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Household Hacks For Orton-Gillingham Lessons


Hey Orton-Gillingham teachers and tutors! Do you have this problem? Any store you walk in, you spot ordinary, household objects that you could use in your Orton-Gillingham lessons. My wheels are always turning. And if you’re like me, with small children at home, you do NOT have a lot of spare time. I need to find materials quickly and efficiently, in a variety of places.

Using the Orton-Gillingham approach means we are multisensory, prescriptive, and structured. But in my experience, OG teachers are creative, empathetic and flexible thinkers. If something isn’t working, we ditch and fix it…ASAP. We have our eyes on the prize. Through thoughtful, Orton-Gillingham lesson planning, we are building readers. Powerful stuff!

So you’re walking through Dollar Tree or Target and you need some pet food. At second glance, that pet food dish is looking like a pretty handy sorting tray. Or you’re at the grocery store shopping for a party. That chip and dip platter is looking like a great tool for long vowels. See how my brain works? (scary 🙂 )  If you love household hacks, this post is for you!

Use these household hacks for easy planning.

1. Balloon Clothespins
These are great for using with clip cards. And they last longer than the wooden clothespins because the spring is much stronger.

2. Pet food dishes/Veggie and Dip Platters
These work really well for word sorting activities. I used reusable dry erase tape to label the sections.

3. Tap Lights
In the first photo, I used some of my boys toy cars for tracing over the shapes of these felt letters found on a recent trip to Target. You could also use fingers for tracing.

I used tap lights as a classroom teacher for a fun way to review. We used them in a quiz show format. Players tapped the light on when they knew the answer. For Orton-Gillingham, you could use them for sound segmentation, counting syllables, or a review game for spelling generalizations. Kids could tap the light on for k or ck. Once again, I used dry erase tape because it’s removable and anything dry erase is like gold to me.

4. Travel Case For Baby Wipes
This is my most favorite hack of all. I found the case in the baby food aisle at the supermarket. On the left side is a piece of magnet paper that is self adhesive on the back. You can buy it on a roll and cut it to fit. On the right side, I hot glued some mini clothespins. You will need to use a lot of hot glue and press down hard to get them to stay. Then I added some velcro tape and more dry erase tape. This is PERFECT for O.G. tutors who travel, or for parents to create. I can intro a lesson on a new phonogram all in the case. The phonogram card clips on. I have magnetic letters ready for blending and spelling, and some pom poms with velcro stickers on the back for tapping and blending. The dry erase tape is a great place for dictation.


Notice the way you can add additional magnetic letters for practice blending and spelling practice. Swap out the a for an i or o. Swap out the t for a d or an m.


Are you loving these household hacks as much as I am? I’d love to hear if you do. If you have an extra special hack, please share it in the comments. I might try it out next time!

I have FOUR special announcements! 

1. Check out the Word List Builder Membership site in the banner above! Search, create, save and print your own time-saving word lists, word cards, phrasing templates and games for ANY lesson with the highly specialized Word List Builder search engine! It’s all web based, so no need to lug around or use software that needs to be installed and updated. Use it on a computer or mobile device. The updates on Word List Builder are automatic, so you never have to reinstall. The power is in Word List Builder’s unique search engine. Enjoy a 21 free trial when you register. :


 Try Word List Builder!   

2. Calling all Orton-Gillingham tutors and therapists! I have a directory of qualified educators on my site for parents to search. Join or search when you click on “Word List Builder” at the top. When you are there, click on   “Find A Tutor” or go HERE. You may register to enter your contact information in the directory for only $10 a year. Families may search the directory for free!

 Try Tutor Finder Directory!

3. There will be a TPT sale on May 7-8, 2019! Save up to 25% off in my store. The promo code is GIFT4U. ALSO… Check my Facebook Page, The Literacy Nest, for a BIG giveaway starting early Tuesday May 7, 2019! SHOP HERE.

TpT sitewide sale in my store on 5/7-5/8!

4. Enrollment is OPEN for Tutor Success Academy! If you are seeking to transition out of the classroom for any reason, this six-week, self-paced course is just what you need to get started. Learn more HERE.

A HUGE thank you for your continued support of me, my store and my new website! It is greatly appreciated!





Thank you for stopping by my blog today!


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