pathologist Dr. Jan Wasowicz has to say on our blog!


Learning pods are not entirely new. But with the new school year approaching and Covid-19 cases still on the rise in many places across the country, more and more families are turning to learning pods to ensure the current health crisis does not hurt their children’s schooling even further. Click here to learn more and find out why pod parents find this new learning method appealing.


For many parents, pod learning is a great way to ensure academic growth without risking their children’s health and safety. If you’re wondering if pod learning is the right option for your family, we’re here to help. Brooklyn Letters and Themba Tutors Director Nicole, a homeschooling mom of four, talks to us about the benefits of pod learning and how to prepare your family for it. Click here to know more!

 

Literacy Specialists

Literacy Specialists

Our Literacy Specialists work on decoding, encoding (spelling), reading comprehension, and writing skills.

The Five Pillars of Reading

 

Just like a house needs strong support and foundation, developing literacy skills in young learners requires the Five Pillars of Reading. Recognized by the National Reading Panel as the “best approach to reading instruction,” these pillars include:

  • Phonemic awareness
  • Phonics
  • Vocabulary
  • Comprehension
  • Fluency

Backed by studies and scientific research, these five pillars make up the essential building blocks of reading. And by combining these techniques, teachers and parents can effectively introduce the concept of reading and language.

Here is a closer look at how the Five Pillars of Reading work to ensure successful reading instruction:

 

Phonemic Awareness

Phonemic awareness refers to the knowledge and understanding that words are built from and can be broken apart into smaller segments of a sound called phonemes. Phonemic awareness is one’s ability to hear, recognize, and manipulate sounds heard in words- think of it as the ears to brain connection. 

Phonemic awareness can be taught even before a child learns to read or identify printed letters. When babies are born, they are processing phonemes when parents speak and sing to their bundle of joy. In the English language, phonemic awareness means being able to identify approximately 44 phonemes. Additionally, teaching letter sounds with letter names is an effective way for students to grasp the concept of phonemes.

 

Phonics

Whereas phonemic awareness refers to one’s ability to recognize sounds or phonemes in words, phonics mastery means understanding that letters (graphemes or printed letters) of the alphabet represent sounds (phonemes)- think of it as the ears, eyes, and brain connection. A child who has mastered phonics can sound out new or unfamiliar words on their own. The child is “cracking the code” and is receiving feedback by listening to oneself sound out words. 

Teaching phonics is all about establishing the relationship between sounds and printed letters or printed letter combinations. Starting with the printed letter-sound correspondence, a child then learns how to match sounds to letters and uses this relationship to understand printed words. 

 

Vocabulary

Vocabulary refers to one’s understanding of words, including their definitions and context. Vocabulary is broken up into oral (speaking), understanding (listening), and print (reading vocabulary).

Needless to say, vocabulary is crucial in strengthening reading comprehension and fluency. In most instances, poor vocabulary can limit and interrupt a child’s learning and reading experience. And while it can grow naturally from daily reading and conversations, it is just as important to explicitly teach and expand vocabulary.

Strategies in teaching vocabulary can include word mapping (graphic display of words/concept relationships), word substitutions, semantic relationships (how words are related), acting out meanings, and focusing on word structure (root words and their derivations).

 

Fluency

Learners achieve fluency when they recognize and read words with accuracy, intonation, fluidity, and speed, whether while reading aloud or silently to oneself. Hence, fluent readers are able to read automatically without needing to pause to decode words or look up definitions.

Fluency plays a key role in comprehension and is essential in keeping young learners motivated. When children are reading fluently, it frees up mental resources to allow them to improve their comprehension of what they are reading. 

When developing reading fluency, it is crucial to provide a child with frequent oral reading opportunities and to monitor progress. This involves reading out loud while being guided and receiving feedback from an adult. It is important to provide the student with opportunities to self-correct. This combination of consistent practice and regular feedback is critical in promoting fluency.

 

Comprehension

The ultimate goal for literacy is to comprehend well what one is reading.  Reading comprehension enables a child to predict outcomes, evaluate characters, deduce, and make connections to real-world events. 

