A family-owned business with a passion for teaching students to read
Nancy Alemian Telian, MS, CCC-SLP is a co-founder of Reading with TLC™ and the author of the Lively Letters™ program. As an ASHA-certified speech and language pathologist who specializes in the diagnosis and treatment of reading disorders, Nancy maintains a private practice in Weymouth, MA. She is an adjunct faculty member at Boston’s prestigious MGH Institute of Health Professions Graduate Program in Communication Sciences and Disorders, where she has served as a clinical supervisor. Nancy was involved in the Massachusetts Department of Education Bay State Reading Initiative, having served as a reviewer of the teacher training modules for phonemic awareness and phonics. She was also a master teacher trainer for the Massachusetts Department of Education Teacher Training Institutes under the Reading First Grant and the No Child Left Behind Act. Also an accomplished pianist, Nancy composed and performed the music for the Lively Letters™ Character Songs, and is the composer and performer of the piano CD, From Dream to Reality.
Penny Alemian Castagnozzi, who has a background in elementary education, is a co-founder of Reading with TLC™ and has been a specialist in the development and implementation of the Reading with TLC™ programs since 1991. She has provided reading therapy in both the public school setting and in the private practice that she currently maintains in Weymouth, MA. As well as speaking on the topics of reading disorders and educational strategies for improving literacy, Penny has been a repeat motivational speaker at national sales conventions. She is the creator of the Sight Words You Can See™ program, which trains the acquisition of phonetically irregular sight words, and is the author of several educational books, including the highly popular Lively Letters™ Character Poem Book and Let’s Practice Reading with TLC™. A singer/songwriter since her teens, Penny was the lyricist and one of the singers for the Lively Letters™ Character Songs CD. Also a writer of children’s literature, Penny is the author of Wedding Time for Emmie and Jake, A Roomful of Rainbows, and Sight Words Stories You Can Read.
Reading with TLC™ was developed with a team approach by two sisters: Nancy Alemian Telian and Penny Alemian Castagnozzi. The program was originally created in 1990 in an urban school setting in Massachusetts, where students with reading and auditory processing weaknesses were referred for speech therapy services to train phonemic awareness.
Quickly seeing that letter-sound knowledge would help students in developing phonemic awareness skills, Nancy Telian began designing techniques for her students who struggled with letter sounds. She would go home, put her young children to bed, and then draw picture cues into the letters to remind her students what they should be doing with their mouths when making the sounds.
Nancy began implementing these animated letter cards in manipulative activities, where students were “playing” with letter pictures, reading and spelling words, and learning at a pace much quicker than she’d ever seen before. This led to the development of the Lively Letters™ program.
Her sister, Penny Castagnozzi, joined Nancy a year later, and together they fine-tuned the program, holding on to only the most effective strategies for improving phonemic awareness and phonics. In addition, Penny created the Sight Words You Can See™ program in 1996, helping readers of all abilities quickly learn the most difficult sight words to help improve reading fluency. Since then, the co-founders have stayed passionate about helping all students and struggling readers learn to read and spell with ease, changing millions of lives in the process.