About Us

Brenda Lana

Owner & Executive Director

“I saw smart kids who were struggling to learn or read. Learning specialists tried to help, but strategies and accommodations are like band-aids on gaping wounds – they don’t work and truly don’t address the root of problems. I became determined and committed to find real, effective solutions to help kids learn.”

About Us

How did we get started?

Brenda’s passion to help struggling students become successful learners led to the establishment of Pathfinders in 2003. She began her career in education in 1994 at a small private school and later taught third, fourth, and fifth grade in the Saddleback Unified School District in Southern California. She worked at the Orange County Department of Education as a Reading Resource Teacher in Special Education where she trained teachers in reading instruction and facilitated classroom instruction. She is certified as a Dyslexia Remediation Specialist.

She has spent the past several years studying the latest research about the brain and has been trained in specialized programs to retrain the brain and develop underlying skills. The traditional approach to diagnose and treat learning difficulties is incomplete. We now know that the brain has an attribute known as plasticity, meaning it can change.

What new research reveals is that there are layers of brain function that affect all areas of learning – layers of function that were not adequately addressed in the past. These layers include processing speed, working memory, visual and auditory processing, attention, planning, and organization. All these skills are critical for reading, math, and writing – all academic skills. Without a strong foundation in all these areas, even the simplest of academic tasks become overwhelming.

Pathfinders is life-changing!

Traditional tutoring reinforces what students need to know or academic skills. However, tutoring, coping skills, and compensation strategies seldom address the root of the problem. Students often continue to need tutoring year after year in order to barely keep up in school.

What makes Pathfinders different?

Pathfinders is different from most learning centers because we focus on solving learning differences by using a developmental, individualized approach addressing the whole person. We use a variety of programs to positively impact the learning experiences of students who consistently struggle in school, students who are bright and want an edge in school, or anyone who just wants to learn with less effort, including adults.

At Pathfinders we recognize that each person is unique and has distinct needs. We create a program tailored for each client using the initial evaluation and parent input. When learning problems appear to be medically based, we use a collaborative approach with many different professionals to provide the best outcome for the client.


Pathfinders uses cutting-edge, researched, brain-based tools and methods to provide cognitive training and solve underlying learning problems so that children, as well as adults, who find learning slow, painful, and difficult can increase confidence, learn with ease, and work independently.

We do this by focusing on and strengthening the skills underlying how a person learns. Schools concentrate on what students need to learn by teaching curriculum and additional tutoring reinforces that content, but…if a child struggles to learn, there is a reason.

  • Facebook
  • Twitter
  • LinkedIn
  • Youtube