Comments wanted on principles for new literacy course.

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chew8
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Post by chew8 » Mon Jul 30, 2007 11:41 am

Yes I am going as far as the child having a big enough vocabulary to use a dictionary definition to learn the pronounciation and meaning of further words. The rules reduce the effort to build the vocabulary but when it comes to the crunch the rest are learned individually, the rules having done their job. If Oxford or Collins create a dictionary tailored for this purpose it will help a lot.

'Jolly Phonics' has already produced a very simple dictionary in which young children can look up the meanings and pronunciations of words - 'Jolly Dictionary'. I know that my grandson (now nearly 9) has been using this virtually since it was published in 2003.

Jenny C.

g.carter
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Post by g.carter » Mon Jul 30, 2007 12:20 pm

I love your expression, Mona :
Noddy on up to Shakespeare
I sincerely hope you mean the cleaned-up version of Noddy!

briangilbert
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Location: West London

Post by briangilbert » Mon Jul 30, 2007 8:57 pm

Judy wrote:Thanks for your reply, Brian.

I'm afraid I didn't make my first query clear.

What I meant was, 'In what way are you hoping to improve Mona's programme.' It seems to me that it is only when we are clear about your specific aims that we can give feedback as to whether you are succeeding or not.
Hi Judy,

The ways I hope to improve Mona's course are listed in the first item of this topic. They appear in their latest form in the Introduction page of my working draft of the course at the address given with my RRF signature
http://www.brian-gilbert.com/mmbgrd/index.htm
A look at the current state of the draft is also a guide. If you try out one of my ideas because based on your experience it is promising and it works that will also be a success.

Regards Brian,
Brian Gilbert
http://www.brian-gilbert.com/mmbgrd/index.htm
http://www.brian-gilbert.com/teach/index.htm

briangilbert
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Location: West London

Post by briangilbert » Mon Jul 30, 2007 9:02 pm

chew8 wrote: 'Jolly Phonics' has already produced a very simple dictionary in which young children can look up the meanings and pronunciations of words - 'Jolly Dictionary'. I know that my grandson (now nearly 9) has been using this virtually since it was published in 2003.

Jenny C.
Hi Jenny,

Thanks very much. It seems extremely likely that with a dictionary like that the pupil will be less dependent on the teacher. The trouble with an ordinary one is that you need a good vocabulary to understand the definitions. I will get a copy.

Regards Brian.
Brian Gilbert
http://www.brian-gilbert.com/mmbgrd/index.htm
http://www.brian-gilbert.com/teach/index.htm

bwking
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Post by bwking » Mon Jul 30, 2007 11:00 pm

Mona,

Whenever you do a reply or open a new topic, you will see on the left hand side a choice of Emoticons. Wherever your cursor (vertical thingy when you are writing a message) is you can temporarily point it at a smiley face etc. and hit the left hand mouse key and the emoticon is reproduced in your message. Try it a few times before sending.

Brian

briangilbert
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Location: West London

Post by briangilbert » Tue Jul 31, 2007 8:29 am

bwking wrote:Mona,

Whenever you do a reply or open a new topic, you will see on the left hand side a choice of Emoticons. Wherever your cursor (vertical thingy when you are writing a message) is you can temporarily point it at a smiley face etc. and hit the left hand mouse key and the emoticon is reproduced in your message. Try it a few times before sending.

Brian
With all due respect to bwking. In case Mona or anyone else does not notice the above reply was from bwking, not from me. One of my principles for the course is to avoid emotion as I think rightly or wrongly it distracts from the debate.
Regards Brian Gilbert
Brian Gilbert
http://www.brian-gilbert.com/mmbgrd/index.htm
http://www.brian-gilbert.com/teach/index.htm

briangilbert
Posts: 72
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Location: West London

Post by briangilbert » Tue Jul 31, 2007 8:35 am

Brian[/quote]
With all due respect to bwking. In case Mona or anyone else does not notice the above reply was from bwking, not from me. One of my principles for the course is to avoid emotion as I think rightly or wrongly it distracts from the debate.
Regards Brian Gilbert[/quote]

