Sunday, January 23, 2005


Here's What's Happening With Phonics

Read through Joanne Jacobs blog posting on Messing with success.

"Third graders at a mostly black, mostly poor school in Rockford, Illinois aced the state reading tests, coming in second behind a school for gifted students, a few years after their school adopted scripted, teacher-directed instruction in phonics in the early grades. But fifth graders, who'd been taught under the "balanced literacy" method, were reading poorly, so the principal expanded the direct instruction program to all grades. The district relieved the principal of her instructional duties and ordered a return to "balanced literacy,"

Once students had a foundation to decode words, or sound them out as is done in phonics, teachers would move forward with other approaches. This came at the end of first grade or into second grade."

Can anyone else validate this style of learning? It's very much traditional in approach. My other question (for the experts) is "is this approach for all types of learners?" Would really love to discuss this further because of the many passionate people who think the constructivist approach is the only approach.

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