Saturday, October 20, 2018

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:

Thank you for your email, we take the content of our shows very seriously and always appreciate feedback on them.
Would you be able to elaborate further on your email below on how the sounds are taught?

I responded immediately and here is my elaboration:
From: Luqman Michel []
Sent: 17 September 2018 23:31
To: Debbie Pattinson
Subject: Re: RE: RE: Complaint about your programme

Dear Debbie,
Thank you for continuing with this discussion.

I have explained in my book 'Shut down kids' why about 30% of kids, predisposed to shutting down, shut down when the original input is wrong. ( Thorndike's theory 1913).

I have managed to terminate 3 YouTube videos that taught vowel sounds wrongly.

Yes, Debbie, I am passionate about not teaching kids wrongly just as much as you are serious about the contents of your shows.

All that I know about why kids shut down is learned from my students that I took in and taught on a one on one basis to learn why kids who can read in Malay and Han Yu Pinyin could not read in English. I am trained in accounting/auditing and I am not a trained teacher. I started teaching kids because I was curious. 

To answer your question- far too many videos including your video on teaching alphabets add vowel sounds* to consonants which confuse about 30% of kids who need to be taught explicitly and systematically.

Kids will shut down when what they have learned (from your show on alphabets) does not agree with what they are subsequently taught.

Let us take the sound of 'F' on your video. It says 'Fuh/ fer '. About 70 % of kids have no problem with this (thank God for that) but those kids who are predisposed to shutting down will shut down and a majority of these kids are then classified as dyslexic.

For the 30% of kids, if the sound of 'F' is fuh and if the work 'ox' is pronounced the way it should be then 'Fox' should be ' fuhox ' and not 'fox' as sounded out by the teacher.

If the sound of 'L' is as pronounced (luh/ler) in the video how do this 30 % of kids pronounce words beginning with the letter 'L'.

The letter 'M', 'S' and 'T' fortunately do not add vowel* sounds to it. This is the way all consonants should be introduced.

Almost all consonants, on your video, starting with the letter 'B' are added with vowel sounds* which are incorrect.

Please listen to something that is even more terrible than your video to better understand what I am saying : Phonics Song - Alphabet Sounds | ABC Song For Children

You may want to do a programme based on my book if you are serious about reducing illiteracy.

You may also like to read my posts in my blog at Luqman's Dyslexia Blog
Please get back to me.

Thank you and kind regards,
Luqman Michel

*         Note now added: A better choice of words for ‘ adding vowel sound’ would have been ‘extraneous sounds.’

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