'Light-touch, phonics-based check' for Y1 children

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Re: 'Light-touch, phonics-based check' for Y1 children

Post by Susan Godsland » Fri Jan 07, 2011 11:08 am

Phonics expert (Greg Brooks :???: ) labels Year 1 test plans 'a waste of money'

http://www.tes.co.uk/article.aspx?storycode=6066997
Professor Brooks is a long-term advocate of phonics, the teaching technique favoured by Conservative ministers. But he believes the money set aside for the reading test would be better spent on providing the resources that children need.

"What they are proposing is horrendous. It is a vast waste of money," he said. "Even though I'm an advocate for synthetic phonics, I completely disagree with this test. It will inevitably cause teaching to the test, deflecting attention away from more valuable areas of the curriculum.

"The research literature says synthetic phonics works best in a broad and rich literacy environment, and that the effect of this (test) will be that children will be able to jump through these decoding hoops but not make much progress in reading."

Professor Brooks added that his research on phonics, which was cited in the Government's white paper, has been misunderstood.

His findings showed that synthetic phonics enables children to make progress in identifying words, Professor Brooks said. But he added there was not enough evidence to show that synthetic phonics was better than any other phonics system.

He said: "It is well-established that systematic phonics works better than an unsystematic system. From the angle of theory, I think synthetic phonics ought to be superior but we need more research."

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Re: 'Light-touch, phonics-based check' for Y1 children

Post by Susan Godsland » Tue Jan 25, 2011 1:08 pm

http://community.cypnow.co.uk/blogs/joh ... -degs.aspx

Why do people believe that Prof. Greg Brooks is 'a keen promoter of synthetic phonics'?

Slibs, zohs and degs
It is slightly depressing (if unsurprising) that Professor Greg Brooks, a keen promoter of synthetic phonics name-checked in the White Paper, has now said that his research has been misused in support of the Year 1 reading test.

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Re: 'Light-touch, phonics-based check' for Y1 children

Post by chew8 » Tue Jan 25, 2011 1:46 pm

Presumably people believe that Greg B. is a keen promoter of synthetic phonics because he was quoted in the TES of 7 January as saying 'Even though I'm an advocate for synthetic phonics, I completely disagree with this test'.

Jenny C.

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Re: 'Light-touch, phonics-based check' for Y1 children

Post by Susan Godsland » Wed Feb 16, 2011 2:25 pm

http://www.nurseryworld.co.uk/news/bull ... orldUpdate

A group of early years experts, including academics and practitioners, have launched a petition calling on the Government to abandon plans to introduce a phonics-based reading test for all six-year-olds.
Janet Moyles, early years consultant and former chair of TACTYC, said, 'We're against a reading test at six because it's so inappropriate for young children. Most children at that age are not ready to learn phonics, never mind be tested on them. It depends on children's previous language experiences, how much they understand the structure of language.'

For example, she said, children are much more likely to be able to read the word 'dinosaur' than 'the', because dinosaur, although more complex in terms of phonics, is an exciting and easily visualised word.

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Re: 'Light-touch, phonics-based check' for Y1 children

Post by chew8 » Wed Feb 16, 2011 7:59 pm

Janet Moyles says that 'Most children at that age [6] are not ready to learn phonics'. How is it then, that, whole Reception classes are making a successful start on phonics when they are given good child-friendly phonics teaching, despite the fact that some of them have not yet turned 5, let alone 6?

Her statement that 'it depends on children's language experiences, how much they understand the structure of language' suggests that she thinks that children have to understand the phonemic structure of spoken words before phonics will make any sense to them. This is simply not true.

Jenny C.

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Re: 'Light-touch, phonics-based check' for Y1 children

Post by Susan Godsland » Sat Feb 19, 2011 6:04 pm

The reading experts on the Bad Science forum discuss the phonics-based reading check:

Made up words in reading tests
http://www.badscience.net/forum/viewtop ... =3&t=21203

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Re: 'Light-touch, phonics-based check' for Y1 children

Post by chew8 » Sat Feb 19, 2011 7:00 pm

Some good contributions from 'Raven'!

Jenny C.

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Re: 'Light-touch, phonics-based check' for Y1 children

Post by JIM CURRAN » Sat Feb 19, 2011 7:56 pm

Reading test for six-year-olds to include non-words
By Hannah Richardson BBC News education reporter

A number of made-up words such as "koob" or "zort" are to be included in the government's planned new reading test for six-year-olds in England.

The idea has drawn criticism from literary experts who say the approach will confuse those beginning to read.

The UK Literacy Association said the plan was "bonkers" as the purpose of reading was to understand meaning.

http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/education-12509477

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Re: 'Light-touch, phonics-based check' for Y1 children

Post by Susan Godsland » Thu Mar 10, 2011 5:36 pm

Janet Moyles (see above) of TACTYC has found Mumsnet :roll:

http://www.mumsnet.com/Talk/education/1 ... e-at-age-6

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Re: 'Light-touch, phonics-based check' for Y1 children

Post by chew8 » Fri Mar 18, 2011 9:16 am

Ruth, Shahed and I have an article in today's TES:

http://www.tes.co.uk/article.aspx?storycode=6073421

Jenny C.

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Re: 'Light-touch, phonics-based check' for Y1 children

Post by Susan Godsland » Fri Mar 18, 2011 9:49 am

I was going to add the excellent TES article link, that Jenny's just flagged up, to the Mumsnet thread started by Janet Moyles of TACTYC (see above) but, curiously, the Mumsnet thread appears to have been 'pulled' :shock:

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Re: 'Light-touch, phonics-based check' for Y1 children

Post by maizie » Fri Mar 18, 2011 10:01 am

Excellent article. Congratulations to Jenny, Ruth and Shahed.


Re the mumsnet thread. Do you think mumsnet, if asked, would say why it has been pulled, Susan? I don't recall anything on in which was offensive.

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Re: 'Light-touch, phonics-based check' for Y1 children

Post by JAC » Fri Mar 18, 2011 10:58 am

Great article. I especially liked this "in any case, might children not encounter non-words in their text-reading - for example in Michael Rosen's poems Bips and The Smeenge." ;-)

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Re: 'Light-touch, phonics-based check' for Y1 children

Post by Susan Godsland » Fri Mar 18, 2011 11:28 am

Positive letter in the TES about the phonics test:

Pleasantly surprised by phonics test
http://www.tes.co.uk/article.aspx?storycode=6073432
My school, Brookside Primary, is one of 16 schools involved in early trials of the materials, and we found that pupils responded really well. Most read through the list of 40 words - half real and half nonsense - in two or three minutes. The pupils thought the nonsense words were fun rather than confusing, and all understood the task easily

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Re: 'Light-touch, phonics-based check' for Y1 children

Post by chew8 » Fri Mar 18, 2011 12:04 pm

I've just spotted this lovely letter, also in today's TES:

http://www.tes.co.uk/article.aspx?storycode=6073432

Jenny C.

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