Friday, September 11, 2015

Challenging institutionalized assumptions about reading failure

I think it is time to challenge our institutionalized assumptions about reading failure. Our assumption that many students will be poor readers can and should be changed. As Dr. G Reid Lyon said, these kids are “instructional casualties”.

Since they are “instructional casualties” what should teachers do to prevent it?

I ask myself as to why scientists, educators, and PhD’s are still groping in the dark when Dr.G Reid Lyon had said in ‘Children of the Code’ that most of the disengaged kids are “Instructional Casualties”?
Is he the only one to say that? No.  Many others have said the same thing and they had said it even much earlier than Dr. G Reid Lyon did. Recently Jo-Anne Gross, from Linkedin, a group I belong to, was daring enough to say (in Linkedin) that reading failure is a case of ‘Dystechia!’ I hope more people will be bold enough to speak their mind like Jo-Anne. 

Sunday, September 6, 2015

Shame avoidance

The following is taken from 'Children of the Code'

Here are some of the things the 6 kids in the video above said:

Kid No.1: I’d make a scene …... I would act out….just rebel…I was just embarrassed
Kid No2: I just make up an excuse, I say I don’t have glasses with me, that normally worked but I don’t wear glasses.
Kid no.3: I usually slump down on my seat where they couldn’t see me. If they wanted me to read I’d pretend that I am figuring out something ….It’s pretty much what I have been doing for as long as I know.
Kid No.4: Go to restroom…… turn my head down …make like I was not paying attention so they won’t call me.
Kid No.5: I will go to the bathroom and stay until it was time and come back in.
Kid No. 6: I will act like I was asleep so they would not call on me

Friday, September 4, 2015

Correct 'Letter sounds'

I copied and pasted my article "How not to teach letter sounds" in Linkedin and a reader asked me if I had any videos on 'how to sound letters'.

It appears that there are many teachers who do not know how letter sounds let alone parents.

So, I copied 3 videos below for your listening pleasure. Please listen to them carefully. Ask your kids, especially kids who do not like reading, how to pronounce a few letters, say, F, M and L and please write to me and let me know if it is different from what you hear below.

You may write to me at:

Here are the three videos.

Tuesday, September 1, 2015

The Real 21st-Century Problem in Public Education

I picked the title above from a discussion on Linkedin in the internet. I believe articles like this will be leading the masses to bark up the wrong tree.  

"The October 2013 Southern Education Foundation study indicates clearly that poverty, which has long been the biggest obstacle to educational achievement, is more important than ever. It is our true 21st century problem.
A large and growing proportion of US students live in poverty and even concentrated poverty, have a disability, and/or are learning English as a second language. THAT is the paradigm shift, and we need a totally new set of policies to address that 21st century reality.
We do have a 21st century education crisis – poverty. Until we properly diagnose the illness, however, our prescribed remedies will continue to fall far short."

I believe poverty (the state of being extremely poor) is a problem but not necessarily the biggest problem in public education.