A child’s comprehension skills can begin to develop before becoming an independent reader. One way to do this is by reading to a child and discussing the story’s main idea, characters, and setting. Explicit teaching, modeling, and guided practice of comprehension skills are also crucial. This is especially true for students whose reading comprehension skills lag behind their peers.

STATEN ISLAND STAFF

DR. CHRIS

Special Educator, Wilson and Orton-Gillingham Certified, Reading, Writing
Literacy Specialists

Dr. Chris received a PhD in urban education from the Graduate Center of the City University of New York. He received a Masters degree in special education from Hunter College, also of the City University of New York. He has spent much of his 25-year career as a literacy specialist working with students with learning disabilities. He has been a tutor, public and private school teacher, a literacy specialist, an administrator, and a college professor. His focus in all of these positions and stages of his career has been to teach children to read. As a teacher and tutor, he developed literacy skills in children of all ages but mostly older children, between 10 and 18. As a professor, he has taught special education methods with a focus on literacy instruction. He has made it his personal mission to teach his graduate students how to teach children who struggle with basic reading skills such as decoding and fluency and, of course, comprehension. Throughout his career, he has been shocked by how many teachers, special education teachers included, are unprepared to help children who struggle with reading. He has many years of experience using and teaching Orton Gillingham-based decoding methods (Wilson Reading System, Recipe for Reading, etc.) and reading comprehension instructional methods such as Reciprocal Teaching, Visualizing and Verbalizing, among others. He is also experienced in writing instructional methods such as Basic Writing Skills (Hochman), and Framing Your Thoughts (Project Read). He is also versed in helping children develop executive function skills.

KAITLYN

Bachelor’s degree in Childhood Education (Grades 1-6), Master’s Degree in Special Education (Grade 1- Grade 6)
Literacy Specialists

Kaitlyn is a childhood (Grade 1- Grade 5) special education teacher at a public school in Brooklyn. She obtained a Bachelor’s degree in Childhood Education (Grades 1-6) from The College of Staten Island. She continued at The College of Staten Island to obtain a Master’s Degree in Special Education (Grade 1- Grade 6). Kaitlyn recently completed the CITE program through The College of Saint Rose to obtain advanced certifications in School Building Leadership and School District Leadership. Kaitlyn has six years of experience working with students with diverse backgrounds. She has experience working with students with ADHD, autism, speech and language impairments, and dyslexia. She prides herself in differentiating her instruction to meet her students’ unique needs. She has experience teaching the Common Core Standards and newly adapted Next Generation Learning Standards. Kaitlyn incorporates the Wilson/Fundation program in her teaching and applies the Orton-Gillingham approach. She is currently teaching in a 4th grade ICT setting as the special education teacher and also has experience as a 1st grade special education teacher. Kaitlyn worked at A+ Academy as a 4th and 5th grade test prep teacher specializing in math instruction and summer school for the Department of Education during the summers of 2018-2019.

Kaitlyn works with a student-centered approach celebrating their accomplishments and building their self-confidence. Kaitlyn teaches with the use of manipulatives and scaffolds. She specializes in teaching test preparation skills in reading, writing, and math. Kaitlyn provides support to students with phonics instruction, decoding, developing comprehension skills using a variety of sources. She has experience using the programs Go-Math, NY Engage, Envisions, and Everyday Math. She teaches strategies for students to apply classroom learning to real life.

Kaitlyn teaches that communication is key for forming meaningful relationships with teachers, parents, and service providers in order to support student’s wellbeing and development. Every student is a success story!

LOCATION: Brooklyn: All Areas, Lower Manhattan, Staten Island, New Jersey

TYPE OF SERVICES: Initial Reading Evaluation, Individualized reading, writing, and math intervention, Multisensory Reading, Executive Functioning

EXPERTISE: Working with students with disabilities and building their executive functioning, improving  phonemic awareness, decoding skills, and comprehension, improving understanding of math concepts using manipulatives and real world connections

AGES: Kindergarten-6th Grade

TEST PREP: Grades 3-5 ELA and Math State Tests

MEGAN

NYS Certified Educator with Master’s in Special Education/Childhood Education & Certification in Orton-Gillingham
Literacy Specialists

Megan graduated from Boston College with a Bachelor of Arts Degree in Elementary Education and Human Development/Applied Psychology, with a minor in Special Education, and with a Division I Athletic Scholarship to play softball for four years. She then received her Master’s Degree in Special Education & Childhood Education, and a NYS Teaching Certification from Fordham University. Megan received Certification in the Orton-Gillingham method to teach reading to students with reading difficulties.

