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​ABC Tutoring
Kathy’s Story

I’ve been tutoring for some time now, and one of my most heart-warming memories is one of the very first students I tutored – Kathy. When her parents introduced me to Kathy, she was seven years old and undergoing treatment for cancer. It’s such an ugly disease for anyone to suffer, but, for me, it’s especially disturbing to see cancer attack a young child. But Kathy had that lively spark in her eyes, and her parents and doctors were hopefully optimistic.

Her illness caused Kathy to miss quite a bit of Kindergarten and 1st grade. She was about a year behind in her reading skills. And, with ongoing treatments and medical appointments, Kathy wouldn’t be able to attend the 2nd grade. Kathy’s parents put together a home-schooling program that worked around her medical schedule. They asked me to tutor Kathy in reading.

Kathy would have good days and bad days. That, and frequent medical appointments meant that our tutoring schedule had to be flexible. But Kathy worked hard during our tutoring sessions and seemed to enjoy almost everything we read together. She made steady progress, and, by the beginning of 3rd grade, she tested-out at grade level.

I like to think that our time together, reading, gave Kathy some escape from the pains of her treatments. I like to think that I made that small contribution to Kathy’s recovery.

Because, over time, the good days became more frequent – and, then, pretty regular. By the time 3rd grade was ready to start, Kathy was ready to go back to school – healthy, prepared and confident. It warms my heart to feel that I played a small role in that accomplishment.

Parent Reviews


“During Summer vacation, my daughter, Sarah, advanced a whole year in reading. Both Sarah and I met with Mrs. Knuth twice a week for an hour each lesson. And I surprised myself with how much I learned about first grade reading, too! Our experience with Mary Knuth was very rewarding.”
~ Anna


“My wife and I could not find a tutor in our small town when our son needed help with his reading. One of our relatives told us about ABC Tutoring and Mary Knuth. For us, Verona was a long drive, but, once we met Mary, we enrolled our son right away. So, for about a year, either my wife or I would drive our son all the way to Verona to see Mary. It was a long drive, but well worth the time and expense. Last year, our son – now in the 7th grade – tested at a 12th grade level in reading.”
~ Patrick


“We moved to Madison several years ago and enrolled our son in an excellent school. Our son is very bright. We’ve read to him since he was a baby. His life has been filled with travel and all kinds of enriching experiences. He loves school – especially science and math. So, imagine how shocked we were when his first grade teacher told us that he could not read very well and was a long way behind his classmates.

“We arranged for our son to meet with Mary Knuth for an hour after school two times a week. We were thrilled when we saw the progress he made after the very first week. By the end of first grade, our son was reading at a 3rd grade level. Even Mary told us that she’d never seen a child make so much progress in nine months.”
~ Mike and Kelly


“I decided to educate my daughter at home instead of sending her to the 2nd grade. I was able to manage all of her subjects except for reading. My daughter struggled with reading in the 1st grade. So I hired a reading coach – Mary Knuth. Coach Mary worked with my daughter for an hour a day, five days a week, for the entire school year. Both my daughter and I enjoyed the relaxed, informal sessions with Coach Mary. Mary has a great rapport with both her students and their parents.

“When my daughter returned to public school for 3rd grade, she earned A’s in every area – including Reading. My daughter returned to public school both confident and capable of thriving in a very competitive environment. I highly recommend Mary Knuth as a tutor.”
~ Cheryl