PS. I see that bwking was responding to Mona's reference to smileys making my reply a bit inappropriate for which I apologise.
Regards Brian Gilbert
Brian Gilbert
http://www.brian-gilbert.com/mmbgrd/index.htm
http://www.brian-gilbert.com/teach/index.htm

MonaMMcNee
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Improvement of Step

Post by MonaMMcNee » Thu Aug 02, 2007 11:37 am

Judy raises the question of improving Step by Step. I would be grateful for impartial comment, as the Galore Park edition is a makeover of the original: new front and back cover, new illustrations - "contemporary", new size (so worksheets are now on two pages), capital and lower case introduced at the same time and so on.
One change was inevitable - the Rose report made the myths redundant.
If any of you have both versios, I would love to know which is best !
The changes represent nearly two years of Galore Park work.

Kelly
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Post by Kelly » Thu Aug 02, 2007 8:43 pm

Hi Mona,

Two years? :shock: What were they doing for most of that? Certainly there isn't THAT many changes!

Hope you are well Mona.

Kelly

Kelly
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Post by Kelly » Thu Aug 02, 2007 9:40 pm

Brian, can you expand on the following two ideas:

1. A word is the name of an idea.
2. A sentence expresses the relationship between two or more ideas.

Possibly give me an example for each.

Thanks,

Kelly

briangilbert
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Joined: Mon Jul 16, 2007 3:45 pm
Location: West London

Post by briangilbert » Thu Aug 02, 2007 10:43 pm

Kelly wrote:Brian, can you expand on the following two ideas:
1. A word is the name of an idea.
2. A sentence expresses the relationship between two or more ideas.
Possibly give me an example for each.
Thanks,
Kelly
Hi Kelly,
If I were talking about you sitting on a mat I would say "Kelly is sitting on a mat". The other party, knowing you, would picture in their mind you, and knowing what a mat is they would picture you sitting on it. If I say StepbyStep to a phonics enthusiast the whole of Mona's book comes up in their mind. StepbyStep is cheating a bit but I don't have to as many people know it as 'Step'.
Does it matter? Look at my course 'Introduction' page in its present state and see how the file names in one word summarize the lesson they cover. Look at the internet address with 'mmbgrd' embracing the idea of a course based on Mona McNee's Step by Brian Gilbert teaching reading.
I may not quite make it but you may be able to see how I treat a word as an idea. What do you look in an encyclpoedia for? The idea represented by a word.
In computing I used this concept to break down a program description into smaller and smaller ideas until all the small ideas could be written as a few lines of program code. In this course I hope to break the idea of reading into small lessons that a child can scoot through.

'A sentence expresses the relationship between two or more ideas.'
Look at any sentence and that is what you see. In the previous sentence 'Look' is one idea, 'sentence' is another, 'see' is another. All the words are ideas which put together in your mind are like the coordinates on a map allowing you to picture what I pictured as I wrote it. A heavy idea but all the more valuable if you grasp it.

Thanks for the penetrating questions. I know many will be tempted to think I have a cheek taking on this task. Hopefully by answering questions such as yours they will be reassured.
Brian Gilbert
http://www.brian-gilbert.com/mmbgrd/index.htm
http://www.brian-gilbert.com/teach/index.htm

briangilbert
Posts: 72
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Location: West London

Improved phonics dictionary needed

Post by briangilbert » Sun Aug 05, 2007 12:54 pm

My work so far has revealed the need for a Dictionary tailored for use with phonics courses. Normal dictionaries are not child friendly in particular as regards pronunciation and words used in definitions. The Jolly Dictionary looks pretty good but I would like to see the following features some of which would need to be in a DVD copy:-

1. It should be able to contain all the words covered by common phonics courses with the ability to limit access only to words covered by a particular course. The authors of each course would need to supply input relating specifically to their course such as the individual rules and the order they are taught.
2. Include pronunciation guide in child friendly form as I think is done in the Jolly Dictionary but also by audio from the DVD.
3. The ability to choose the voice for the audio. ‘Proper’ meaning Oxford English plus female, male and regional accents.
4. The ability to limit access to words up to a particular step in the course.
5. The ability to limit access to a vocabulary deemed sufficient to deem a pupil - a proficient reader.
6. The dictionary to be based on one or more existing dictionaries and generated by computer.
7. Definitions to be designed for use by pupils of Phonics courses by minimizing the use of words that are not included in the target vocabulary.

