Frequently Asked Questions

Below you will find the answers I get most about online tutoring:

Just click on the toggle button to expand the section. If I have not answered all your questions here, please contact me using my form, email, or phone.

Teacher Justine trained with the expert Reading Specialist, Joanne Kaminski. Justine follows Joanne’s proven Close the Gap program with these steps:

  1. First, Justine starts with listening to your child read to find out where the gaps are.
  2. Then she chats with you and lets you know what she is noticing.
  3. Third, she comes up with a customized plan for your child that will close the gap quickly for him or her.  And then she meets with your child weekly.

Every 3 months Justine reassesses your child to find out what gains your child has made. Then she changes the instruction to continue to close the gap.

Signs of Dyslexia in Preschool

  • May talk later than most children
  • May have difficulty pronouncing words, i.e., busgetti for spaghetti, mawn lower for lawn mower
  • May be slow to add new vocabulary words
  • May be unable to recall the right word
  • May have difficulty with rhyming
  • May have trouble learning the alphabet, numbers, days of the week, colors, shapes, how to spell and write his or her name
  • May have trouble interacting with peers
  • May be unable to follow multi-step directions or routines
  • Fine motor skills may develop more slowly than in other children
  • May have difficulty telling and/or retelling a story in the correct sequence

Signs of Dyslexia in Kindergarten through fourth grade

  • Has difficulty decoding single words (reading single words in isolation)
  • May be slow to learn the connection between letters and sounds
  • May confuse small words – at/to, said/and, does/goes
  • Makes consistent reading and spelling errors including:
    • Letter reversals – d for b as in, dog for bog
    • Word reversals – tip for pit
    • Inversions – m and w, u and n
    • Transpositions – felt and left
    • Substitutions – house and home
  • May transpose number sequences and confuse arithmetic signs (+ – x / =)
  • May have trouble remembering facts
  • May be slow to learn new skills; relies heavily on memorizing without understanding
  • May be impulsive and prone to accidents
  • May have difficulty planning
  • Often uses an awkward pencil grip (fist, thumb hooked over fingers, etc.)
  • May have trouble learning to tell time
  • May have poor fine motor coordination

Difficulty with reading

  • Difficulty learning to read
  • Difficulty identifying or generating rhyming words or counting syllables in words (Phonological Awareness)
  • Difficulty with hearing and manipulating sounds in words (Phonemic Awareness)
  • Difficulty distinguishing different sounds in words (Auditory Discrimination)
  • Difficulty in learning the sounds of letters
  • Difficulty remembering names and/or the order of letters when reading
  • Reverses letters or the order of letters when reading
  • Misreads or omits common little words
  • “Stumbles” through longer words
  • Poor reading comprehension during oral or silent reading

Difficulty with written language

  • Difficulty putting ideas on paper
  • Many spelling mistakes
  • May do well on weekly spelling tests, but there are many spelling mistakes in daily work
  • Difficulty in proofreading

Difficulty with oral language

  • Late in learning to talk
  • Difficulty pronouncing words
  • Difficulty acquiring vocabulary or using age-appropriate grammar
  • Difficulty following directions
  • Confusion with before/after, right/left, and so on
  • Difficulty learning the alphabet, nursery rhymes, or songs
  • Difficulty understanding concepts and relationships


Also, check out my Blog – Teacher Justine. I think and write about dyslexia frequently.

Yes, I do in-person tutoring for students in grades k-2 if desired.

When young students live by me they have the option of doing tutoring online or at the Lafayette Public Library.

My priority lies in what is best for each individual child.

Yes, I offer summer tutoring.

I work all year long and work hard to tailor a summer reading program specifically for your child.

Summer is the time of year where kids will suffer from summer reading loss if they are not consistently reading.

It is important to me that my students do not miss out on this opportune time to close the gap and be secure in reading for the following school year.

This is why I have created and stay committed to a strong summer reading program.

How long are tutoring sessions depends on these factors:

1.       Child’s age
2.       Child’s attention span
3.       Schedule

Some children in Kindergarten to 2nd grade work best In 30-minute sessions.

For kids in 3rd grade on up more can be accomplished in a 60-minute class.

Some kids who are in 3rd through 6th grade and have ADHD do better with 30-minute sessions than a full-hour session.

Sometimes, the students’ schedules and my schedule have unique needs that determine whether a 30 minute or a 60-minute session would be better.

How long your child will need tutoring varies and is based on these factors:

1.       Learning speed
2.       Dyslexia
3.       Consistency

My goal is to close a 12-month reading gap with only 12 hours of instruction.

So if your child is two years behind and you schedule one-hour sessions each week, your child will be at grade level in six months.  If you choose to do two hours of tutoring a week, then it will take only three months.

This schedule varies if your child has dyslexia because it depends on the severity of the dyslexia which can range from mild to severe.

Other factors which can affect quick progress is learning speed.  Some kids just need more repetition than others.

In these cases it may take a bit longer, but not too much.

Another factor is consistency.

Sometimes life gets in the way of students being able to show up for their tutoring sessions.

If students miss too many sessions, then it becomes harder to close the gap.

The more consistent we both are, the better results your child gets.

My tutoring rates are $70 per hour.

  • My credentials and experience have shown that this is a very reasonable rate to charge.
  • I am able to find out what areas your child struggles with and close the gap in that area.
  • If you are looking for the quickest and most effective solution available with a top-notch certified teacher, I am the best option.

Language and Literacy Teacher

I’m a language and literacy teacher that started tutoring kids online after we had to teach online because of the pandemic. I noticed that when I taught one-on-one during my office hours, amazing things happened. Kids who couldn’t focus in a large group at school or on Zoom, suddenly could during one-on-one sessions and they thrived.

When the private school I worked at began opening up again in person, I no longer wanted to do the hour-long commute to San Francisco twice a day. And I had 2 children at home who were still in distance learning. I did not want to leave them alone.

Online one-on-one services

Once I discovered tutoring reading online as an online reading tutor, I found that I was able to close the gap quickly with my One-on-One Services and I really enjoyed working with kids from all over the world.

Additionally, online tutoring is so convenient for the kids and the parents. You don’t have to drive them across town. The kids are used to working on Zoom. You can easily schedule one hour or two 30-minute sessions a week with little impact to your busy schedule. And I love it because I am still there for my own children.