What led Maureen to create Learning Ability started with a challenging experience with the youngest of her four children. After years of struggling to read, her son's confidence was decreasing and his teacher suggested that it was time for him to get a psych-ed assessment. She and her husband found the right professional and supported him through the testing process. The news they got back felt crushing. Their youngest child had dyslexia.
She was well aware that the school system, and the literacy level required to excel in it, is a large determinant of future success in both personal and professional life. Specialists explained to her that he would be able to go to special classes, due to his psychological label, and that he could begin using aids such as computers to get through the rest of his years in school. Even her son echoed his parents' disappointments about this option: “But, if I use that computer, I’ll never learn how to read and write for myself.” What continued to motivate her was his willingness to try new methods and her understanding of how much potential he had, as he was highly intelligent and had a social IQ well beyond his years.
Through her searching, she came across Ron Davis’ book “The Gift of Dyslexia”. She was pleased to find a method that explained the perspective that her son was not disabled, but different, specifically in his thinking style. Within the book, it discussed the unique mind of people with dyslexia and a new method of correcting its challenging side effects through the Davis Dyslexia Correction® Program that has been in practice for 20+ years around the world. She decided to try out this method and decided to enroll her son in a Davis program.
Before taking the program their son, who was in grade three, was reading at an SK reading level. By the end of the week, he was able to read more fluidly than he had ever experienced and comprehend at a much higher reading level. The tools he was given brought him both immediate and long term success. After the program, he was able to begin reading and writing independently. Within 6 months of starting the program the chore of doing nightly homework, which previously took hours, now became a routine that he did independently each night without the previous hours of struggling. As his schooling continued, he no longer experienced academics at a level behind his peers, and more than catching up to his peers he began to learn about his unique skills and worked to master them.
Today he has finished high school with honors and is now studying in a top business program at Laurier University. For his current term, he is studying abroad in Paris, France. It's not magic. It took working with an approach that connected with his thinking style so that he could succeed. It's amazing what can be accomplished when the right foundation is put into place.
Due to this success, and realizing the stress that a family feels in this situation, Maureen felt there was a need to share this gift with others. In 2005 Maureen began studying to become a licensed Davis Dyslexia Correction® Program facilitator and opened Learning Ability in 2007. She continued further studies and has since added Davis Autism® Facilitator to her qualifications. Her passion for this work comes from seeing the success it has given her son and others she had worked with. Seeing the change, confidence and hope it brings into their lives is what motivates her every day.