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Meet the Teacher

Hello, I am Debbie Borgfeld, the teacher behind Reading Help for Kids.  I am excited to be offering my teaching and tutoring services both locally and virtually.  I am a veteran teacher with classroom experience in first, second, third, and fourth grade.  I have spent the last 27 years teaching private preschool, public school, and homeschooling my own daughter.  My certifications include pre k-6th grade general ed, all-level SPED, and ESL.  I have successfully completed the Texas Reading Academy for teachers K-3 and I am currently being trained in LETRS.  Contact me to ask a question or find out more information about my teaching and tutoring services.


I will be happy to answer any questions you may have about the teaching/tutoring services I offer or answer any questions you may have about how best to help your child with reading at home.

Does my child need tutoring?

Learning to talk is natural, learning to walk is natural, but learning to read must be taught.  We are born with the natural ability to learn to communicate with those around us as well as learn to walk on our own.  Our brains, however, are not prewired naturally to learn to read.  Reading is a learned skill.  For most children, learning to read seems like it does come naturally, as if they were actually born with the innate skill to pick up a book and go.  This is because what they get in the classroom is enough for them.  For others though, it takes a little more time to crack the reading code.  With the right instruction and adequate practice, 95% of kids can learn how to read at grade level.  The problem that we see for most struggling readers is that the reading instruction provided to them may not be enough, may not be the right kind, or adequate time to practice may not be given.

This is where tutoring comes in.  With the right kind of instruction and adequate practice, most struggling readers can learn to read.  It just takes research-based instruction in learning how to read and enough time to learn the skills to crack the code and make reading stick.  Reading Help for Kids provides research-based instruction to all tutoring students.  We differentiate to meet your child where he/she is at, and all skills are taught to mastery.  Is tutoring a quick fix?  No.  Is it a one time session that closes gaps immediately?  No.  It is an intervention to find the reading gaps, help to close them, and move your child forward to reading on level.  Tutoring is an investment in your child's education and future.  Without closing the gaps in the early years, the gaps only become bigger as the child gets older.   

How do I teach kids to read?

All of the teaching methods I use are based on the Science of Reading.  This means that how I teach kids to read and spell is all researched-based.  There are no fun tricks or temporary strategies taught to put a bandaid on a reading gap.  Temporary fixes that promote guessing do not fix the gaps that are causing the child to guess in the first place.  The Science of Reading focuses on the systematic and explicit instruction in the five areas of reading: phonemic awareness, phonics, fluency, vocabulary, and comprehension.  These skills build on one another and if there are gaps in one, the next will be affected.  In other words, a child cannot read with fluency without having a strong phonemic awareness and phonics skills base.  Until the gaps are found and work is being done to close them, a reader will not progress in the latter skills as he/she should.  Readers cannot comprehend what they cannot read.  

What is the Science of Reading?

The Science of Reading is a structured literacy approach to teaching reading based on research-based best practices.

"The National Reading Panel (NRP) report in 2000 identified these five elements that are key to reading success:

  • Comprehension

  • Fluency

  • Vocabulary

  • Phonics

  • Phonemic Awareness"


What is the Simple View of Reading?

The Simple View of Reading is "a formula demonstrating the widely accepted view that reading has two basic components: word recognition (decoding) and language comprehension. Research studies show that a student’s reading comprehension score can be predicted if decoding skills and language comprehension abilities are known."-

word recognition (decoding) + language comprehension = reading comprehension

One without the other = difficulty comprehending text

What is LETRS?

LETRS is a high quality researched-based professional development for K-3 teachers of reading and spelling.  In fact, LETRS stands for Language Essentials for Teachers of Reading and Spelling.  "It provides in-depth knowledge on the most current research regarding the what, when, and how language skills need to be taught; teaches how to assess student language development for both prevention and intervention; provides the how-to on planning and balancing word recognition and comprehension instruction; and it supports differentiation of instruction to meet the needs of all students no matter where they are on the learning continuum."  -

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