Wednesday, October 31, 2018

Blaming Phonics

Here is part of a conversation I had in a group on FB. If more parents open up and write like this lady, many teachers and parents will benefit a great deal from the discussions in that group. 

1.Research says that the best way to getting better at reading is Reading.
2.The problem is not insufficient phonics teaching as some claim, but it is insufficient access to books.
3.Research tells us that better libraries is associated with better reading scores.

Friday, October 26, 2018

Emails to Astro’s CEO - Henry Tan

These are my emails to the CEO of Astro, Mr.Henry Tan and to his PA Ms. Nora Yahya. 

My first email was sent to the CEO on the 8.10.2018 after several attempts to the staff of Astro since 13.9.2018.

Dear   Mr. Henry Tan,
This is my third email to you.

Peace is better than being right - Is it?

This is a warning to all teachers and parents to be wary of letting babies and kids listen to Charlie and the alphabets.

This morning while scrolling messages on LinkedIn I saw the above message.
I have written many posts on my blog as well as on LinkedIn saying that kids disengage from learning to read when they are confused. 

Well, I definitely want peace as I had fought a one and a half year battle with my former Lions club that had misappropriated funds meant for the poor. The club was deregistered on 28.6.2018.

Thursday, October 25, 2018

Australian Literacy Educators' Association

Let us take a short break from Astro and see what our 'Learned friends' from Down Under are doing.

More than a month ago I listened to a YouTube video by Alvin Irby found here

I found the above on Face Book on the page of ALEA Mackay - Australian Literacy Educators' Association.

The following is what I read about ALEA.

Wednesday, October 24, 2018

Astro TV and their 'Tidak apa' (lackadaisical) attitude

My first email to Astro complaining about the BabyTV programme teaching alphabet sounds  that is detrimental to kids was dated 13th September 2018.

I had also sent a link to my book for them to buy and read as to why that programme is not suitable for kids.

I fail to understand why Astro just cannot promise to stop airing that one programme 'Charlie and the Alphabet' until they are convinced that what I am saying is true and then completely ban that particular episode.

I received several responses and some of the emails are as below.

Sunday, October 21, 2018

Instructional casualties – ‘Dysteachia’

Here is part of a comment I made in one of the posts on LinkedIn.

You need to know how to teach the basics. You also need to understand why many smart kids are not able to read in English but are able to read in other languages.

The following is part of the response by the author of the post.

But remember that we all teach in different places. What is true for some (like this) is not for others. (Marcela Falcone)

This was my response to her comment:

Teachers all over the world have been continuously saying that many kids are unable to read because of 'Dysteachia' (a word coined by teachers in the US.) Has anyone said what it is that is being taught wrong by teachers? Why is it that many kids still leave school as illiterates?

Saturday, October 20, 2018

Correspondence between BabyTV and Luqman Michel (Part2)

Many educators and scientists in the world have said that many kids cannot read because of ‘Dsytechia’ (a term coined by teachers). This simply means that kids cannot read because teachers do not know how to teach.

However, no one has ever said what it is that is being taught wrongly. I know the answer to that question and have said it many times. It is simply because about 20% of kids in the world are prone to shutting down when taught wrong phonemes/sounds represented by letters.

Correspondence to and from BabyTV and Luqman Michel

I wrote to BabyTV, the producer of the programme aired by Astro, on 12th September 2018.

There was a prompt response on 13.9.2018 from Debbie Pattinson who is the consultant to BabyTV
I responded immediately telling her about the programme that I believe will result in more kids shutting down from learning to read.

I requested her to read a copy of my book.

On 17.9.2018 Debbie responded as follows:

Friday, October 19, 2018

Dyslexia vs Shut Down Kids (Part 4)

I will get back to Dr.Maszlee Malik and Astro soon. Meanwhile let us continue with Dyslexia vs. Shut down kids.

“Increased phonics instruction will not help a child with dyslexia. Children with dyslexia are able to learn phonics once they have the underlying phonemic awareness abilities; although they may continue having trouble applying it. This is why difficulty with phonics and word pronunciation is a good warning sign of dyslexia.”

