SOI News

SOI National Workshop Highlights 2016

I thoroughly enjoyed attending the SOI National Workshop in Lubbock in January 2016. Whenever or wherever I hear Diane Hochstein speak, I always hear little sayings or quotes that are amazing and sometimes life-changing. I used to attend workshops and listen intently without writing down these “gems.” I finally learned at this workshop to write these quotes down so I could remember them forever. This year we also had the privilege of learning from the experience of Dylan Fitzpatrick.

First, I want to share with you Dylan’s beliefs: there are no bad children; work with children because they are gifts; no act is wasted with a child because you made a connection, an ounce of action is worth a ton of theory; and a person has to be ready for success.

SOI gives an individual three things:

  • Autonomy: solve problems on our own without reward.
  • Mastery: fulfillment of “I did it!”
  • Purpose in our life: we have goals, and there is a realization that there is something bigger than ourselves.

To empower means to have the resources to draw on from their own personal experiences. There is no greater gift than to empower someone.

And here are the gems of wisdom from Diane: Continue reading “SOI National Workshop Highlights 2016”

SOI News

A Look Back at 2015

Wow! What a year it’s been for us here at SOI! Last week we celebrated one year in our new office location. We love our new space, and are enjoying the convenience and functionality that have come along with it. If you haven’t been able to see it yet, we hope that you’re able to visit soon!

While our big move has been the highlight of our year, lots of other exciting things have happened Continue reading “A Look Back at 2015”

SOI News

SOI Top Sellers!

SOI’s ability to develop learning abilities is what makes us stand out! Take a look at our list of top-selling SOI products and programs.

Find out what they are and why they’re so popular. Keep in mind that they can all be used in both schools and clinics.

Basic Reader: Basic Reader is designed for elementary-aged students who are struggling with reading. The program addresses three common causes: students do not have the necessary perceptual skills, students are not ready cognitively, or the teaching method doesn’t match the student’s learning style. Basic Reader is an easy-to-use, all-in-one program that includes screening, testing, and student materials to address all three causes of reading difficulties.

Memory Matrix: Memory is one of the easiest learning abilities to train, so it’s a great ability to work on with all of your students. You will begin to see improvement with 15 minutes of daily memory training. The Memory Matrix program contains 13 different visual and auditory exercises that help with reading, math, language arts, and more. Figural, symbolic, and semantic abilities are all trained in exercises that vary in levels of difficulty.

Personalized Workbooks and CDs: SOI is one of the easiest and most effective ways to improve learning abilities. Every personalized workbook and CD is designed specifically to target each student’s learning needs – the abilities that will benefit the student the most. Low and average abilities are improved and high abilities are enhanced. Each student must take an SOI learning abilities test in order to determine what abilities are in need of improvement.

Certified Learning: Certified Learning teaches young students the intellectual abilities needed for academic success. The program allows students to work at their own pace in three different learning centers: computer, workbook, and group. One of our Certified Learning teachers said it best, “In my opinion, the Certified Learning program is fantastic at filling in the gaps that kids have. This is my 20th year as an educator, and I have seen nothing that does it better.”

IPP: IPP is a program for addressing learning difficulties. It addresses visual, auditory, and sensory-motor skills through a series of exercises customized to meet every student’s needs. Each student gets to work on building skills that are essential to the learning process. This program is successful because it tackles the causes of the learning difficulties!

SOI News

SOI Advanced & Associate Workshop Review

We are excited to have completed another Advanced and Associate workshop. We are grateful to the SOI practitioners who were able to participate – many for the first time!

We kicked off the workshop by introducing our newest products:

  • Vision: Focusing Skills workbook
  • Math Motivation workbook
  • Reading Right workbook
  • Inspire Creativity workbook
  • new SOI modules
  • new SOI brochures

Dr. Robert Meeker discussed our ALA & PLA tests, Diane Hochstein presented the Meeker Paradigm, and several guest speakers shared their SOI successes from around the country!

The highlight of the workshop was Dr. Meeker’s presentation: Public Education in the United States. He addressed the current state of education in our country, and the reasons why our system has deteriorated from an A to a C- over the past 60 years.

“Today, we are left with a school system that is frustrated and confused. The school community is frustrated because, although the deterioration is widely acknowledged, there is no consensus on how it should be changed.”

Not only did Dr. Meeker address the current problem, but he presented the most efficient, direct, and economical way to deal with the failure at hand.

“Redesign the system to deal with the failures occurring in the extant operations.”

To read the full article, click here.

SOI News

Q & A Series II

Basic Information

Name: Laura Mayer

Center: The Learning Turtle

Title: Owner/Tutor

Location: Washington DC Metro Area: Central Maryland, DC, and Northern Virginia

Number of years using SOI: 9

Why did you decide to start using SOI?

I was trained in testing SOI and implementing the modules when I worked for a learning center early in my career in education.   I was fascinated by the simple-yet-effective method. Later, as a teacher in a public, suburban high school, I saw the majority of students struggle with the standard curriculum. Accommodations, “pull outs,” during-school homework/help time, and medication all seemed to be quick, temporary fixes (albeit with good intentions). I started testing my own students with SOI and tutoring them several days a week after school. Then I decided to make it my full time job!