The advantages of producing this dictionary would be:-
- Many more words would be made available for practicing the earlier steps.
- The result would be less error prone than manual methods owing to the remorseless logic of the computer.
- Authors would have a reliable authority when writing ‘Readers’.
- It would help review the order in which the steps are taught by giving objective figures for the number of new words covered by each rule.
- It would help decide the specific vocabulary we should aim to teach.
- Through access to its synonyms existing literature would be easier to convert into ‘readers’.

Is anyone with programming skills who would like to attempt it?
Brian Gilbert
http://www.brian-gilbert.com/mmbgrd/index.htm
http://www.brian-gilbert.com/teach/index.htm

Elizabeth
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Joined: Sat Nov 20, 2004 8:47 pm

Post by Elizabeth » Tue Aug 07, 2007 9:45 am

I have not been following this discussion from the start, so I am sorry if my comments are not relevant. I am puzzled by the first message from briangilbert . He wrote:
Teach the pupil to read their first few thousand? words by learning the sound of each of the 26 letters a few letters at a time. Teach him to read the words for which he has learnt the letters by hearing the letters in his mind and joining the sounds together in his mind.
What about the sounds that are not represented by the 26 alphabet letters? All the programs I recommend when I'm training teach many more graphemes than the 26 single alphabet letter ones. They teach graphemes for 42+ sounds, usually one for each sound at first, and then alternative graphemes for each sound, e.g. 'ay', 'oy', 'ch', 'ai', 'oi', etc. as well as single letters.

Since writing this, I've checked 'Step by Step' and Mona certainly does teach digraphs, etc.
Elizabeth

MonaMMcNee
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Atthe beginning

Post by MonaMMcNee » Tue Aug 07, 2007 11:23 am

Yes I do teach digraphs in the end, but at the beginning I teach 26 single letters and their cvommon sound.
THRASS presents the whole gamut of digraphs from Day 1 (as I understand it). Like Brian G., I begin with 3 letters to make 4 woreds (a at cat act), then another three d-o-g unlocking more wods, and so on. I do not introdfuce digraphs until Step 36 ( of the original 100). The Galore version introduces digraphs at step 17 of 50.
We teach a bit at a time and use it, then a bit moere and practise using that.

briangilbert
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Location: West London

Sorry, it was a mistake to say just the single letters

Post by briangilbert » Tue Aug 07, 2007 4:18 pm

Hi Judy,

Sorry, my course is based on Mona's and does include her letter groups. My introduction to this thread was a slip of the brain for which I apologise. I will bring it up to date shortly.

By the way is there a Phonics Crossword Patience activity yet? It would be something like:-
-Make cardboard tiles for the letters and letter groups, one square per letter.
- The letter groups would be two or more squares joined together in a row and could be placed horizontally or vertically.
- State the words allowed in the crossword for the particular go.
- The pupil has to assemble a crossword on squared paper using letter groups where they belong.
- If it has not been tried please try it and say if it is useful and what rules you finished up with.
- There are special cases to get round. For one rule Mona's step 051, you would have three squares with the first two blank and the third with an e. - The pupil puts a single vowel on the first square and a consonant on the middle square, then places the group to fit his crossword.

The current state of the course can be viewed at
http://www.brian-gilbert.com/mmbgrd/index.htm
though it has some way to go and may be changed significantly. It will after all include writing lessons which can be combined with the reading lessons or used seperately. This will be useful where pupils have finished a reading course on a schedule but still cannot write properly.
Brian Gilbert
Brian Gilbert
http://www.brian-gilbert.com/mmbgrd/index.htm
http://www.brian-gilbert.com/teach/index.htm

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