New program allows for parents to choose child's curriculum - WOWK 13 Charleston, Huntington WV News, Weather, Sports

New program allows for parents to choose child's curriculum

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When listening to 9-year-old Nila Thompson read, it's hard to believe that just a little over a year ago she struggled to make it through a book. 

"My youngest daughter is very severely dyslexic, and she got very depressed, so we got desperate and looked for alternative ways and methods for treating this dyslexia." said Shanna Thompson. 

After making one of the hardest decisions of their lives, Shanna and her two daughters moved to Virginia so they could enroll in something called the Arrowsmith Program. 

Instead of working around specific learning difficulties like dyslexia, the Arrowsmith Program teaches kids how to overcome their struggles with cognitive training.

Nila said it helped her feel more confident in class.

"Whenever I was in school I had to ask the teacher not to ask me to read anything because I couldn't read it, and now I can read it if they ask me to read it and that makes me really happy." said Nila. 

After seeing both of her daughters succeed, Shanna decided to bring the Arrowsmith Program to the Charleston Montessori School.

The curriculum is customized for each individual student and composed of lessons very different from your average classroom. 

By teaching lessons that apply to certain cognitive areas of the brain, students can strengthen their own individual academic weaknesses.

The programs annual cost for students at Charleston Montessori is about $6,000 and $9,000 for students outside of the school.

"It is expensive, but sometime you just can't afford not to do it because it makes such a big difference." said Shanna Thompson. 

Shanna is currently going through training and is anxious to help other children in the area just like her daughters.

Both Nila and Zosza agree that learning the Arrowsmith way has allowed them to grow without the stress of a regular classroom setting. 

"You don't have to worry about being where your grade is and you don't have to worry about good grades in general. You just have to worry about fixing yourself." said Zosza Thompson, Shanna's oldest daughter. 

If interested in donating to the Arrowsmith program in the Charleston, WV area, please contact the Charleston Montessori School at 304-340-9000. 

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