Tell us a little bit about how you incorporate SOI into your clinic.

I describe The Learning Turtle as a “holistic tutoring company” because we look for the cause of academic challenges using a variety of perspectives. However, SOI is our cornerstone method. We build cognitive skills in conjunction with academic skills (which are the sole focus of “typical tutoring”). For instance, our SAT prep students work on math problems, reading comprehension, vocabulary, and test-taking strategies (which are all a part of a typical SAT course), but we also focus on visual processing, verbal processing, spatial reasoning, evaluation, etc. (which are the foundational skills that support the former).

Our greater vision, however, is to teach SOI to educators. Therefore, we are also a “tutor training company” that wants to prepare an army of tutors to help struggling students everywhere, but we’ll settle with working in the DC Metro area first!

What is the biggest benefit of SOI?

My specialty in education is the English language; specifically, I taught remedial reading for several years using another researched-based methodology. I did see it help some students, but not many. I still felt something unspoken was amiss.

While teaching that course, I saw the widest range of abilities per class I had ever encountered in my career: ESOL, Special Education, 9-12th graders, reading abilities from 2nd to 8th grade all “under the same ceiling.” Even with a co-teacher and assistants, it was challenging to meet every student at his/her needs AND help raise them to meet the same expectation or curriculum. We all felt like we were being pulled in several directions at once to help these students.

I realized that using SOI enabled all my students to have the same chance at success. It “levels the playing field,” so that Continue reading “Q & A Series II”

SOI News

Our First Q & A Blog Post

We are excited to be starting a new series of question and answer blog posts featuring those who use SOI from around the world! Continue to follow the blog to hear from more SOI teachers, practitioners, and specialists!

Basic Information

Name: Anupma Sethi

Center: EmpowerKidz Learning Center

Title: Founder & Executive Director

Location: Noida, National Capital Region New Delhi, India

Number of years using SOI: 5

Why did you decide to start using SOI?

I decided to use SOI programs to assess, analyze, and try to get answers as to why the students struggle so we can try to build the foundational skills essential for academic and school learning.

Which SOI product or program do you use the most? Why?

I use personalized learning workbooks, computer modules, ALA and PLA assessments, and the Certified Learning program in our practice. Since we are working in an after school program and students in mixed age groups are coming to us, we use the personal workbooks and computer modules. We also get young students with whom we cannot do any kind of formal assessments, so we use the Certified Learning program.

At our center we also have a complete IPP lab where students are doing exercises along with workbooks and computer modules. We do group exercises, Mini IPP, and personalized IPP programs.

Tell us a little bit about how you incorporate SOI into your clinic.

Typically, students are coming to us for one-on-one sessions in the after school environment at our clinic. Once we do our initial assessment using the ALA/PLA, we start personalized workbook along with computer modules. If needed, we will do an IPP assessment, and start the IPP program also. Students come to us at least three times in a week for a one-hour session. As we start the SOI programs, we do educational assessments to find out their reading, spelling, and comprehension levels to begin our educational programs with the students. The goal is to bridge the gap between their present level of functioning and where they should be according to their age and grade.

We might have to use some informal or formal assessment depending on the need and requirements at the school. The students will start to work with us on SOI systems program. Gradually we will introduce educational intervention using multi-sensory teaching programs to make it comprehensive. We are trying to make a combination of SOI systems program and educational intervention to make it a complete package for students. It makes more sense to us as they are building the foundational skills to respond better to the educational interventions using multi-sensory skills.

What is the biggest difference you have seen in your clients/students using SOI? Continue reading “Our First Q & A Blog Post”

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Building a Real Student Support Team


What if you were able to…

  • anticipate, identify, and intervene with ninety percent of your “at-risk” students in kindergarten or first grade
  • help eliminate students’ self-esteem issues related to failure in school
  • bypass reliance on the observations of overextended classroom teachers for most intervention referrals
  • develop an individual and developmentally appropriate plan to effectively intervene with students by the first semester of kindergarten
  • develop an efficient, systematic, easily documentable Student Support Team/RTI procedure for teachers as well as students
  • significantly reduce your Special Education referrals and greatly reduce the number of non-qualifying referrals

What do schools need besides money?

More important than money, they need the information to make good decisions. We have an education system that demands more of young children than they can deliver developmentally.

The system is demanding academic skills that are not accessible to a child until their motor sensory, visual, and cognitive skills are in place.

Our frenetic lifestyles, work schedules, and testing agendas rob our children of appropriate early learning experiences both cognitively and physically. As a result, we are labeling some students with learning disabilities that, given the right interventions, might never cross the threshold into Special Education.

Teachers are frustrated and dismayed because at least twenty-five percent of their students are not able to do what they are asked academically. They come to a Student Support Team meeting with their concerns. “Student can’t read, can’t spell, can’t do math, and can’t pay attention.” What are we to do? How can the student go to the next grade level without the requisite skills in place? How will they ever pass the standardized tests? Continue reading “Building a Real Student Support Team”