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  • Writer's pictureDyslexia Media

Rewiring the Brain: Unveiling the Therapeutic Power of Sounds In Syllables


When it comes to helping individuals overcome challenges in reading and language, many Orton-Gillingham based programs claim to offer solutions. Sounds In Syllables (SIS) stands out for its efficacy in remediating all levels of dyslexia through its comprehensive approach. SIS is a therapy level program utilized by Academic Language Therapists. You might be wondering, why is it called a ‘therapy level’ program? The answer lies in the highly intensive nature of this program, both in terms of the amount of time required for remediation and the depth of instruction. In this blog post, we will delve into the reasons why the SIS program is rightly labeled as a therapeutic approach to language and reading difficulties, and how it actively engages the concept of neuroplasticity to reshape and strengthen neural connections for reading and spelling.


Understanding Academic Language Therapy

Before delving into the ‘therapy’ aspect, it's crucial to gain a deep understanding of what Sounds In Syllables (SIS) represents. SIS is a specialized intervention meticulously crafted to assist individuals, with a particular focus on children and students, in conquering a spectrum of language-based learning challenges. These challenges encompass issues like dyslexia, reading difficulties, spelling hurdles, and comprehension obstacles. What sets SIS apart from conventional tutoring is its dedication to employing a methodical, structured, and multisensory approach to instill essential language skills. This unique approach lies at the heart of the program, making it an exceptional choice for those seeking to overcome language-related learning barriers.


One of SIS's remarkable features is its focus on ‘rewiring the brain.’ The program recognizes that guessing responses weaken neural connections and hinder progress. Therefore, it employs very specific procedures that actively eliminate guessing responses. Instead, SIS encourages learners to engage in automatic and accurate responses, fostering the creation and strengthening of neural connections that are vital for effective reading and spelling. This commitment to rewiring the brain sets SIS apart as a comprehensive and highly effective academic language therapy program.

student writing letters in sand

The Therapy Element and Neuroplasticity

The therapy element in the SIS program is multifaceted, and it's deeply intertwined with the fascinating concept of neuroplasticity. Here's how:


1. Highly Intensive: The brain is remarkably adaptable and can rewire itself to acquire new skills. The intensity of SIS capitalizes on this neuroplasticity. By providing extensive, structured, and regular instruction, the program creates an environment where the brain is continually exposed to the challenges of reading and spelling. This constant engagement fosters the strengthening and rewiring of neural connections associated with language processing.


2. Individualized Approach: Neuroplasticity is maximized when the learning experience is tailored to an individual's specific needs. The SIS program, with its personalized plans and targeted interventions, hones in on the areas where the learner needs the most support. This not only accelerates the acquisition of language skills but also encourages the brain to adapt by forming new neural pathways.


3. Systematic and Sequential: Neuroplasticity relies on repetition and structured learning. SIS’s systematic and sequential curriculum provides ample opportunities for repeated exposure to language concepts. Over time, this repetition strengthens the neural connections associated with reading and spelling, making these processes more automatic and efficient.


4. Multisensory Techniques: Engaging multiple senses in the learning process aligns with the principles of neuroplasticity. As learners interact with language through sight, sound, touch, and movement, their brains adapt to the multisensory input. This diversity of sensory experiences enhances the brain's plasticity, resulting in more robust neural connections for reading and spelling.


5. Long-Term Commitment: Neuroplasticity is a long-term process. Just as patients undergoing physical or mental health therapy recognize the need for time to see results, Academic Language Therapy acknowledges the significance of long-term commitment to foster neuroplastic changes in the brain. It's this commitment to SIS that allows individuals to create and strengthen the neural connections necessary for successful reading and spelling.


In conclusion, the term ‘therapeutic’ isn't just a label; it's a reflection of SIS’s dedication to providing intensive, personalized, and comprehensive support to individuals with language-based learning difficulties while harnessing the power of neuroplasticity. Through the program's structured and multisensory approach, individuals actively reshape and strengthen neural connections, unlocking their full potential in the world of academics. Sounds In Syllables isn't just a therapy for language and reading difficulties; it's a therapy that embraces the brain's innate capacity for change and growth.


Learn more about the difference between an Academic Language Therapist and a Tutor :

Therapist or Tutor
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