Throughout Megan’s seven years of lead teaching experience, she has taught in various educational settings across Manhattan, meeting wonderfully diverse students. For three years, Megan taught in a general education setting and is experienced in the Common Core curricula while working with General Education students, English Language Learners, and students with disabilities, teaching core subjects (e.g., reading, writing, math, social studies, science) to second through fifth graders. For the last four years, Megan has been a Special Education Head Teacher at a private special education school. She is responsible for creating and implementing individualized instruction across academic domains to meet the specific needs of students with a variety of learning and physical disabilities, and learning differences including students diagnosed with autism, dyslexia, speech and language impairments, social pragmatic language disorder, ADD/ADHD, learning disorder in reading/math, dysgraphia, developmental coordination disorder, mood disorders, and students with hearing impairments. Due to the pandemic, Megan gained experience teaching remotely, as well as teaching on-ground students simultaneously with remote learners each day.

Megan believes and gratefully witnesses how all students have the potential to grow and succeed both in and out of the classroom. She understands the importance of getting to know a student as a whole, while building off a student’s strengths, honoring their developing skills or challenges, and including their interests within instruction. Megan believes using this understanding to develop an individualized program for a student, while providing a warm, comfortable and fun environment is essential in supporting a student’s academic success. Megan focuses on positive encouragement as a tool to help students develop confidence and build or continue their love for learning.

LOCATIONS: Staten Island, Manhattan; In-Person & Online
TYPES OF SERVICES: Individualized reading and writing instruction/remediation (grades pre-K through 6th), and math instruction (grades pre-K through 3rd)

EXPERTISE: Reading, writing and math instruction/intervention; Learning differences and disabilities; Orton-Gillingham approach

AGES: Pre-K through 6th Grade

Dr. Tamara

NY State Early Childhood and Students with Disabilities (B-2)
Literacy Specialists

Tamara is a veteran early childhood educator with over 25 years of experience in the field. She holds an MST and MsEd from Fordham University, an MBA, and an Ed.D from Johns Hopkins University where she researched the impact adults have on children’s social/emotional development.

Tamara taught kindergarten for over 10 years, with experience in Pre-K, and first grade. She has also worked one-on-one with students from 2 to 20 years old in all areas of literacy acquisition, including phonics, phonemic awareness, writing, fluency and comprehension. She has been trained in Wilson, Fundations, Fountas and Pinnell, the Teacher’s College Reading and Writing Project, Reading Rescue and Reading Recovery and is currently the Associate Director of Professional Learning for Reading Rescue.

Tamara’s methods of instruction focus on the reading science through a multisensory approach to instruction, as well as on the fun. She prides herself on students LOVING her sessions. She works with students on not only their literacy skills, but also focusing on their self-esteem and comfort level so they are prepared to take their learning back to their classrooms.  She has experience working with students with various needs including ADHD, autism, anxiety, behavior disorders, and dyslexia.

Tamara has experience working with pre-K through fifth-grade math curricula. She supports students in developing all aspects of mathematics using a multi-sensory approach. Students use real-world situations and manipulatives to not only learn the HOW of math concepts, but also the WHY. Tamara has experience working with Everyday Math, Go Math, Singapore Math, and state test prep.

In addition to literacy support, Tamara provides test prep, executive functioning skills coaching, as well as study skills.

LOCATION: Brooklyn: Downtown Brooklyn, Sunset Park, Bensonhurst, Bay Ridge, Dyker Heights; Manhattan: Upper West Side, Midtown West, Chelsea, The Village, Financial District;  Staten Island; Bronx; New Jersey: Bergen and Hudson counties

TYPE OF SERVICES: Individualized reading instruction, test prep, executive functioning, study skills, parent consultation and coaching

EXPERTISE: Early childhood education, special education, early literacy acquisition, social/emotional development

AGES: birth through elementary school

NATALIE L.

