Proud readers. Ecstatic parents. Impressed educators.
JT’s StoryUntethered is the story of JT Mestdagh, a young man born with a death sentence and who is now an entrepreneur and adventurer on a mission to empower people to UNTETHER from limiting beliefs and to soar to their highest dreams. Diagnosed with a life-threatening syndrome calledVATER/VACTERL, Mestdagh endured 250 days in hospitals before age 3 and 16 major surgeries before age 16. As soon as doctors discovered one condition and treated it, a new and worse one would pop up. On top of that, Mestdagh has such severe dyslexia and short-term memory loss that his school told him in fourth grade that he would be illiterate for life. Along with years of medical treatments and nonstop home care, his parents relentlessly hunted for the right program to help Mestdagh learn to read. Nothing worked until in fifth grade when an encounter with Steve Tattum and his unique reading program that changed Mestdagh’s life forever. JT’s story is a lot about JT’s grit and determination. But it is also a story about how the right reading program can change lives. Many emerging readers (and their parents!) will be able to relate to JT’s description of what it was like to learn to read–what worked and what didn’t. And how Steve Tattum’s reading program changed everything. Read Untethered.
Watch Nate become a lifelong readerEven as a high school graduate, 21-year old Nate was a non-reader. In less than 60 hours, Nate increased his reading to the 6th-grade level.
Watch Kevin transform his reading.As a 5th grader, Kevin was reading at low Kindergarten grade level when he enrolled in LearnUp. At school, Kevin was struggling to keep up with his classes and was unable to read even the most basic text. In less than 3 months of tutoring at LearnUp, Kevin went from a non-Reader to a reader.
Susan’s LearnUp StoryA 66-year old with a traumatic brain injury re-learns how to read. “When we first looked into support programs, there were no resources to help my wife relearn how to read. LearnUp has been a godsend.” Carl, Susan’s husband tells the story… Read more:
Naomi’s LearnUp Story
A 5th grader goes from K-level to grade-level reader in 5 months of tutoring.
“LearnUp has been nothing but the best thing that happened to mine and my daughter Naomi’s life.” Anna, Naomi’s mom tells the story… Read more:
What do LearnUp students say?
“I like it because it makes me happy. I can read bigger words. And can read by myself.”
“I feel more confident at school.”
“Now, I kinda like reading.”
“I like the stories, they aren’t boring like my program at school.”
“This program has really helped me.”LearnUp student, “Am I going to be here when I am a teenager?” LearnUp tutor, “No you will be reading fluently way before then. Why?” LearnUp student, “I like being here. I learned to read to read here and it’s fun.”
What are educators saying?
Educator, Grace Rinaldi
Mel Nichols, Tutorcorps
What are parents saying?
Pha-Pha Hamilton, Parent“LearnUp is WONDERFUL and it works!!! We were SO happy to find LearnUp and THRILLED with the results for our child. I am a former elementary school teacher and have been trained in Lindamood-Bell (LMB), and other literacy programs. I did not feel good about the intervention my child was getting at his school (a top-tier public school) and I determined working with him by myself would be ineffective for a number of reasons. I started to do some research and picked LearnUp based on what seemed like a balanced program. Steve Tattum has decades of experience with kids with learning differences and has been trained in all kinds of literacy intervention programs; his program takes the ‘best practices’ from other programs and creates a well-rounded, effective reading program. I felt that other programs such as LMB were too rigid/ formulaic. I’m so glad we enrolled our child at LearnUp as both his reading skills and confidence grew tremendously as a result. Another big factor was that LearnUp was less expensive than similar programs. Additionally, my child loved being trained by a highly skilled college student. The LearnUp Instructional tutors are regularly monitored and coached. Our tutor was mature and knowledgeable, but also fun –my child loved coming to work with her. The materials were also interesting and age appropriate. Our child’s confidence grew lots and he went from reading at kinder level to middle of second grade (based on Fountas & Pinnell). I know these kinds of programs are a big financial and time commitment no matter where you go, but I think you actually pay less for more at LearnUp. Also, I urge any parent to get their kiddo help before it’s too late; early intervention is important and individual and intensive (5x a week) support is most effective. There’s no substitute for this kind of early one-on-one instruction and it’s not worth it to “wait and see.” “
Parent, Diane DallasKidd“Our daughter grasped LearnUp’s reading concepts quickly. She made noticeable improvements within 10 hours of instruction. This was a great relief to us as the helpless feeling of waiting for the reading to “click” was over. LearnUp did a reading assessment, targeted problem areas and drafted out a plan with a time frame. Before LearnUp, our daughter would stumble through almost every sentence in a book at her grade level. She gave up on sounding out multi-syllable words and skipped words. Needless to say, this affected her comprehension and affected her learning in other subjects. She now reads with confidence and expression. Her 3rd-grade teacher has commented on the great strides made. Well worth the 3 intensive months at LearnUp.”
Parent, Anna Jackson“LearnUp has been nothing but the best thing that happened to mine and my daughter, Naomi’s life. I have struggled for years to get help with her reading. I’d try one program and then get sent to another being told she will some how get it. I finally found LearnUp through her new school. Naomi was in 5th grade and she was reading at an early Kinder level. She was doing very bad in school and had very low self-esteem. She didn’t want to try and gave up easily. It was extremely difficult for her as well as me because I saw the worst part, her crying, frustrated, struggling, and suffering. We came to LearnUp and met with Steve Tattum. I want to admit I was a bit skeptical after going through everything we’ve gone through. I had to give it a chance. Anything for my daughter, and I finally brought her to LearnUp. The first day I brought her and picked her up after 1 hour of tutoring, she was reading words all by herself. I was so happy I cried. For the first time Naomi felt good and proud that she could read. She explained to me she knows how to read but the problem was she had to teach her brain. I laughed. She felt like she really could read. I kept bringing her and after 1 month she was up from A level to an F level in reading. Naomi has only gotten better, not only in reading but at school with all her academics. She has so much confidence that she has begun doing school work on her own. She is happy to do classwork in class as much as homework at home. How I wish I knew about LearnUp sooner. If there is a reading program that actually works it definitely is Learn Up. All I have to say to all those parents and teachers with children and students struggling to read: this is it! Don’t wait any longer please get started today.”
Parent, Tatiana O’Donoghue
Parent, Davide Pacchini“Fantastic program. My son has learned to read and was struggling before. Highly recommended. “
Parent, Liz Schiedl
Parent, Lia McLoughlin
Parent, Mary Flynn“Learn up centers is amazing. My 10-year-old started the program at a 2nd-grade reading level. To our amazement, he ended 7 weeks later at a fourth-grade level where he should be but more importantly with a love of reading. For the first time ever we have seen him pick up a book and read without being asked to do it. The tutors are patient and kind and find a way to connect with the kids they tutor. My son loved seeing his tutor and never complained about going there. We immediately saw a change in his home and school work. Learn up gave my son back his confidence and I highly recommend it for any struggling reader.”
Parent, Dawn Gross, MD, PhD
“LearnUp is a miracle! Not only has our child learned to read when all other efforts were just that, EFFORT. Our child now ENJOYS reading… can’t put the book down on the way to school… asks to read to us and looks forward to going to tutoring even after a full day of school! Truly, nothing short of a miracle….”