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Why We Work Here
If you have a child with learning issues, you know the drill. There’s a lot to fear — dyslexia, dyspraxia, ADHD, APD, SPD. And a lot of ways to spend money getting help.
Have you noticed though that most services are about managing or defining the problem, not trying to solve it? The advice is either get tested or accomodate — tutor, medicate, extra help in school, counsel, homeschool.
You can pay for an evaluation or to get a tutor in for a few sessions. But then what? Nothing really changes.
Changing the Narrative
You have probably seen articles about brain plasticity. The brain is not hard-wired as was once thought.
The brain is a living organ, like muscle, that will respond to exercise. And really, that explains a lot. Think about stroke victims. Even when the majority of brain cells are killed, many relearn lost skills – using new brain cells. Their brain reorganizes.
And so, if the brain can change, then learning can change, right?
That’s the idea behind Gemm Learning. Could we find trusted programs that address the source of learning difficulties and adapt them to home use?
Finding Programs We Could Trust
It turns out there are a few programs that interact with deep-seated learning difficulties and can make a difference, but most suit in-center use — making them expensive and time-consuming for parents — or they are not focused on language and reading, our area of interest.
One exception is Fast ForWord. It is industrial strength cognitive and reading software that is the real deal. And it has a way of tracking activity remotely as if the monitor is in the room.
Moreover, there were lots of studies to back it up and the success stories we heard were amazing. Not to mention, our founder’s son also made significant gains using Fast ForWord, where nothing else worked.
From there we built a wrap-around individualized service — staffed by educators — that is second to none to manage the home experience. That was in 2006 and we are still going strong, now having helped thousands of families in the US and Canada.
Dealing with learning difficulties is not easy, and we are not always effective. But with every new student our goal is not incremental, although sometimes that is what happens. No, our goal is bolder — to make a significant difference, to change lives.
There is nothing better than the steady stream of notes we receive from parents about the changes they are seeing in their children’s lives. A worry lifted, new opportunities now attainable. These success stories are what get us up in the morning.
That’s why we work here!
We are based in Westport, CT. Everyone in Gemm Learning is either an educator or has a child who had learning difficulties. Our service staff are educators who have seen the limits of instruction and tutoring first-hand, and so love being able to offer a new window of opportunity to struggling learners. Their insight into activity at home involves them in a personal way that leads to great outcomes.
Gemm Learning was founded by Geoff Nixon, whose 7-year-old son, Matthew, did Fast ForWord. About halfway through, Matthew’s vocabulary exploded. He was more able to follow directions, became more talkative and finally started reading, a wonderful development for a child who had made minimal progress in the prior 2-3 years.
G.E.M.M. represents the family initials, a personal name reflecting the personal story behind Gemm.