Orton-Gillingham Trained
Literacy Specialists

Natalie Lombardo is a New York State Licensed Literacy Specialist (ages birth-grade 12) and Elementary Education Teacher. She holds a Bachelors of Science Degree and Masters in Literacy from St. John s University where she graduated Magna Cum Laude. She has training from Columbia Teachers College Program as well as Orton-Gillingham.

Natalie has worked with students for over 16 years and has a passion for working with students struggling to read. She has provided instruction using the Orton-Gillingham Approach, Wilson Fundations Program, Learning Without Tears, Fountas & Pinnell, Journey s Literacy Program, Go Math and Everyday Math. She is a part of her school’s instructional team and is involved in curriculum planning and writing.

Natalie believes that ALL children can learn and uses a multisensory approach and individualized instruction to ensure success. She uses her training, evaluation of the student’s needs and experience to develop a curriculum tailored to each child. She keeps her students engaged by using multisensory materials and student interest. Natalie also specializes in Executive Function Coaching. She assists students to focus, develop organizational skills, plan and prioritize, and time management. She helps students set individual learning goals and works with the parents to help her students achieve these goals and develop a love for learning.

LOCATION: Staten Island
TYPE OF SERVICES: Initial reading assessment, reading intervention, ELA instruction (phonemic awareness, decoding, comprehension, fluency & writing), test prep, elementary school math instruction & intervention, ELA & math enrichment
EXPERTISE: Working with children who have difficulty with decoding, reading fluency, reading comprehension, students with dyslexia, math intervention & enrichment
AGES: Pre school through Grade 6

Nicole M.

M.A. in Secondary Education English Teacher Specialization
Literacy Specialists

Nicole is currently a New York State certified Middle School English Teacher in Brooklyn, NY. She has worked with many different types of budding scholars from 5th graders through undergraduate college students. Her master’s degree was obtained at CUNY Brooklyn, where she graduated with distinction. Also, Nicole graduated Magna Cum Laude from Seton Hall University with a B.A. in English Honors. Her personal teaching philosophy is rooted in the words of the late, great educator Rita Pierson, “every child deserves a champion.” Nicole strives for a classroom that is inclusive, built on respect and rapport, and serves as a safe space for all learners. Each child deserves an equitable education that meets his or her needs.

Heading into her eight-year teaching, she has supported students with autism, ADHD, auditory processing disorders, visual processing disorders, dysgraphia, and struggling readers and writers. Nicole has been trained in the following programs: Engage NY, Google Apps for Education, and Expeditionary Learning. She is a Level 1 Google Certified Educator who alpha and beta tested Google Classroom in its inception in 2013. In school, her classroom is marked by students’ intrinsic motivation to learn, the inquiry process, student-centered learning, technology implementation, and fun!

Nicole specializes in English Language Arts, NYS English Regents Prep, and standardized test prep tutoring. Through patience, understanding, and conversation, she seeks to elevate all of her students. Each student will receive individualized instruction that challenges him or her through the usage of leveled texts. Every student’s program will be designed with his or her interests in order to establish a common ground and appropriate entry point for the material. Additionally, each student’s progress will be assessed to ensure the lessons are data-driven. Her students will gain comprehension through dialogue, questioning the text, making self-to-text connections, annotation, chunking, and summary. Vocabulary skills will be strengthened through practice, usage, and connotation study.

LOCATION: Brooklyn: Bensonhurst, Bay Ridge, Dyker Heights, Park Slope, Mill Basin, Sheepshead Bay, Bergen Beach, Marine Park areas/communities
Staten Island: Bay Terrace, West Brighton, Castleton Corners, Old Town, Great Kills, Westerleigh, Historic Richmondtown, Grymes Hill, and Todt Hill areas/communities
TYPE OF SERVICES: Initial reading assessments, individualized reading intervention and instruction, essay writing assistance, test prep
EXPERTISE: Assessment and intervention for those struggling with reading comprehension and writing
AGES: 6th grade to undergraduate college students

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