"Until I met you, I'd never read a book all the way through.  Now I read sometimes 2 or 3 a week.  The way you taught me to read has really changed my life."  Rick A., Investment Banker

When you learn to read effectively and efficiently, you’ll read quickly.

We train students in two (2) basic techniques:

  • Phrase Reading: This technique increases reading rate by 100%, 200% or more, and improves comprehension and retention in everything, often to astonishing degrees 
  • Space-Reading and Scanning Techniques: Designed to read material at 1000 wpm (words per minute) or more.  Most useful for students and professionals 

Reading Problems and Reading Strategies

Reading is, at heart, our ability to take in information and understand patterns, whether in language, or math, or music, or in any of an infinite number of human pursuits. If we read well, we can understand where we are on a trip (reading a map), or how we fit into a situation (reading a room) or see a clear path to the hole (reading the green). 

 Of course, a lot of people mark the time they learned to read from when they could sound out words – but that skill is, more properly, decoding.  Decoding words is what we do when we are first introduced to an alphabet and discover how letters form patterns and words. Reading is what we do when we are constructing meaning.

Reading is what we do when we are constructing meaning.

Or, to bring this more into the realm of the brain and mind, decoding is what we do with the left side of the brain; following ideas is what we do with the right.

To use a computer-processing analogy, we might think of the left side of the brain as a serial processor: it handles one thing at a time, and moves on to the next thing to handle.  It can do this blindingly fast, one thing at a time – and was the star of the show when we were first learning how to read. 

But when it comes time to seeing how things work together, how they ‘fit’ together, it’s the parallel processing of the right hemisphere that brings patterns into view.  While the left hemisphere tends to do a lot of the heavy lifting in detail work, the right hemisphere brings us the light of understanding.  The right side of the brain gives us the experience of fluency; it gives us wordless comprehension at the heart of effective reading.

 That’s not to say that you can’t learn to read faster and perhaps better by staying in the left hemispheres lane on your neural highway, but that nearly every “speed-reading” tactic is bounded by the same speed limit.   At some point (around 300 words a minute), our ability to focus and process from one word to the next breaks down. 

Trying to move our eyes more quickly, we inevitably trip our way through paragraphs and skip words.  Maybe we’ve tried using our finger to pace our reading, like we’ve seen people do on TV when they speed-read.  We keep our attention moving, but we end up missing so much that it’s largely a waste of effort – even if we have our eyes open for ‘important’ or ‘key’ words.

None of these ‘techniques’ do too much good, because they’re rooted in the same basic difficulty: we’re just trying to decode faster!

The real trick – and the evolution in reading – is making the shift to fluency.  To the RIGHT side of the brain.