Search found 369 matches

by john walker
Tue Nov 13, 2012 11:30 am
Forum: General Forum
Topic: Spelling strategies from a lexicographer
Replies: 5
Views: 3181

Re: Spelling strategies from a lexicographer

I see Masha the Menace :evil: has left a comment on the graun website :roll: !
by john walker
Mon Nov 12, 2012 10:18 pm
Forum: General Forum
Topic: Opinion about the Year One Phonics Screening Check
Replies: 466
Views: 148584

Re: Opinion about the Year One Phonics Screening Check

I'm not sure you understand the significance of the allegory. The windmills are imaginary enemies of one's own making (and Quijote was a charming and romantic but misguided fool; so I'm not sure I'd identify with him too strongly). What the windmills aren't are the respondents to your postings. At 3...
by john walker
Mon Nov 12, 2012 8:19 pm
Forum: General Forum
Topic: Opinion about the Year One Phonics Screening Check
Replies: 466
Views: 148584

Re: Opinion about the Year One Phonics Screening Check

I don't call Sounds-Write a synthetic phonics programme. It's called a linguistic phonics programme and I certainly won't quibble with my SP colleagues over the term. We call it that because the sounds in our speech are represented by little squiggles on the page we call spellings. These spellings c...
by john walker
Mon Nov 12, 2012 7:16 pm
Forum: General Forum
Topic: Opinion about the Year One Phonics Screening Check
Replies: 466
Views: 148584

Re: Opinion about the Year One Phonics Screening Check

First, the shortcomings of SP when it comes to the complexities of the English language. Of course these have always existed. It is this complexity which makes English more difficult to read and spell than some other languages. I don't think there is any way round this difficulty, and I don't think...
by john walker
Mon Nov 12, 2012 5:51 pm
Forum: General Forum
Topic: Opinion about the Year One Phonics Screening Check
Replies: 466
Views: 148584

Re: Opinion about the Year One Phonics Screening Check

I think you might be confusing clarity with validity. Yes, SP is seductively straightforward. Unfortunately, the written language is not straightforward. The SP approach does not cover all the complexities of the language. I can describe this lack of coverage in a very clear way: there are phonemes...
by john walker
Wed Nov 07, 2012 4:27 pm
Forum: General Forum
Topic: Opinion about the Year One Phonics Screening Check
Replies: 466
Views: 148584

Re: Opinion about the Year One Phonics Screening Check

I agree that coding can occur at different levels of abstraction. Coding at the phonic level is more versatile than coding at the word level, but it's still coding. Ships signalling using flags code at the phrase level. But we're not discussing ships' flags, are we? Of course there are a variety of...
by john walker
Wed Nov 07, 2012 1:24 pm
Forum: General Forum
Topic: Opinion about the Year One Phonics Screening Check
Replies: 466
Views: 148584

Re: Opinion about the Year One Phonics Screening Check

JAC, yes, the recognition of a whole word is decoding. It is 'translating' the written code into spoken language. That’s just where I think you’re wrong, Toots. Words as wholes are not pictographs or logographs. In fact, the expression ‘whole word’ is truly a misnomer. Early would-be inventors of w...
by john walker
Tue Oct 23, 2012 2:13 pm
Forum: General Forum
Topic: Opinion about the Year One Phonics Screening Check
Replies: 466
Views: 148584

Re: Opinion about the Year One Phonics Screening Check

Just for people's information, a few years ago Diane McGuinness wrote about a book she thought is the 'gold standard' on teaching comprehension: Block, C.C, Gambrell, L.B. and Pressley, M. (eds), Improving Comprehension Instruction , San Francisco, Jossey-Bass. When I saw what Diane had to say, I im...
by john walker
Tue Oct 23, 2012 10:00 am
Forum: General Forum
Topic: Opinion about the Year One Phonics Screening Check
Replies: 466
Views: 148584

Re: Opinion about the Year One Phonics Screening Check

Jenny said: I would never have supported synthetic phonics or the screening check as staunchly as I have done if I had not honestly believed, on the basis of the evidence I know about, that more early emphasis on decoding would result in better national standards of comprehension (and spelling) and ...
by john walker
Mon Oct 22, 2012 11:56 am
Forum: General Forum
Topic: Opinion about the Year One Phonics Screening Check
Replies: 466
Views: 148584

Re: Opinion about the Year One Phonics Screening Check

You're absolutely right, Volunteer, to draw the distinction between receptive and productive language. Receptive language always proceeeds at a faster pace than productive language. In fact, David Crystal points out in a number of his books that a well educated person's receptive vocabulary (the wor...
by john walker
Thu Oct 18, 2012 5:56 pm
Forum: General Forum
Topic: BBC R4: Caxton and the Printing Press
Replies: 1
Views: 1967

Re: BBC R4: Caxton and the Printing Press

Very interesting programme, Susan! One thing I'd never thought about was that it is often believed that the advent of print made the copying process more reliable. Not so, we heard from one of the contributors, and for the rather obvious reason that print is set back-to-front and upside-down, making...
by john walker
Sun Oct 14, 2012 9:09 am
Forum: General Forum
Topic: Opinion about the Year One Phonics Screening Check
Replies: 466
Views: 148584

Re: Opinion about the Year One Phonics Screening Check

It is not as simple as you claim. In some cases, in order to decode a word you need to understand it and the context; and in every case, in order to read the words you have decoded you need to understand them. This, Toots, is where we definitely do part company. In my humble opinion, you've got the...
by john walker
Sat Oct 13, 2012 5:56 pm
Forum: General Forum
Topic: Opinion about the Year One Phonics Screening Check
Replies: 466
Views: 148584

Re: Opinion about the Year One Phonics Screening Check

In response to Toots: Of course I agree that teachers teach to tests. What I'm objecting to in the SATs tests is that some schools seem hardly to anything other than prepare for the SATs, to the exclusion of all else. And, I'm not against SATs. I remember very well what happened when the 11+ was pha...
by john walker
Fri Oct 12, 2012 9:55 am
Forum: General Forum
Topic: Writing by hand is on the way to extinction.
Replies: 33
Views: 22147

Re: Writing by hand is on the way to extinction.

This is a very interesting posting, Jim, and thanks for flagging it up. The extended piece, written by Hensher, in the Observer last Sunday had particular resonance for me. About two years ago I began writing a daily page or two in a notebook every morning. One reason for this was that I'd decided t...
by john walker
Fri Oct 12, 2012 9:15 am
Forum: General Forum
Topic: Opinion about the Year One Phonics Screening Check
Replies: 466
Views: 148584

Re: Opinion about the Year One Phonics Screening Check

OK. I am opposed to the phonics screening check for the following reasons: 1. It encourages teaching to the test with children learning to decode lists of nonwords using time when children should be learning to decode real words, from which they can move onto reading real words in quality texts in ...