Developing Word Accuracy for Learners

This session has been completed.
Facilitators: Sylvia Hannah Sinclaire Kelly Gibbs

This is a multi-day event.

Day 1Oct 05, 2021 (4:00 pm to 6:00 pm MDT)
Day 2Oct 12, 2021 (4:00 pm to 6:00 pm MDT)
Day 3Nov 04, 2021 (4:00 pm to 6:00 pm MDT)
Day 4Nov 16, 2021 (4:00 pm to 6:00 pm MDT)
Day 5Nov 30, 2021 (4:00 pm to 6:00 pm MDT)
$125.00 (CAD)
Location: Virtual
Session Code: 22-LI-066
Focus: Assessment Beginner Teachers Curriculum Implementation Early Learning Educational / Instructional Assistants Educational Leadership English Language Arts English Language Learners Inclusive Education Instructional Coaching Instructional Strategies Literacy Welcoming, Caring, Respectful and Safe Learning Environments

Target Audience

Teachers (K - Grade 6)

About this Learning Opportunity

By attending this series on Developing Word Accuracy, you will be engaged with a Canadian teacher/author in learning how to accerlate the reading progress of our students!  Sylvia Hannah will share her knowledge to enable you to change your teaching practice by thinking, in detail, about how English sounds comprise the words we see.  You will learn to analyze why certain words are difficult to learn and why some words are easier.  Having this deeper understanding will qualify you to make the learning-to-read process easier for all of the students you teach.  ERLC is offering this session at a fraction of the cost of similar U.S. programs!

Children enjoy listening to stories before they enter school and look forward to reading stories when school begins. Learning to read words can be automatic for some children and it is a miraculous occurrence. Yet, learning to read words is a complex task that requires a great deal of knowledge on the part of students and those who work with them. “The process of building phoneme awareness, letter-sound association, and recognition of patterns in print” (Moats, 2020), is essential for the acquisition of good word reading skills.

Sylvia Hannah Sinclaire, author of “Why Your Child Can’t Read and Spell and What YOU Can Do About It”, will show how school staff, including teachers and educational assistants, as well as families, can support children in learning to decode and spell accurately.

Kelly Gibbs, Learning Facilitator for ERLC will support Sylvia’s work through the sessions and will be presenting as well.

The Seminar will enable you to:

  • STRUCTURE your literacy program to ensure that all of your students achieve word accuracy to advance their learning
  • Acquire confidence that you are utilizing RESEARCH in your teaching
  • Ensure that your students are working on ESSENTIAL word learning strategies
  • Have your students PROGRESS successfully when learning words

Over our sessions together, we will focus on:

  • An overview of Structured Literacy and Circles of Learning
  • The English word system of sounds and syllables
  • Phonological awareness sensitivity and proficiency
  • Using Sound Walls in the classroom
  • Learning how to make tricky vowel sounds easier to learn
  • Deciphering the most difficult words and syllables
  • Unlocking multi-syllable words AT THE SAME TIME as one-syllable words
  • Figuring out “unfair" words and orthographic mapping
  • Predictable letter/sound patterns and high frequency words
  • Useful reading and spelling principles for instruction and for intervention
  • Theory into practice

Participants are strongly encouraged to have the book, “Why Your Child Can’t Read and Spell and What YOU Can Do About It” by Sylvia Sinclaire, in either paper copy or ebook. Registrants should order the paper book at least 4 weeks prior to the session to ensure they receive it or order the ebook at any time.

Link to purchase book: Lulu Publishing (this is the only place to purchase the book (paperback or ebook)

  • $63.29 US$ paperback, including shipping & taxes
  • $37.49 US$ eBook, including taxes

NOTE: Attendees to all sessions will have the opportunity to complete an "Acknowledgement of Completion" exam that will identify the knowledge gained from this series.

This session addresses the LQS competencies

  • #2: Modeling Commitment to Professional Learning
  • #3: Embodying Visionary Leadership
  • #6: Providing Instructional Leadership

This session addresses the TQS competencies

  • #2: Engaging in Career-Long Learning
  • #3: Demonstrating a Professional Body of Knowledge
  • #4: Establishing Inclusive Learning Environments

This learning opportunity is being subsidized through funding from Alberta Education.

About the Facilitator

Sylvia Hannah Sinclaire began her educational career as a grade two teacher. In her first few weeks of teaching, she encountered students who struggled with reading and had difficulty remembering how to spell words. Sylvia began to research why this happens for some individuals. She has spent nearly fifty years thinking about and learning how to assist students to become proficient, accurate readers, spellers, and writers. Sylvia has taught in classroom, small group, and clinical settings, with students from five to fifty-five years. As well, she worked as a Reading Specialist/Consultant in a large Alberta school district assessing students’ literacy needs and designing appropriate interventions. Sylvia opened and was the director of private educational clinics in Edmonton and Victoria, B.C. She worked with the Learning Disabilities Association of Alberta assisting in the development of the “Reading Readiness Screening Tool” and in designing workshops and an online course using this tool for the identification of and intervention with children at-risk of reading difficulties in kindergarten and grade one. Sylvia is the author of the teaching manual “Why Your Child Can’t Read And Spell And What YOU Can Do About It” and decodable books entitled, “Phonemic Awareness and Sequencing (PAS) Stories”, which accompany the “Lindamood Phoneme Sequencing (LiPS) Program for Reading, Spelling, and Speech”.


Kelly has spent her educational career supporting students with a variety of needs and supporting staff building instructional strategies. She wanted to know more about how students learn and why they had difficulty back to school she went! As a teacher and a Reading Specialist, Kelly holds a Masters degree from the University of Alberta in the area of language and literacy development and specialized assessment. She built her knowledge of UDL through her work at the University of Manitoba. Her work as a Consultant supported teachers in building inclusive practice in all divisions. She has in-depth experience doing professional development, with a focus on instructional strategies and implementation of such strategies. She has taught pre-service teachers at the University of Alberta for the past year. Kelly's joy has been found in supporting staff in the use of research-based strategies that make teaching and learning intentional and meaningful.