Primary Education News

23 Jun '14

News Gove, love, move the limits of phonics | @guardianletters

You reported (Study backs teaching of synthetic phonics, 16 June) that a study by Marlynne Grant has reinforced the argument for using synthetic phonics in teaching children to read. It would be useful to know more about the tests used. A major study supporting this system in Scotland came up with a similar result when 12-year-olds were tested on their phonic ability. However, when their ability to understand what they read was tested they were on average only a few months ahead, and that gain was falling.The argument is not against using phonics. It is concerned with the overemphasis of this aspect of teaching children to read. Individuals have different requirements. A child I was hearing a few weeks ago was having problems with left/right direction she is left-eye dominant. Moreover, teaching children to read of course includes encouraging them to read for information, for fun, for insight. Continue reading...

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