Hi moms, today we’ll talk about Phonics Class. As more research brings to light the advantages of phonics and phonemic awareness instructions have over whole language teaching methods, more parents are becoming alert to teaching using phonics and phonemic awareness skills. Many parents today are worried about the strategy that’s getting used to teach their children how to learn, and rightfully so. The entire language method is more of a way of “word memorization”, where the kid is taught to look at printed words as whole configurations, much like considering Chinese characters.
Teaching phonemic awareness skills involves the break down of words into individual sounds (phonemes), and then joining the parts to create, or sound out the words. In comparison, whole language learning stresses the flow and meaning of the writing, where “sounding out” words isn’t used, the words are decoded through its larger context, and word memorization plays a key role. What might you rather do, memorize hundreds or even tens and thousands of words centered on shapes, or learn a systematic means of reading?
English isn’t designed to be memorized as shapes and sight objects. It becomes very difficult to master to see by memorizing and recognizing shapes. Phonics and teaching phonemic awareness skills requires one to memorize the letters and the sounds they represent, and with this technique, children as young as two years old can learn to see successfully, and comprehend what they are reading. Try teaching a young child with the entire language learning method, see how successful he or she is likely to be at memorizing shapes. Teaching by utilizing phonics will routinely produce successful readers.
There is plenty of evidence to suggest that phonics is clearly an excellent approach to teaching children just how to read. In the USA, over 30 million adults (14%) are believed functionally illiterate, and are unable to perform simple everyday literacy activities.  This however, shouldn’t be surprising since over one third of all children cannot even achieve basic reading competency by the full time they are in grade four. This is a finding from the National Assessment of Educational Progress (NAEP). Are these children failing at literacy since they are dumb? I I hardly think so, but perhaps it is a result of poor people reading instructions they receive.
It’s been proven time and again, that teaching phonemic awareness skill produces superior reading and spelling abilities than whole language teaching methods. Tens and thousands of studies have confirmed this, and the National Reading Panel has also made a definite statement about this.
Some teachers will probably say that they teach with a couple phonics, the truth is that numerous teachers aren’t knowledgeable in the basic concepts of the English language. No, I’m not making a random statement. In a recently available study, the researchers stated: “many in-service teachers aren’t knowledgeable in the basic concepts of the English language “.Their study found that even although the teachers might be well versed in children’s literature, but they cannot learn how to address the fundamental foundations of language and reading. Inside their survey of instructors conducted, the researchers discovered that the teachers performed poorly on the concepts relating to morphemes and phonemes. In another second study, over 80% of the interviewed instructors agreed that phonics is a desirable method to make use of for beginning reading instructions. 
Some argue that a child will acquire a familiarity with phonics on his / her own after learning to read using whole language methods. While this may be true for many children, it’s hardly the case for another children with reading difficulties. Each time a child is taught to learn utilizing a whole word approach, they develop a practice of looking at all the language by their whole configurations, and this prevents the little one from seeing the phonetic structure of the words. Real readers who learned to learn by learning phonemic awareness skills do not want clues or cues to simply help them recognize shapes – they develop an automatic power to decode the letters and words.
Ultimately, it’s around the parents to choose the road for which to teach their children to read. They can either simply leave it up to the education system, and hope that the youngster doesn’t turn out to be among the 38% grade four students which don’t develop even basic reading achievement, or they can take the initiative and make the decision to simply help their children develop phonemic awareness skills in early stages before even starting kindergarten. Research on phonemic awareness shows again and again that phonemic awareness skills predicted reading and spelling success of children in school. Thanks for reading this article about Phonics Class and see you next time.
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2. J Learn Disabil. 2009 Sep-Oct;42(5):392-402. Epub 2009 Jun 19.
Why elementary teachers might be inadequately prepared to teach reading.
Joshi RM, Binks E, Hougen M, Dahlgren ME, Ocker-Dean E, Smith DL.
Texas A&M University, USA.