Read what people are saying about Darlene and the Reading Spelling Connection.

Darlene Larson, in our family’s eyes, is an angel that was sent our way to help our son. Our son could hardly read or write and within 3 months of working with Darlene, he was writing and knew his entire alphabet! It has now been a year of tutoring, and honestly, I am amazed at the change! He can now read, write, and has started feeling more confident in his studies! Not only has she worked with his reading/spelling, she has guided us in ways to help him out as well! She is a true miracle to our family!


Darlene Larson has taken our profoundly dyslexic son from hopelessness to a grade level pleasure reader.

Thinking homeschooling was going to be a great adventure to share with our children, I excitedly began our educational journey with our oldest son. It quickly became apparent that this was not going to be an easy task as I observed our son becoming highly stressed and tearful as he struggled to grasp even the most basic reading concepts. Finally, toward the end of his second grade year, Darlene Larson was referred to us and we couldn’t be more thankful for the blessing she has been.

Our son’s dyslexia was profound and he proved to be the most severely dyslexic student Mrs. Larson had encountered. When tutoring began our son was unable, as a second grader, to fluently read words as basic as C-A-T. Using various strategies ranging from the Barton system to homemade learning games, and with her knowledge and gentle encouragement, Mrs. Larson tenderly guided our son to a place we never dreamed was possible. We were told by professionals that our goal should be to get him functional in society and to a place where he was advanced enough to use technology to assist him. With Mrs. Larson’s direction and to our great excitement, he has now completed his tutoring and reads for pleasure and at grade level!

Mrs. Larson has not only guided him to read, but she has become a special and influential role model in his life. She has extended her giftedness to our family and given us all renewed hope.


Our son began tutoring with Darlene in second grade and it has made a world of difference.  He went from falling behind in school, to, now in 4th grade, reading at or above grade level. Our son, himself, realizes that he owes much of his success in school to the tutoring he has done with Darlene.  To make the tutoring more fun, Darlene created and incorporated games into many of the lessons, which helped our son become more engaged in the sessions. Darlene genuinely cares about her students and is easy to work with and the flexibility of the online tutoring has allowed us to work around our family’s busy schedule.

Scott and Paula

I will be forever grateful for the instruction my daughter, Evelyn, has received from Darlene. Her expertise as a Barton instructor has completely changed the trajectory of my daughter’s educational path. Evelyn has learned rules and strategies that she is able to apply to her learning every day, making her a stronger student. She is more confident and willing to take risks, even when something is challenging for her. Evelyn is much more successful in all areas of reading and writing, and completing this program has set Evelyn up for a promising future. 


Darlene tutored our daughter years ago, when she was in 5th and 6th grades. Emma is now in college and is thriving in her new environment. I’ve never seen her happier or more confident. Darlene’s tutoring played such an important part of her development into a confident, self-assured young woman. Darlene not only helped our daughter overcome her reading and spelling challenges, she helped her develop a mindset that saw her dyslexia as a gift instead of a something that was “wrong” with her. Our daughter has found the inspiration and root of her artistic abilities and felt special that her brain worked just a little differently than other people. If we hadn’t taken the time and made the investment to work with Darlene, I think Emma’s outcome would have been very different. Instead of diminishing, she expanded. It was worth every single minute and every single penny to see our daughter so capable and happy.


Having to go to tutoring sessions…who knew it could be fun?

I am a nurse, and I accompany my client to tutoring sessions with Darlene Larson at The Reading Spelling Connection. My client has dyslexia as well speech issues which can make her hard to hear or understand. Reading was not on her list of favorite things to do.

Darlene has an awesome ability to keep this child on task, which is no small accomplishment. She does not allow my client to wander too far off topic during lessons, but shows interest in what the client has to say at the appropriate times. Mrs. Larson finds incentives for the student that will encourage her to work hard and do her best.

Scheduling can be an issue at times due to weather, illness, or appointments. I really appreciate that Darlene can be flexible, modifying times and dates as needed to continue my client’s growth.

Darlene is an excellent tutor, using Barton’s system in a most animated and entertaining (for me also) way. It is hard to not get excited about learning spelling rules, like the” Catch Lunch” rule, or words that are “Weirdos”. I wish I could videotape a session to share with others that are looking for a tutor- to watch her in action would show the teacher/student interaction better than I could explain it. “Connection” is in more than the Reading and Spelling. My client is quite engaged during most of her sessions.

My client has grown by leaps and bounds in her reading and spelling ability in the few months she’s been tutored. My client is in third grade with a reading level in the first grade level at the beginning of the year. Now, 3/4 of the school year in, I see her reading material at the late second grade to early third grade level and understanding it!

I would recommend Darlene Larson to anyone looking for a tutor!

Connie, RN

If you have had tears of frustration, bouts of anger, and heard statements such as “why am I so stupid” then this tutoring expert for Dyslexia is for you. Our tears, from both student and parents, rapidly turned into joy for the learning process and self-confidence at school and home. You can’t go wrong!

Lisa & Doug

Our son received tutoring from Darlene Larson for almost 4 years and is now a Barton Graduate! Her knowledge and expertise helped him become more confident at school and be a better student. Along the way, he learned many skills to help him cope with his dyslexia. Our family would highly recommend “The Reading Spelling Connection” to anybody struggling with a reading disability. Mrs. Larson is dedicated to teaching her students and helping them succeed in the classroom and beyond. Thank you Darlene!


Our son was struggling with reading in school while in 3rd grade. He was in low reading class and his reading scores were a couple grades behind. Along with his teachers, we were not able to determine whether it was an attention problem or truly a reading problem. A friend suggested we try out the Reading Spelling Connection with Darlene. Our son has been going there now for 2 years. When I asked our son about his experiences with Mrs. Larson he said “It is easier for me to learn because it is one on one and there are no distractions”. Darlene is very helpful and patient but is able to encourage the kids to work hard. Our son is now in 5th grade and has raised his spelling scores 3-4 levels and is reading at his regular grade level. I am so glad we spent the time and money to get him up to speed before he moves on to middle school. Reading is something you will need in every facet of your life. Don’t under-estimate the need to read!