Our Mission: To effect change through improved literacy

Richards Learning Systems®

A Multi-Sensory, Systematic Approach to Reading

"If a child can't learn the way we teach,
maybe we should teach the way they learn."

-- Ignacio Estrada

Richards Learning Systems® offers a different and distinctive concept to deliver its reading methods to children and teachers at the same time.
It is an easily-implemented, multi-sensory, systematic phonics program. Richards Learning Systems® blends a cost-effective and time-efficient teacher training program with a research-based, teachable and effective reading program for children.

A Literacy Problem in the U.S.

Millions of American children and adults ... CANNOT READ!

Millions of children and adults in the United States cannot read well, or at all.  The U.S. Government estimates that 50% of our adult population has a reading problem.

Collectively the federal, state and local governments spend $530 BILLION dollars annually on education.  Yet our reading scores have remained the same for decades.

College teacher preparation program do not train teachers in a reading method (a step-by-step approach).  Rather, they teach various reading theories (ideas) that the teacher must cobble together into their own “method”.  Retraining our teachers is costly, running into thousands of dollars for each teacher.

The Solution -- Richards Learning Systems® (RLS)

RLS blends a cost-effective and time-efficient teacher training program with a research-based, teachable and effective reading program for children.

Unique Learning Model

Teachers and students learn the curriculum at the same time through short videos, enhanced by kinesthetic learning activities

Engaging Delivery System

Curriculum taught through short, episodic  DVD video lessons, plus hands-on practice with workbooks, teacher’s guides, and manipulatives


Eliminates the need for teacher retraining in costly workshops, saving school districts valuable time and thousands of dollars per teacher

Unique Learning Model

We start with a proven reading method entitled Richards Learning Systems®.  This program has proved successful by hundreds of teachers in many school districts, private tutors, and parents.  Children at every stage of development have successfully learned to read.  The RLS approach is particularly effective with special needs children.

RLS combines this successful reading method with visual presentation designed to engage children in the program.  Uniquely, as children learn the components of RLS, the teachers will also learn these components and help the children understand and use them to master reading.  Student retention and mastery of reading is greatly increased with kinesthetic (touch and muscle movement) learning.

Engaging Delivery System

These are the components of the Richards Learning Systems®  Video Project:

Short, episodic DVD video lessons

Teacher's Resource Manual

Hands-On Manipulatives

Student Workbooks

Children need fun, engaging child-centered videos lessons with many different graphics.  Our “Disney-esque” lessons that children will look forward to watching, just like the next episode of their favorite TV show.

Each DVD video lesson begins with a brief concept introduction (3 to 5 minutes) that explains the “skill of the day” to both teachers and students.  Then students practice the skill in workbooks using manipulatives to reinforce understanding of the day’s concepts.  The teacher moves around the classroom informally assessing mastery and may ask students to do board work to further assess their understanding.

Students that have not adequately grasped the day’s concepts can review the day’s DVD concept and do additional practice exercises.  And newly enrolled transient students can be “caught up” to their peers with the video format.

Each concept is taught sequentially, building on understanding from previous lessons with continuous review of previously learned skills.  With this innovation, teachers quickly absorb the method to teach reading effectively.


Traditionally, teachers are trained in costly, lengthy workshops.  When the school is paying for the workshop, it is responsible for workshop tuition, teacher and student materials, teacher salaries, and substitute teacher salaries.  The cost adds up quickly, which can be very expensive for 20 to 30 teachers.  The average cost is about $4,000+ per attending teacher.

By training teachers and students at the same time, Richards Learning Systems® eliminates the need for teacher retraining in a costly workshop format.  When a teacher leaves, the program is passed on to the new teacher who is again trained in her classroom with her students.

Partnership with the Cleveland Schools

A Commitment for 27 Classrooms

For decades, the Cleveland Metropolitan School District’s (CMSD) reading test scores have not risen.  CMSD has had twelve superintendents in the last twenty years. Today Mr. Eric Gordon, CMSD CEO and newly elected “Urban Educator of the Year”, is passionately committed to helping the children of Cleveland learn to read.  The Creative Education Institute has partnered with Eric Gordon and CMSD to change the way children read and teachers learn to teach reading.  The solution — Richards Learning Systems®.

Initially, 27 K-2 classrooms will participate in the project.  A skilled reading researcher will carefully study the efficacy of the teachers’ and students’ success with this innovation approach.  Our partnership and methodology will dramatically improve the reading skills for Cleveland children and ultimately beyond to other cities.

Measuring Our Success

There are plenty of online reading programs.  However, most of the time, students with poor reading skills are placed in front of a computer and expected to learn on their own with little, if any, support from a teacher or even an aide.  And the teacher in charge has few ways of supporting the failing child or children because of their poor teacher training.

Our video training concept engages both teachers and students who will learn together.  The Richards Learning Systems® innovative approach will measure:

  • How well teachers are mastering the program concepts
  • How motivated teachers are to use the program
  • How well students are mastering the program concepts
  • How engaged students are in the learning using the video concept
  • How well students are doing on standardized tests compared to peers not in the program

Participating schools will be asked to provide standardized test scores.  An independent evaluator specializing in systematic reading instruction will measure results.

What Educators Are Saying About RLS

Sponsor a Video Today

This video will tell you more about the video project currently being developed for Richards Learning Systems®.

Donate to Our Video Project Today

Richards Learning Systems® has successfully helped thousands of children and adults in its twenty-five year history in written form.
By adding videos, RLS will reach millions of children. This is a simple solution to a complex problem.

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