My Response: With the exception of 2 kids none of my more than 60 students to date had problems with word pronunciation. I am sure there are kids who have problem with word pronunciation as well as phonological awareness problem. However, to call these kids dyslexic and say that 20% are so is definitely a crime. 

Thursday, October 18, 2018

Kit Siang to Dr.Maszlee: Don't fall into Najib's trap

The following is an article I read in  the Star on 16.10.2018. Here are some extracts from the article.

Kit Siang to Dr Maszlee: Don’t fall into Najib’s trap, stop talking about socks and shoes

“The DAP senior politician said that both Najib and Umno propagandists wanted to project the image that he [Dr Maszlee]  is a very mediocre minister who has very limited vision and objectives in the transformation of education in the country.”

Tuesday, October 16, 2018

They've got it all wrong - NOD Malaysia/ Star Online

In an article on Star Online on 4.10.2018; The National Organisation for Dyslexia Malaysia had said the following:

It has also been training teachers to teach language through the phonetic approach, assessing and teaching children who are dyslexic, and counselling parents.

“Dyslexia is a state in which one finds it extremely challenging to bring a sound to the written letter. One has difficulty in reading, writing and spelling.

“Therefore, sounds of the language or phonics are taught and not the letter names as in the traditional method.

“Where phonics does not work all the way, as in teaching English, the whole word approach is used,” said NOD president Dr Mullai A. Ramaiah.
Dr Mullai said dyslexia was often diagnosed as a disorder.

Sunday, October 14, 2018

Luqman Michel vs Astro and Baby TV (Part 3)

After almost a month and not making any headway I decided to write to the CEO of Astro.

Here are my two emails to the CEO of Astro.

Sent: Monday, 8 October 2018, 17:48:45 GMT+8
Subject: My complaint on your programme

Saturday, October 13, 2018

Luqman Michel vs Astro, BabyTv (Part 2)

The above is the episode on Astro and Unifi that I know will cause kids to shut down. I have explained as to why kids shut down in my blog posts as well as in my book.
On 12th September, 2018 I sent a lengthy email to Astro where I explained why kids shut down from learning to read. I requested Astro to use what I had discovered on why kids shut down to do a programme to reduce illiteracy. I recommended them to get a copy of my book from the internet.
Here are the main points stating that many kids shut down from learning to read because of wrong teaching of sounds.

Friday, October 12, 2018

Luqman Michel vs Astro and BabyTV

On 12.9.2018 I wrote to Astro stating that kids shut down from learning to read as a result of being confused. 

On 13.9.2018 (exactly a month ago) I wrote and complained about one of Astro’s programmes that I know will cause kids to shut down from learning to read.

Dyslexia vs Shut Down Kids (Part 3)

“Although many dyslexics learn to read accurately they may continue to read slowly and not automatically.”

My comment: Again only 2 of my more than 60 students so far read slowly and not automatically. These two students are the ones I taught this year. They were siblings where one is in primary 3 and the other is in primary 5.

Tuesday, October 9, 2018

Courtesy call on YB Datuk Jennifer Lasimbang

She is Sabah’s Deputy Education and Innovation minister. I made a courtesy call on her at her Dun office in Moyog today, Tuesday, 9 October, 2018.

Sunday, October 7, 2018

Dyslexia vs Shut down kids (Part 2)

"There has been over 30 years of documented, scientific evidence and research proving the existence of dyslexia." (Dyslexia Association)

My Response: How is it that after “30 years of documented scientific evidence” there is still no scientific definition of what dyslexia is?

Saturday, October 6, 2018

Dyslexia vs Shut Down Kids - Part 1

Facts (I call them lies) as claimed by the British Dyslexia Association

There has been over 30 years of documented, scientific evidence and research proving the existence of dyslexia. It is one of the most common learning disabilities to affect children.

Tuesday, October 2, 2018

Pamela Snow 'Perpetuating Myths about Phonics Instruction'


Here is an article in a blog post by Pamela Snow. The quotes in red are from a report by Prof. Robyn Ewing. I wrote to Robyn and am awaiting her response. The indented words that are not in red are by Pamela Snow.