Teachers teach us the sounds/phonemes of the alphabets as: A apple, B bed, C cat, D dog E elephant and so on. Everyone will and can learn this with no problem at all.
Then when they start teaching us to read, the NIGHTMARE begins for the 20% of kids who are later considered stupid or lazy. These kids are neither stupid nor are they lazy. These are the kids who need to be instructed explicitly on anything different from what they have been taught. These are the kids who ‘shut-down’ when they are confused.
Let’s take the alphabet ‘E’ which the teacher had said is represented by the beginning sound of the word elephant. Then, the kid is taught words which have no relation to the sound the letter ‘E’ makes in elephant:
Each, eagle, equal, eel, ear, easy, east,
Earn, early, earth,
Eight, eighteen, eighty
Either (The Americans pronounce this word one way whilst the British pronounce it another way).
The 20% of the kids who like to be taught explicitly, shut-down as none of the words above have the same initial sound as the sound of the alphabet ‘e’ in elephant. In other words there are 6 different sounds that 'e' makes other than the sound in words like elephant, ebony, echo etc.
All that these kids need to be told is that all vowels and many of the consonants have more than one sound. These are smart kids and they ‘disengage’ when things are confusing.
Schools do not teach grapheme/phonemes relation properly and then call these kids dyslexic and that they have a 'phonological awareness deficit'.
Trust me, address this problem in all kindergartens and primary schools and the failure rate in English will decrease.